Green Bean Casserole Recipe

November 22, 2011 by staff 

Green Bean Casserole Recipe, The ever popular green bean casserole has become a staple for Thanksgiving, but you haven’t really enjoyed it until you’ve tried “French Chef” Julia Child’s classic recipe.
While Julia Child thought the green bean casserole with fried onion rings was — a classic American Thanksgiving dish — this famous “French Chef” – who passed in 2004 at the age of 91 – liked to showcase a somewhat “French version” of this casserole on her 1960’s and 1970′s era public television cooking shows. In turn, Child’s TV cooking partner, Jacques Pepin, called Child’s version “green bean heaven” because of its rich taste with “lots of cream, butter and crispy green beans.” At the same time, Child told Pepin that “it’s much more than just dumping a can of mushroom soup over beans,” because “using canned or even frozen green beans for the recipe was horrid.”

In turn, Child scolded anyone who complained about cooking Thanksgiving dinner because “it’s an honor,” she exclaimed with an affectionate slap on a turkey about to be roasted. Child then dispenses with the pleasantries and met fire with fire by stating that “anybody can cook a Thanksgiving dinner. And, why don’t they care?”

Child’s green bean casserole made easy

In 1996, Child was ranked #46 on TV Guide’s 50 Greatest TV Stars of All Time. She graduated from Smith College, earning a B.A. in history back in 1934 and also graduated from the famed Paris cooking schools Le Cordon Bleu and Le Grand Diploma.

In addition, Child authored the 734-page book “Mastering the Art of French Cooking,” that became an international best seller and still receives critical acclaim that derived in part from its easy to follow recipes.

For instance, she told a TV audience in 1971 that: “I recommend only fresh green beans for the casserole.”

Child then offered a short history of the American version of the green bean casserole that consists of green beans, cream of mushroom soup and topped with French fried onions.

Child noted that this dish has been a classic Thanksgiving side dish since the 1950’s when the Campbell Soup Company offered a cooking contest around two things most Americans always had on hand: green beans and cream of mushroom soup.

While Child never took credit for the green bean casserole – and, in fact, made fun of it during her annual Thanksgiving TV cooking shows – she said “it’s a must for any Thanksgiving dinner.”

Green bean casserole can be modified

What’s nice about a green bean casserole, explained Child during one of her early cooking shows, is “how easy it is to make, and you can add your own ideas very easily.”

For instance, she said “you can simply follow the directions on the back of most cans of mushroom soup that feature green bean casseroles.”

At the same time, this “French Chef,” made it clear that when preparing a classic green bean casserole, to also use “fresh French beans,” that she said are “also referred to as green beans.”

In turn, she always recommended using fresh, “thinner type green or French beans” for her casserole recipe.

“These bright beans are stripped down to their essence and tossed with lots butter. There’s no loss of color, flavor or texture by cooking the beans in advance,” explained Child while also advising Thanksgiving cooks to “prepare the beans up to one day in advance,” and “covered tightly and refrigerated,” and then reheated for about five minutes when ready to serve.

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