French Green Beans with Butter and Herbs

French green beans, also known as haricots verts, are slender green beans. Here, they’re blanched, then sautéed in rich butter with onions and fresh herbs. Serve them as a side dish for any occasion!

French Green Beans Haricot Verts
Elise Bauer

Ever see those skinny little green beans in the market?

They’re a French variety of green bean, also known as haricots verts, or filet beans. Haricots verts are more delicate than regular green beans and cook up more quickly.

This is a simple recipe in which you blanch the beans first and then sauté them quickly in a little butter with onions and fresh garden herbs.

French Green Beans Haricot Verts
Elise Bauer

If you can't find haricots verts, you can use regular fresh green beans, just boil them a little longer.

Do you have a method of preparing haricots verts? Please let us know about it in the comments.

French Green Beans vs. Regular Green Beans

The biggest difference between French green beans — haricots verts — and regular green beans is that the French ones are longer and thinner. They're also a bit more tender than regular green beans.

You can substitute regular green beans in this recipe, however, they're a little sweeter and less earthy than haricots verts. The herbs used here complement the earthy haricots verts but also work with regular green beans.

How To Select Fresh Green Beans at the Store

Look for the freshest beans at the farmers market or grocery store. They should be firm, smooth, vibrantly colored pods that snap easily when you bend them.

How to Store and Freeze French Green Beans

Store unwashed green beans in the refrigerator in a zipper top bag or airtight container for up to 7 days. Wash them right before using.

To freeze French green beans, trim fresh beans and blanch them so they keep their color, flavor, and texture. Store them in freezer proof zipper top bags for 10 to 12 months.

What to Serve With French Green Beans

More Green Bean Recipes to Make!

From the Editors Of Simply Recipes

French Green Beans with Butter and Herbs

Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Servings 4 servings

Use fresh herbs if available. If not, you can used dried, but use a quarter as much.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound green beans (haricots verts), trimmed

  • 1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped

  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves

  • 2 tablespoons tarragon or basil, finely chopped

  • 2 tablespoons chives, finely chopped

  • Salt and pepper, to taste

  • Lemon wedges

Method

  1. Blanch the beans, then plunge them in ice water:

    Bring a large pot of salty water to a boil. Prepare a large bowl of ice water. Blanch the beans in the boiling water for 2 minutes.

    If you are using regular green beans, and not haricots vert, just boil them a little longer.

    Plunge them into the ice water to stop the cooking and set the color. Drain the beans and pat dry on a cloth or paper towel.

  2. Sauté the onions:

    Heat the butter over medium-high heat in a large sauté pan. Cook the onions until translucent, about 2-3 minutes.

  3. Add the green beans:

    Add the green beans and sauté for 2-3 minutes, stirring often.

    sauteeing french green beans haricot verts
    Elise Bauer
  4. Add the seasonings:

    Add all the herbs and some salt and pepper and toss to combine. Cook for 1 minute more.

    Serve hot or at room temperature, with lemon wedges.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
130 Calories
9g Fat
12g Carbs
3g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 130
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 9g 12%
Saturated Fat 6g 28%
Cholesterol 23mg 8%
Sodium 146mg 6%
Total Carbohydrate 12g 4%
Dietary Fiber 4g 15%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 18mg 89%
Calcium 84mg 6%
Iron 2mg 9%
Potassium 265mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.