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Easy Green Bean Casserole Side Dish with French Fried Onions

Green bean casserole with cream of mushroom soup topped with french fried onions is a favorite in most American homes. Not just for a holiday dinner, this creamy casserole has become a regular side dish at picnics, barbecues, and 4th of July family gatherings. Super simple to mix together, even made and assembled the night before. Bring this side dish to your next party and watch it vanish.

If you need another side dish that will never be turned away, try the quick & easy corn on the cob made in the Instant Pot. For complete directions and topping suggestions, get all the information here.

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Green bean casserole on a yellow and green flowered trimmed plate on a green tablecloth with a fork

History of Green Bean Casserole using Cream of Mushroom Soup

Campbell’s tell is that this recipe was developed by Campbells in the 1950s for a newspaper article by Dorcas Reilly.  Dorcas Reilly who is credited with this recipe submitted an original yellowed recipe card to the National Inventor’s Hall of Fame in Akron Ohio in 2002. We all have a great debt of appreciation to Ms. Reilly for a tradition that will live on for years.

No matter where the recipe was created families have been serving up this side dish for years and will for years to come.

Ingredients for Traditional Green Bean Casserole

  • Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom soup
  • Milk 1% or 2%
  • Soy Sauce
  • Dash of Pepper
  • Frozen Green Beans
  • French’s French Fried Onions

How to Make Green Bean Casserole with French Fried Onions

I would recommend making this with frozen green beans as they are freshly picked by the manufacturer before freezing.  You can be put it in the refrigerator to thaw the night before.

This classic side dish is super easy and we make it year-round. So yummy with any chicken dish perfect to take along for a summer picnic or backyard barbecue. For your summer events, you also can make it the day before and pop it in the oven an hour and a half before you leave.

If I am making this dish to take to a party or picnic I would suggest you mix the casserole the night before, I mix all the ingredients together and put it in a casserole. (leave off the topping until you are ready to bake) This way I  have the side dish prepared early in the morning to be put in the oven an hour and a half before you leave.

Easy Green Bean Casserole Side Dish with French Fried Onions in white casserole dish on a green table cloth

The basic time for cooking is about 25 minutes, however, if you have a lot of dishes in the oven and the casserole is cold from the refrigerator I put it in for one hour.  Watch that the topping does not get too brown.

Start by defrosting the green beans, they can be put in the refrigerator the day before or defrosted in the microwave.  I microwave them just enough to make sure they are not frozen.  I have tried to mix the casserole when the green beans are too cold and it starts to freeze the cream of mushroom soup. The green beans are very hard to mix and look like a mess, so make sure they are not frozen when you begin to mix.

Remember this is just 5 ingredients.  The holidays are the perfect time to get the younger generation interested in cooking the family traditions. So get the kids in the kitchen and use this recipe as a good starter for your little ones who want to cook with you.

Easy Green Bean Casserole Side Dish with French Fried Onions in white casserole dish on a green table cloth

In a large bowl mix the cream of mushroom soup, soy sauce, milk, and pepper to make a creamy sauce. Add the defrosted green beans and stir.

Now is the time when you can change up the recipe as your family likes by adding in the french fried onion. Add a little or a lot (our family likes it a lot).

Spray your baking dish and add the green bean mixture. Top with as many french fried onions. The traditional recipe has you only topping with one-third cup on top, but as you can see we cover the casserole with crunchy goodness.  Pop in a preheated onion and bake.

Can Your Microwave Green Bean Casserole?

The traditional recipe for green bean casserole made with cream of mushroom soup calls for it to be baked the in oven. When it is baked in the oven you get the delicious crispy fried onions on the top. And baking in the oven is the better option.

The good news is that if you are in a pinch for time you can use the convenient way of a microwave. If you can make your recipe in a microwave-safe dish you most definitely microwave green bean casserole.

Prepare the casserole as you would for baking. Combine the green beans, creamy mushroom sauce, and all the other delicious ingredients in a microwave-safe casserole bowl and transfer to a microwave-safe casserole dish.

Start by microwaving the casserole for 8 to 10 minutes without the French’s french fried onions. At the end of 8 minutes check for the proper temperature by using n instant-read thermometer to at least 160 degrees. Add more time if needed.

At this point add the crispy onion topping or cheese and add one or two more minutes.

Keep in mind that if you choose the microwave over the oven the texture of the recipe while still having that creamy sauce, may not have the most crunchy topping.

Can I Freeze Green Bean Casserole?

You definitely can freeze green bean casserole after your Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. I like to make a big batch if not two whole casseroles. That was I have a lot of leftover green bean casserole.

You will first want to put the leftover green bean casserole in an airtight container. If you are going to use the casserole dish you baked in you can cover tightly with plastic wrap. But I have found that the best way is to transfer to a smaller airtight container. I prefer a glass container that then can be reheated in the microwave.

You can freeze green bean casserole up to 2 to 3 months in the freezer. However, in our family it would never last that long. As if you are having leftover frozen turkey or ham you have to gragbthe leftover green bean casserole.

The next day when microwaving small portions of leftovers I like to use my reheat setting on the microwave. Check your ovens complete guide for the best setting.

How long Does Green Bean Casserole Last in the Fridge?

As with most baked foods and side dishes I recommend only leaving the green bean casserole in the fridge for no more than 3 day. After 3 day follow the directions for freezing leftovers above.

How to Reheat Green Bean Casserole From Frozen

If you are going to bake the leftover casserole have a  preheated oven to 350°F (175°C). Remove any plastic lid or plastic wrapping. Make sure you have an oven safe dish. At this point it may make an hour to 1.5 hours depending on how big of a casserole you are reheating.

If reheating in the microwave, again remove any plastic wrapping or covering and make sure the casserole is in a microwave-safe dish. Microwave on medium to medium high power for about 5 minutes. If using a reheating setting follow the directions for your microwave. Test for doneness and you may want to stir to make sure the casserole is heated through.

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Easy Green Bean Casserole Side Dish with French Fried Onions

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Description

Classic green bean casserole with cream of mushroom soup and french fried onions.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 can Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom Soup.
  • 1/2 cup Milk (best 1% or 2%)
  • 2 teaspoon Soy Sauce
  • Dash of Pepper
  • 1 bag of frozen Green Beans Thawed 16 oz bag (about 4 cups)
  • 1 container of French’s French Fried Onions about 1/2 of a 6 oz. (1 1/2 – 2cups, 1/2 of the container mix in and 1/2 on top)
  • dash of pepper

Instructions

  1. Mix together the soup, milk, and soy sauce & pepper. Mix this into the Green beans. Add about 1 cup of the French Fried Onion to this mixture, make sure to leave a lot for the top.
  2. Put the mixture in a casserole dish and top with the remaining Onions.
  3. Heat the oven to 350° and bake for 45 min if warm or 90 min if you make ahead and it is cold from the refrigerator.

Notes

  1. The recipe is for a medium casserole dish.  If making a double recipe (2X) in a 13 x 9 glass dish, cold out of the refrigerator, it will take 60 to 90 minutes.
  2. Update for 2021: This recipe tastes the best if made the night before and refrigerated. Make the recipe as above but leave the topping off until ready to cook on Thanksgiving day. 

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 8
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