Rich and creamy Green Bean Casserole is even better without canned soup! Fresh vegetables, cream, bacon and a crispy onion topping make this classic side dish a star, not just at Thanksiving, but at every holiday, Sunday dinner, potluck and cookout!
This from scratch recipe makes THE BEST green bean casserole around! And while it doesn’t use any canned shortcuts, it isn’t a difficult recipe at all. Fresh sliced mushrooms, half & half cream, and cream cheese cook up quickly and easily with bacon, garlic and onions to create a thick, smooth, extra creamy sauce that beats canned cream of mushroom soup by a mile!
Related Recipe: Sauteed Green Beans with Bacon & Mushrooms
Fold in frozen green beans and top it with crisp, fun fried onions and you have a traditional green bean casserole that tastes better than you could have ever imagined!
It seems that Green Bean Casserole has forever been a favorite Thanksgiving side dish. And I guess in my life time that would be true. This tried and true comfort food favorite was created in the Campbell’s soup test kitchen in 1955.
But there’ nothing wrong with giving an old recipe new love. And a homemade touch focuses on using delicious ingredients that you choose to make an old favorite even more tasty than it was before!
I’ll walk through an overview of ingredients & steps in this section along with helpful tips!
Look for specifics at the end of the post in the recipe card.
- frozen cut green beans (These are added to the casserole frozen.)
- thick sliced bacon
- white, or button, mushrooms
- yellow onion
- beef broth
- half & half cream
- cream cheese
- salt, pepper, minced garlic
- French fried onions
How To Make Green Bean Casserole Without Canned Soup
Make Sauce Base. Sautee bacon pieces, onions and mushrooms together in bacon drippings. Stir in butter and minced garlic.
Make Creamy Mushroom Sauce. Add flour and stir until mushroom mixture is coated. Whisk in beef broth, stirring until flour is dissolved. Whisk in half & half, salt, pepper and cream cheese until sauce is thick and smooth.
Assemble Casserole. Fold frozen green beans and 1 cup of fried onions into sauce. Remove from heat. Spoon beans & sauce into a 9×13 dish. Top with fried onions. Drizzle with melted butter.
Bake. Bake 20-25 minutes or until onion topping is golden brown and the edges of the casserole is bubbly.
Can It Be Made Ahead of Time
This casserole is ideal for making ahead of time, making prepping for the holidays or a potluck so much easier! Simply make the sauce and put the casserole together EXCEPT for the topping. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
When you’re ready to cook your casserole, simply add the topping, drizzle with butter and bake as directed. The cook time might have to be extended by 10 minutes since the casserole will be cold.
Does Green Bean Casserole Freeze Well?
This casserole is also a great candidate for freezing. Simply follow the instructions for “making ahead.” Cover tightly and freeze for 2-3 months. Allow to thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then bake as directed allowing extra time since the casserole will be cold.
How to Thicken Green Bean Casserole
No one wants a runny a green bean casserole. Make sure your sauce is thick before you put your casserole together. It should be the texture of a thick gravy.
To make sure the sauce is thick: After you whisk the flour into the sauce in step #3, continue to whisk & allow the sauce to bubble and thicken. The longer the sauce simmers, the thicker it will get. If it still is not thickening as you would like it, whisk in an extra tablespoon of flour and allow to simmer and thicken before you move to the next step.
Main Dishes to Serve with Green Bean Casserole
Green Bean Casserole is always a favorite when served and goes with just about everything! Here are a few tried and true favorites to serve with this side dish.
- Creole Roasted Turkey Breast
- Southern Pecan Chicken
- Holiday Prime Rib
- Pepper Crusted Pork Tenderloin
- Pineapple Mustard Glazed Ham
- Cast Iron Skillet Steak
- Crispy Southern Fried Chicken
More Green Bean Recipes to Love
- Southern Green Beans & New Potatoes
- Italian Green Bean Salad
- Sauteed Green Beans with Bacon & Mushrooms
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Creamy Green Bean Casserole Without Canned Soup
- 5-6 slices thick cut bacon, cut into ½ inch pieces
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 8 ounces white, or button, mushrooms, sliced
- 3 tablespoons butter, divided into 2 tablespoon + 1 tbsp
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 3 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 1 cup beef broth
- 1 cup half & half cream
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
- 4 ounces cream cheese, cut into pieces
- 20 ounces frozen cut green beans, unthawed
- 3 cups French fried onions (6 ounce can), divided into 1 cup + 2 cups
- Preheat oven to 350° Fahrenheit.
- In a large skillet, begin to cook bacon pieces over medium heat. When bacon is almost done, add in diced onion. Sautee bacon and onion together until onion is translucent. Add in sliced mushrooms. Sautee until mushrooms begin to reduce (about 1-2 minutes).
- Add 2 tablespoons of butter and minced garlic to mushroom mixture. Stir until butter is melted. Stir in flour until all of the mixture is coated. Gradually stir in 1 cup of beef broth. Whisk until there are no flour lumps. Mixture will begin to bubble and thicken.
- Turn heat down to low. Whisk in half & half cream, salt & pepper. Add cream cheese pieces. Stir until melted.
- Fold frozen green beans and 1 cup fried onions into creamy mushroom sauce. Remove from heat.
- Spoon green bean mixture into a 9×13 casserole dish. Top with remaining 2 cups fried onions. Melt remaining 1 tablespoon butter. Pour over onion topping. Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until topping is golden brown and the edges are bubbly.