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Chinese Green Bean Recipe

This Chinese Green Bean Recipe tastes just like what you’ll find at your favorite Chinese restaurant. All of us love our garden fresh green beans prepared this way, and I’ve made this copycat recipe several times already this season.

Sweet T is a picky eater but one healthy food she enjoys is green beans, particularly the Chinese Green Beans found at Chinese buffets. Since we can’t order Chinese takeout every other day, I needed to come up with some Asian green beans that I could easily make at home. This simple dish was born and has become a family favorite.

chinese green beans restaurant style

Usually, when I try to copycat a restaurant food it takes several tries and tweaks to get things just right, but not this time. They are the best green beans and make the perfect side dish to go with your main course.

If you like a little spice (and I do) you can add red pepper flakes to give your Chinese green beans a little zing. I don’t add them when I’m making them for my daughter obviously, but the grown-ups at our house enjoy the kick.

How to Make Chinese Green Beans

Have you been missing your local Chinese buffet due to all the restaurant restrictions currently in place? Try this Chinese restaurant copycat recipe. All you need is 15-minutes and a few simple ingredients found at your local grocer. There’s no need to make a special trip to the Asian grocery store to make these Chinese green beans.

Ingredients

  • soy sauce
  • honey
  • water
  • unsalted butter
  • coconut oil
  • fresh green beans, trimmed
  • sea salt
  • minced garlic
  • minced onions
  • sesame oil
  • red pepper flakes (optional for spicy green beans)
  • sesame seeds (optional for garnish)

Directions:

  1. Combine soy sauce, honey, and 1T water in a small dish.
  2. In a large skillet (or hot wok if you have one!) heat the butter with the coconut oil over medium-high heat.
  3. Add the green beans and 1/2 tsp salt to the hot oil and toss with tongs to coat well. This step “blisters” and blackens the green beans initially.
    chinese green beans recipe stir fry
  4. Next, reduce the heat to medium heat and cook, turning the beans occasionally until most are well browned, shrunken, and tender (7-8 mins).
  5. Reduce heat to low.
  6. Add the garlic and cook stirring constantly until the garlic is softened and fragrant (15-20 seconds). You can add the red pepper flakes at this point if desired.
  7. Carefully add the soy sauce mixture and cook stirring constantly until the liquid reduces to a glaze consistency that coats the beans (30-45 seconds).
  8. Add sesame oil to taste.
  9. Immediately transfer the beans to a serving dish.
  10. Don’t forget to scrape out the sauce to include!
  11. Top with optional sesame seeds to make your sauteed green beans look pretty. Serve warm.
Chinese green beans

Serve this tasty side dish with Chinese restaurant fried rice to enjoy your favorite Chinese food at home!

Tips for Making Asian-Style Green Beans

  • Sesame oil is largely responsible for the distinct flavor of these Chinese garlic green beans. Note that sesame oil is a flavoring oil and not be heated up to high temps for cooking like vegetable oil or coconut oil. Add it toward the end of your recipe for a good way to add that unique flavor that comes in restaurant versions of your favorite Asian-inspired dishes. I’m generous with this because I love the flavor but if it’s your first time using sesame oil to flavor a dish, you might want to use less oil. The good news is you can add it to taste much like salt and black pepper.
  • I intentionally used reduced-sodium soy sauce in my copycat Chinese recipes because I want my cooking to be healthier than what is found in restaurants. If you’re really going for that MSG-laden taste though (and I don’t judge!) you’ll want to use regular soy sauce.
  • This is a great recipe if you’re looking for a copycat version of what is found in American Chinese restaurants. I used good old string beans since they are readily available in grocery stores around here. I’m also pretty sure that’s what’s used in our Americanized Chinese food on the buffet. For a more authentic Chinese green beans recipe use Chinese long beans or French green beans if you can’t find them.
chinese green beans restaurant style

Chinese Green Beans

Jenn
Enjoy Chinese green beans at home with this delicious copycat recipe.
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Course Recipes
Cuisine Side Dish
Servings 4
Calories 131 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 T reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 T honey
  • 1 T water
  • 1 T unsalted butter
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 12 oz. fresh green beans trimmed
  • ½ t sea salt to taste
  • 1 T minced garlic
  • 1 T minced onion
  • Sesame oil to taste
  • Red pepper flakes optional
  • Sesame seeds optional

Instructions
 

  • Combine soy sauce, honey, and 1T water in a small dish.
  • In a large skillet (or hot wok if you have one!) heat the butter with the coconut oil over medium-high heat.
  • Add the green beans and 1/2 tsp salt to the hot oil and toss with tongs to coat well. This step "blisters" and blackens the green beans initially.
  • Next, reduce the heat to medium heat and cook, turning the beans occasionally until most are well browned, shrunken, and tender (7-8 mins).
  • Reduce heat to low.
  • Add the garlic and cook stirring constantly until the garlic is softened and fragrant (15-20 seconds). You can add the red pepper flakes at this point if desired.
  • Carefully add the soy sauce mixture and cook stirring constantly until the liquid reduces to a glaze consistency that coats the beans (30-45 seconds).
  • Add sesame oil to taste.
  • Immediately transfer the beans to a serving dish.
  • Don't forget to scrape out the sauce to include!
  • Top with optional sesame seeds to make your sauteed green beans look pretty. Serve warm.
Keyword chinese green beans recipe, chinese recipes, chinese style recipes, green beans, side dishes, vegetable recipes
Nutrition Facts
Chinese Green Beans
Amount Per Serving (1 serving)
Calories 131 Calories from Fat 90
% Daily Value*
Fat 10g15%
Saturated Fat 3g19%
Polyunsaturated Fat 7g
Cholesterol 8mg3%
Sodium 209mg9%
Carbohydrates 11g4%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 7g8%
Protein 2g4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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