Stir Fried Green Beans with Ginger and Onions

Green beans make for a healthy and easy side dish recipe when stir fried with fresh ginger and onions. Soy sauce adds depth of flavor. Great for busy weeknights!

Stir Fried Green Beans with Ginger and Onions
Elise Bauer

Do you like green beans?

I love them in stir fries, especially fresh, crisp, tender green beans.

An Eay Way to Cook Fresh Green Beans

How do you know your green beans are fresh? Break one in half. It should "snap". If it bends limply like a rubber band, it's not fresh. Only buy fresh.

This stir fry cooks up quickly, with onions, ginger, and garlic, and a sauce of sweetened soy sauce with sesame oil. It couldn't be easier!

Just make sure you are using fresh and tender beans. (Older tougher beans won't be cooked enough in the time it takes to make this stir fry.)

Stir Fried Green Beans with Ginger and Onions
Elise Bauer

How to Cut and Trim Green Beans

Super fresh green beans won't require a knife to trim or cut. The tail ends will be supple and you can leave them on. The stem ends need to come off, but you should be able to snap them off with your fingers. You can even snap them apart into segments with your hands instead of cutting them. Its way faster!

If your beans are less fresh and the tail ends are shriveled and brown, you'll need to cut those off with a knife or kitchen scissors, and if the stem end won't snap off, you'll need to do the same.

Best Oils for Stir Frying Green Beans

This recipe calls for canola or peanut oil are for stir frying the green beans; however, you can use avocado oil or olive oil.

You'll also notice the recipe calls for sesame oil added at the end. Sesame oil's flavor is stronger when you finish with it, as opposed to using it for the actual cooking. There's no appropriate substitute for the sesame oil in this recipe. If you omit it, you can add a generous amount of toasted sesame seeds to add the depth of flavor that sesame oil would.

Other Vegetables to Stir Fry

You can use this method with other quick-cooking vegetables in place of green beans, or in addition to the green beans:

  • Snap peas
  • Snow peas
  • Yellow squash
  • Mushrooms
  • Zucchini

More Recipes to Make With Fresh Green Beans

From the Editors Of Simply Recipes

Stir Fried Green Beans with Ginger and Onions

Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 7 mins
Total Time 22 mins
Servings 3 to 4 servings

This recipe results in green beans that still have a bit of crunch to them. If you want your beans more cooked, blanch them first for a minute or two in boiling water, then rinse with cold water to stop the cooking, then pat dry with paper towels before putting the beans in the hot pan and oil.

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Because of the quick cooking time, this recipe is best done with fresh beans (the ones that snap as you break them in half).

Ingredients

  • 2 to 3 tablespoons canola or peanut oil
  • 1/2 to 3/4 pound fresh, tender green beans, cut into 1 1/2- to 2-inch pieces
  • 1 small onion, sliced root to stem (about 1 cup)
  • 1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and cut into matchsticks
  • 1 large garlic clove, sliced very thin
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce (use gluten-free soy sauce for gluten-free version)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • Pinch freshly ground black pepper

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a wok until shimmery hot:

    Heat a wok or large frying pan over high heat on the hottest burner you have for about 90 seconds. Add the vegetable oil and let it heat up until shimmery.

    (Toss a sliver of onion into the oil when you think it's hot. If the oil is hot enough, it will sizzle.)

    stir-fried-green-beans-ginger-method-1
    Elise Bauer
  2. Add the vegetables:

    Add the green beans, onions, and ginger and toss to combine. Break up any clumps of sliced onion that might have stuck together.

    stir-fried-green-beans-ginger-method-2
    Elise Bauer

    Spread everything out in the pan and let it sear untouched for anywhere from 30 to 90 seconds. You want to get a little browning on the vegetables. Stir the vegetables and let sit for another 30 to 90 seconds.

    stir-fried-green-beans-ginger-method-3
    Elise Bauer

    Add the sliced garlic, stir again and cook for another minute.

  3. Add the soy sauce mixture:

    Mix the soy sauce and sugar together and pour into the pan. Turn off the heat and immediately toss the vegetables to combine. The sauce will start to caramelize and may burn unless you keep everything moving for a few seconds.

    stir-fried-green-beans-ginger-method-4
    Elise Bauer
  4. Add the sesame oil and black pepper:

    Pour the sesame oil over the green beans and onions and sprinkle with black pepper. Toss to combine one more time.

    stir-fried-green-beans-ginger-method-5
    Elise Bauer

    The beans should still be somewhat crisp. They will cook a little more in the residual heat of the pan or serving dish.

  5. Serve the beans:

    Serve immediately or let rest and serve at room temperature.

Stir Fried Green Beans with Ginger and Onions
Elise Bauer