How to Freeze Green Beans

1
Start with Fresh-Picked Beans

Hands holding green beans
Kathryn Russell Studios / Getty Images

There's just no comparison between fresh-picked green beans and the canned kind that they sell at the grocery store. Freeze a bunch of green beans while they're in season, and you can enjoy that farm fresh flavor year-round. Here's a step-by-step guide to taking you through the process

2
Snap Off the Stem Ends

Snap the Ends Off the Green Beans
Snap the Ends Off the Green Beans. Photo © Erin Huffstetler

Wash your green beans. Then, snap the ends off of each bean to remove the stemmy part. If your beans have a string running down their sides, peel that off when you're snapping off the ends. Leave your beans long, or cut them to your desired size.

3
Blanche the Green Beans

Full frame of fresh green beans (Phaseolus vulgaris)
Douglas Sacha / Getty Images

Then, blanche your green beans by submerging them in a pot of boiling water for three minutes. This will stop (or at least slow) the enzyme process, so that you preserve the beans' fresh flavor, color and texture.

4
Submerge the Green Beans in an Ice Bath

Submerge the Green Beans in an Ice Water Bath
Submerge the Green Beans in an Ice Water Bath. Photo © Erin Huffstetler

Transfer the blanched green beans to an ice bath to stop the cooking process. Let them cool for a few minutes. Then, drain them into a colander, and pat them dry with a towel. The more water you remove from the beans, the less ice crystals you'll have when you freeze them.

5
Flash Freeze the Green Beans

Flash Freeze the Green Beans
Flash Freeze the Green Beans. Photo © Erin Huffstetler

Spread the green beans out on a cookie sheet in a single layer, and flash freeze them. This prevent your beans from freezing together in clumps, and make them easier to use later.

6
Transfer the Frozen Beans to Freezer Bags

Frozen Green Beans
Frozen Green Beans. Photo © Erin Huffstetler

When the green beans are frozen, transfer them to freezer bags, and return them to the freezer. Your green beans will keep indefinitely, but are best used within a year.

To use: Simply pull out as many beans as you need, and proceed with your recipe. There's no need to thaw your beans before you use them.