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Jan 20, 2011 05:21 AM

tasty non-fresh green beans - do they exist?

Now that it's hard to get decent fresh beans I'm looking for a frozen or canned substitute. I usually get frozen beans this time of year, but find them to be tough and flavorless and well... sad. We even tried frozen haricot vert (a couple brands) - again flavorless and sad. :(

I've never been a fan of canned beans, but am willing to try them again. So, do you have a favorite brand of either frozen or canned beans you recommend?

I know. I could just eat winter veg and wait for fresh beans to be local and wonderful, but DH is not a huge veggie eater, green beans are one of the few he enjoys.


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  1. I can't imagine that there are any canned ones worth eating. The TJ's haricots vert are ok, better than most, it helps to saute them in some butter. I just wait for summer, myself but I know what you mean!

    1. Did you try the TJ frozen haricots? I think those are about as good as it gets in the winter...

      3 Replies
      1. re: coney with everything

        TJs are what we just finished. DH thought they were awful. :(

          1. re: jujuthomas

            I buy the organic frozen green beans from TJs (not the haricots; I didn't like them either). Put 'em in a pan with enough water to cover, bring the water to a boil and then turn the heat off. They don't really need to cook, just warm up. They still have a bit of crunch to them.

        1. I just bought some verts from Costco (in a giant bag). They are fabulous! The bag is so giant though, I imagine frost will get in soon and the last 1/3rd of the bag won't be so great. They tasted very fresh, were bright green, very thin, and we not rubbery in the least.

          5 Replies
          1. re: sedimental

            The bag is so giant though, I imagine frost will get in soon and the last 1/3rd of the bag won't be so great.

            This is where a FoodSaver comes in handy. You can split a big bag up into more manageable portions and the last batch will be just as fresh as the first..

            1. re: al b. darned

              Yes, I have one. I don't know if the OP does.

              1. re: sedimental

                we do, but we never use it. it's a good idea tho for frozen veggies, since we use them sooo slowly.

                in other news, I went to our local asian market and found GORGEOUS fresh green beans for $1.79/lb! yum!

              1. re: sedimental

                +2. bought them last week - couldn't believe how crisp & sweet they were!

              2. I believe they're best treated as a winter vegetable. For me, that means cooked longer with more flavorings--whether that is just garlic and olive oil or some nice bacon/pancetta/ham hock or the like it turns them into a much better veg. You can't recreate summer flavor in the winter.

                3 Replies
                1. re: escondido123



                  1. re: escondido123

                    escondido: "You can't recreate summer flavor in the winter."

                    Yes, you're right. But the long, very slow cooking of greenbeans in baconfat (and bacon) and garlic is a joy regardless of the season. I put up enough of this wilted delight in the summer that I actually associate the flavors with both seasons.

                    1. re: kaleokahu

                      When I was a child, this is how my mom cooked green beans, period, except for the times she just dumped a can into a pan and heated them up. I hated those - had to eat'em anyway, of course, but she knew my aversion and if there were bacon and onion to be had she'd usually make the extra effort. Oddly, it doesn't work well with frozen green beans, I think, but that nasty tinny taste of canned beans just melts away. The French-cut green beans she'd cook au gratin, which she pronounced "ah grotten", by pouring cheese sauce over them and baking them. I liked that, too.

                  2. The Fresh Market near us has French-grown haricots verts in the frozen section.