Bacon Green Bean Casserole
This Bacon Green Bean Casserole is the perfect side dish for your holiday meal! A common side for Thanksgiving and Christmas, this casserole dish is made with fresh green beans, fresh mushrooms, and is made without any cream of mushroom soup!
When it comes to planning your holiday dinner menu, we have your back! Whether you need a classic Thanksgiving Stuffing Recipe or you want to try a delicious Vegetable Stuffing for a change! Both are amazingly flavorful. My Candied Yams and Easy Sweet Potato Casserole are both loved that I often have to make each recipe! And check out my Thanksgiving Pies for some dessert help!
Why This Recipe Works
- No cream of mushroom soup. This bacon green bean casserole recipe is without cream of mushroom soup! Instead we use fresh mushrooms, chicken bouillon, spices, and flour for a mush healthier and more flavorful option!
- Perfect for holidays or Sunday dinner. I’m sure you’ve seen a traditional green bean casserole at a family or holiday dinner. It’s a popular holiday menu tradition for Thanksgiving dinner or Christmas dinner! This recipe is by far the best because it uses fresh green beans, fresh mushrooms, and no cream of mushroom soup! Top that with some crispy French fried onions and you have the most amazing homemade green bean casserole!
- Real ingredients. Since we are making a green bean casserole without cream of mushroom soup, with fresh mushrooms and fresh green beans, our flavors are much fresher and the textures are much richer!
- Fresh Green Beans: This fresh green bean casserole with bacon is by far the best green bean casserole with bacon because of the fresh beans. If you don’t have fresh green beans, I would recommend getting the frozen green beans from Costco! Those are cheaper than fresh but still high quality. Last resort should be to use canned beans. If you use canned, just note that there will be a loss of flavor and texture in the beans.
- Bacon: Use what bacon you prefer. You can use thick bacon or thin bacon. I would recommend using raw bacon and not precooked bacon since it produces the bacon grease in the skillet which enhances the flavor in this amazing crispy bacon green bean casserole.
- White Mushrooms: If you don’t like mushrooms and choose to reduce the amount of mushrooms (or omit them entirely), note that the mushrooms will absorb some of the sauce, so the sauce will be thicker. Without the mushrooms, or with less mushrooms, there will be much more sauce in the bacon green bean casserole.
- Flour: Typically you’ll find green bean casserole recipes with cream of mushroom soup. However, we are making green bean casserole without cream of mushroom soup! So, the flour is important because it will help thicken the sauce without the soup.
- French Fried Onions: These are a crispy fried onion that will be used to top the green bean casserole recipe with bacon.
- Blanch the green beans. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the green beans and cook for 5 minutes. Remove, drain, then place the beans in an ice bath for 2-3 minutes. Remove and pat dry.
- Cook the bacon, onion and mushrooms. Add the bacon to a large skillet over medium heat. Cook until the fat is rendered and the bacon is crisp (but not over cooked). Add the onion and cook until translucent (about 5 minutes). Add the garlic and mushrooms. Cook for 5 minutes.
- Make the creamy sauce. Transfer the bacon, onion and mushrooms mixture to a large bowl. In the now empty skillet, add the butter and melt (leave any leftover bacon grease). Add the flour and cook for 1 minutes. Gradually pour in the milk while whisking constantly. Add the parmesan reggiano, chicken bouillon, pepper, and salt. Stir and bring to a simmer. Cook the cream sauce until somewhat thickened.
- Combine. Add the bacon and mushroom mixture and the blanched green beans to the sauce. Mix to coat. Pour the green bean mixture into a baking dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
- Bake. Place in a 350°F preheated oven. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove and top with the crispy fried onions. Return to the oven and bake for 15 minutes minutes. Remove and let sit for 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy!
I use my kitchen shears to cut the bacon into bite size pieces, I find it to be so much easier than using a knife.
I recommend using raw bacon since you’ll use some of the bacon grease from the pan to make the yummy sauce!
Using fresh green beans will give you the best flavor and texture! You can use frozen green beans if you’d like, just blanch them from frozen (will take a minute ish longer in the boiling water since they were frozen) – note frozen green beans are typically already blanched so this point we are mainly just trying to thaw the beans and get them ready to cook in the oven.
Make Ahead, Storing, and Freezing
For make head, I would just blanch the green beans and chop the onions and mushrooms. You’ll want to cook the bacon and make the sauce on the day you are serving the dish so that the bacon stays crispy and the sauce is fresh.
Store any leftover bacon green bean casserole in an airtight container in the fridge for 2-3 days. The longer the leftovers sit, the quicker the bacon will go soft.
You’ll find this dish will be gone before you can even think of freezing it! If you do freeze it, note that the bacon will go soft!
If you want to blanch the green beans ahead of time you can. I would wait to do the bacon and the sauce on the day you are serving it so the bacon doesn’t go soft and so the sauce is fresh (you can’t really get the same results if you are making the sauce ahead of time and not the bacon since you use residual bacon grease to make the sauce!)
If you don’t want to use the French fried onions, you can use crushed potatoes chips on top or bread crumbs. I highly, highly recommend the fried onions! Oh man they are so yummy and are the perfect crunchy topping for the ultimate green bean casserole!
Using fresh green beans will be a big help for this! Canned green beans are already soft. Add a trip to the oven and they’ll easily go mushy. Using no cream of mushroom soup also helps because we are using fresh mushrooms and a freshly made sauce. If you have leftovers and the bacon is sitting in that sauce, the bacon will eventually go soft.
I know lots of recipes for green bean casserole with bacon and cheese that will use cheddar cheese. I prefer using parmesan cheese. My favorite is parmeggiano reggiano. You can use a combination of parmesan and asiago for a bit more of a flavor depth.
You want to let the flour mixture cook to thicken well. Then slowly add the milk while whisking. Then let the sauce come to a low simmer to thicken. That’s the key to getting a good sauce thickness!
More Thanksgiving Recipes
- Praline Pumpkin Pie
- Mashed Potatoes with Half and Half
- Dinner Rolls Recipe
- Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon
- Pomegranate Jello Salad
Bacon Green Bean Casserole
- 1 lb fresh green beans - trimmed and cut in half, or bite size pieces
- 8 slices bacon - chopped (regular or thick bacon is fine)
- 1 small sweet onion - diced
- 1 teaspoon garlic - minced
- 8 oz white mushrooms - chopped
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups 2% milk
- 1/2 cup parmesan reggiano
- 1 tablespoon Better than Bouillon Chicken Base
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 oz French fried onions
- Preheat oven to 350 °F. Spray a baking dish with cooking spray.
- Blanch green beans: boil a pot of water to boil. Add the green beans and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the stove, drain, and place the green beans in an ice bath for 2-3 minutes. Remove and pat dry. Set aside.
- In a skillet over medium heat add the bacon, cook until the fat is rendered and the bacon is crisp. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes or until translucent. Add the garlic and mushrooms and cook for another 5 minutes, until the mushrooms have softened.
- Transfer the bacon and mushroom mixture to a plate or bowl. No need to discard the bacon grease in the pan. Add the butter and melt. Then add the flour, cook for 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Gradually pour in the milk, whisking constantly while doing so. Add the parmesan Reggiano, bouillon, pepper, and salt. Bring to a low simmer and cook until somewhat thickened.
- Stir the bacon, mushroom mixture and the green beans into the sauce. Transfer everything to the prepared baking dish and bake for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and top with the French fried onions and bake for an additional 15 minutes, the onions will be golden and the mixture will be hot and bubbly.
- Remove from the oven and let sit for a few minutes before serving.