French’s green bean casserole is a classic side dish for holiday meals and potlucks. Make this easy recipe in just 45 minutes!
There are some classic dishes that make their way onto holiday tables year after year. On Easter, many people serve a glazed holiday ham or leg of lamb, along with hot cross buns.
Thanksgiving is no different. If you ask 10 people what they plan to serve for Thanksgiving dinner, it’s likely that 8 of them will say it’s roasted turkey.
Then ask those same people about their favorite Thanksgiving side dishes. Chances are good that you’ll hear about roasted mashed potatoes and/or stuffing, and cranberry sauce. You’ll also have several people say that they’re serving green bean casserole. It’s a traditional, classic holiday side for many Americans.
French’s green bean casserole
The late Dorcas Reilly, a chef working in what is now called the Campbell’s soup company test kitchen created the original green bean casserole recipe back in 1955.
Because the recipe is simple, uses inexpensive ingredients and can be made ahead of time, it’s the perfect holiday side dish!
Simply mix fresh, frozen, or canned green beans with condensed cream of mushroom soup and shredded cheese, then top it with French’s fried onions and bake until it’s warm and bubbly.
Making a casseroles doesn’t get much simpler than that!
Ingredient notes and substitutions
Note: This is just a partial list of ingredients. For the full list and amounts, see the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
- Green beans – Many people use canned green beans, but not everyone likes the texture or flavor. If you’ll be using fresh, be sure to blanch them in salted water first. Frozen green beans work as well, but you’ll have to thaw them first.
PRO TIP: Substituting fresh or frozen beans for canned
4 cups of green beans is equal to about 1 1/2 pounds fresh, 16 ounces frozen or two 15oz. cans.
- Cheddar cheese – Always shred your own cheese from a fresh block if you’re able to. Pre-bagged shreds contain an anti-caking agent that prevents the cheese from clumping, but also prevents it from melting properly.
- Crispy Fried Onions – For many people, this is what makes French’s green bean casserole so special! Crispy, salty strips of fried onion add flavor and crunch to the creamy vegetables. If you prefer, you can use homemade french fried onions.
- Condensed cream of mushroom soup – I like to use homemade condensed cream of mushroom soup because it’s easy to make and I know exactly what’s in it. However, feel free to use canned if you prefer.
Video: making French’s green bean casserole
This recipe is very simple to make, but if you need help, watch the video located in the recipe card below.
- Double the recipe: If needed, you can easily double the ingredients and use a 9×13 pan. Increase the baking time by about 10 minutes as well.
- Storage – Cover leftovers with foil or transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for 3-5 days.
- Reheating – Heat individual servings in the microwave, or use the oven or toaster oven to get the onion topping crispy again.
Make ahead instructions for French’s green bean casserole
There are a few different ways to make this green bean casserole recipe ahead of time, depending on what your schedule is like and when you’ll need to serve it.
No matter which method you choose, leave off the crispy onions so they don’t become soggy. Add them during the last few minutes of reheating so they can get crunchy and golden brown.
- Bake and refrigerate: Allow the dish to cool before covering with foil and placing it in the refrigerator up to 3 days in advance. Heat in the oven until warmed through.
- Without baking first: Prepare the green bean casserole recipe according to the instructions, then cover and place in the refrigerator up to 24 hours in advance. Bake as directed just before serving.
- Freezing: It’s not recommended to freeze the baked casserole because it can become watery and soggy. Instead, add the green bean mixture to the pan, cover with foil, and freeze for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to serve, bake from frozen for about double the listed time or until bubbly and warmed through.
To avoid having your casserole dish stuck in the freezer, use a foil pan instead. Or, line your casserole dish with foil first, so you can lift the whole casserole out of the pan once frozen. Then, place it right back in the pan when you’re ready to bake!
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This post, first published on Kevin is Cooking on Oct. 26, 2020, was last updated with new content on Oct. 20, 2021.
French’s Green Bean Casserole + Video
- 3 1/2 cups green beans (See Note 1)
- 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese freshly grated
- 6 oz French's Crispy Fried Onions
- 1 1/4 cup condensed cream of mushroom soup (See Note 2)
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp fresh black pepper
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- In a bowl whisk together the condensed soup, Worcestershire sauce, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, salt and black pepper until mixed thoroughly. Gently stir in the milk and cheese. Add green beans and gently toss to mix thoroughly.
- Pour into a 9×9” casserole pan sprayed with cooking spray and sprinkle with more black pepper if desired.
- Bake uncovered for 30 minutes. Pull from oven and top with crispy onions. Bake for another 5 minutes until top is golden brown and crispy. Allow to rest 5 minutes before serving.
- If using fresh green beans: Blanch trimmed green beans in boiling, salted water for 8 minutes. Remove with slotted spoon and shock in a bowl of ice water to cool and keep bright color. Drain and set aside. If using frozen green beans: allow to thaw before using. If using canned green beans: use 2- 14.5 oz cans, drain before using.
- I have a homemade recipe to make your own cream of mushroom soup if you prefer over canned.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
Can you cook day before and then reheat and put on french onion rings.
Yes, but be sure to let come to room temp before!
So if I wanted to make this beforehand, and I am blanching fresh green beans. Do I blanch, combine the sauce, and then put in fridge and bake it the next day? Does that ruin the purpose of blanching the green beans?
No, the color should hold Kyle.
Hi Kevin, this looks AMAZING, and cannot wait to make this homemade version for Thanksgiving this week! Hope you can answer my quick question with whether to double your homemade version of cream of mushroom soup if I’m making it for 6 people? Seems like so, but not sure?! Thanks much and so happy to have stumbled upon your wonderful site!!
Hi Diane! If you’re needing enough for 6 people, then you’ll only need one batch of my condensed cream of mushroom soup. That yields the equivalent of one can, and this recipe makes enough green bean casserole for six people. If you’re wanting to double the servings, then yes, you would need to make a double of soup. Hope this helps. Thanks for coming and I hope you’ll visit again soon. Happy Thanksgiving!
Looks perfect for Thanksgiving
Always on the table year round, actually. Never can get enough Charlie!
I love a good green bean casserole. This will be added to my Thanksgiving menu this year! Thank you!
Thank you! I cannot wait to make it!
This is my go to recipe for green beans love it!