Harvest of the Month: Green Beans

When we think green beans, we often think of mashed potatoes and meat—it’s a comfort food! Green beans are a part of the legume family, with more than 130 varieties of them. They are the third most popular garden plant behind tomatoes and peppers, likely because they are easy to grow and care for.

Green beans are rich in proteins, healthy carbs, and dietary fibers. They also contain vitamins B, C, and K. These vegetables must be cooked before eaten!

How to Select

Green beans should be crisp and firm without any soft spots or signs of discoloring. You can buy them fresh in the produce section, frozen, or canned.

How to Store

Store fresh green beans in a refrigerated plastic bag. If you’re going to store them for very long, put a paper towel in the bag to absorb any extra moisture. Too much moisture makes green beans spoil quicker.

How to Prepare

Green beans contain poisonous amounts of lectins when eaten raw, but cooking kills these harmful proteins. One way to prepare green beans is to blanch them quickly in salted, boiling water. When finished, the green beans will turn bright green. Transfer them to an ice bath, pat them dry, and dress them with olive oil and lemon.

Try green beans in the recipe for Green Bean Salad from Eating Well.

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