Green Beans with Almonds

5 from 25 votes

If you're looking for something lighter than green bean casserole for Thanksgiving, try my pan-roasted crisp and tender Green Beans with Almonds side dish!

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Green Beans and Almonds is a light and crisp fresh green side dish to serve on Thanksgiving. It’s the best green bean side dish (better than casserole in my opinion), and offers a nutritious and colorful dish to add to your meal. It’s embarrassingly easy to make and pairs really well with turkey and mashed potatoes! I hope you include it on your ever-growing Thanksgiving menu.

Close up of green beans with almonds with parmesan cheese and lemon wedges

How do you cook green beans

Blanching green beans is the best way to cook them!  There’s an official name for it called: blanch and shock. Actually this rule is not just for green beans. It works for any green vegetables for that matter. This technique is widely used to make sure that green beans come out tender yet crisp without losing that beautiful bright green color.

To do this, bring a pot of water to a rolling boil (with our without salt). Before adding the green beans to the boiling water, prepare a bowl with ice and cold water. Drop the green beans in the boiling water for only 2 minutes. It’s important not to walk away from the pot here. We want to keep the cooking time to a minimum and quickly shock the green beans with ice water immediately after.

When the 2 minutes are up, drain the green beans and quickly plunge them in the “bath” of ice water. A rule of thumb is the beans should spend as much time in the cold water as in the hot. 

Another tip is to make sure all the green bean pieces are similar in length so they cook evenly in the skillet after the blanching process is done.

These cooking tips will help you get tender, crisp, gorgeous green green beans in every bite.

How do you make green beans with almonds?

Start with fresh green beans, trim off the ends and wash them well. Does anyone else use kitchen shears for trimming vegetables? You can pretty much do it one-handed and I find it much faster than using a knife or my hands.

Colander with fresh string green beans after being washed

When they’re all trimmed, you’re pretty much done with any prep work needed. So gather the remaining ingredients including the flavor team: parmesan cheese, garlic and lemons. I’ll transfer the beans and garlic to the skillet to get that cooking.

Plate of green beans after being trimmed. Next to the plate is parmesan cheese, lemon slices and garlic

In the same pan used to cook the green beans with garlic, roast the almonds. You can add more olive oil here, but I find that it’s not necessary since there is usually residual olive oil from cooking the green beans. You’ll want to keep an eye on the almonds and frequently toss them so they are golden brown all over without any burnt spots.

I sometimes will toast more than I need for the recipe so I can munch on them or throw some in salads. If you don’t have time to toast the almonds, you can also buy toasted maracona almonds to use in the recipe. The silvered or sliced almonds work as well, but there’s something more tasty about the whole freshly toasted maracona almonds in this dish!

Pan with toasted marcona almonds and a wooden spoon

The almonds will go right on top of the cooked green beans with a sprinkling of parmesan cheese and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Beat that, green bean casserole. There’s a lighter side dish in town – Green Beans with Almonds!

Large plate of green beans with almonds - Thanksgiving side dish

Other Thanksgiving side dish recipes:

Lighten up the heavy Thanksgiving meal or holiday meal with this green beans with almonds side dish. It’s a really tasty reliable compliment to the main course, and everyone will love the golden toasted almonds crunch on top! If you’ve ever had green beans amandine, this kinda reminds me of that recipe but without the lemon-butter sauce. It’ an all around perfect side dish to make for the big meal.

If you’ve tried this healthy-ish feel good Green Beans with Almonds recipe or any other recipe on FeelGoodFoodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories!

Green Beans with Almonds

If you’re looking for something lighter than green bean casserole for Thanksgiving, try my pan-roasted crisp and tender Green Beans with Almonds side dish!
5 from 25 votes
Servings 6 servings
Course Side Dish
Calories 89
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 15 mins


  • 1 pound green beans ends trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • ¼ cup marcona almonds
  • 1 tablespoon parmesan cheese grated (optional)
  • 1 lemon for serving


  • Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Add the green beans, and cook until bright green but still firm, about 2 minutes. Use a colander to drain the green beans, then quickly transfer them to bowl filled with ice and water to stop the cooking process. Drain again and pat dry with a paper towel.
  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant but not golden, about 1 minute. 
  • Add the green green beans, salt and pepper to the skillet with the garlic and cook until the green beans become fork tender but still crisp, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Remove the green beans from heat, and sprinkle with grated parmesan
  • In the same skillet used to cook the green beans, add the marcona almonds and toast them until golden brown, about 5-6 minutes. Remove from heat and add on top of the green beans. 
  • Serve with more parmesan cheese and fresh lemon wedges, if desired.


Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container. They will last about 3-4 days in the fridge.
Make Ahead Tips: The beans can be blanched (boiled until barely crisp-tender) up to 1 day ahead. Store in the fridge wrapped in a paper towel in a ziplock bag to keep fresh until ready to cook. 
Substitutes: For best results, follow the recipe as is. However if you don’t like almonds, you can try this with any other nut you’d like. It would work really well with walnuts or pecans. If you’re not a fan of the parmesan cheese, just leave it out. 


Calories: 89kcal, Carbohydrates: 8g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 5g, Sodium: 212mg, Potassium: 232mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 520IU, Vitamin C: 19.2mg, Calcium: 61mg, Iron: 1.1mg

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Large plate of green beans with almonds - Thanksgiving side dish

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  1. Why is there no way to print this recipe. I won’t waste my time in the future with this site.

    1. If you scroll down to the recipe card, on the right of the title “Green Beans with Almonds” and on top of the image on the recipe card, there is a printer symbol that will allow you to print the recipe.

  2. I made this last night for thanksgiving and absolutely loved it!! It was so quick and easy. Thanks so much for this recipe! I love green bean casserole but wanted a healthier version and this was perfect. I would definitely make this again and not wait for thanksgiving!