Recipe: No-Can Green Bean Casserole

by Caitlyn Stace

bunch of fresh green beansIs green bean casserole a culinary icon on your Thanksgiving table? Like many recipes from its era, the traditional dish falls short on our "good-for-you" list. Don't panic! We've given the old recipe an update with an emphasis on fresh ingredients that enhance its flavor. This revision replaces the canned soup with a white sauce full of sliced fresh mushrooms, sweet onions and low-fat milk. Will your guests guess it's not the original-style recipe?

Serve with Cranberry Chicken Bake for a complete meal any day of the year!

Not-a-Can-in-Sight Green Bean Casserole

Prep time: 30 minutes | Total time: 45 minutes | Yield: 8-10 servings

• 3 tablespoons oil, divided
• 1 medium sweet onion, half diced, half thinly sliced
• 8 ounces crimini or white mushrooms, chopped
• 1 tablespoon onion powder
• 1 1/4 teaspoons salt, divided (or less to taste)
• 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
• 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
• 2/3 cup all-purpose flour, divided
• 1 cup low-fat milk
• 1 pound frozen French-cut green beans, (about 4 cups)
• 1/3 cup reduced-fat sour cream
• 3 tablespoons buttermilk powder
• 1 teaspoon paprika
• 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Preheat oven to 400°F. Lighty coat 2 1/2-quart baking dish with oil or spray cooking spray.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the diced onion (keep the sliced aside for later) and cook, stirring often, until it's slightly translucent, about 4 minutes. Stir in mushrooms, onion powder, 1 teaspoon salt, thyme and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the mushroom juices have almost evaporated. Sprinkle 1/3 cup flour over the vegetables and stir to coat. Add milk and bring to a simmer, stirring often.

Stir in green beans and return to a simmer. Cook, stirring, until heated through, about 1 minute. Stir in sour cream and buttermilk powder. Pour into the prepared baking dish.

Whisk the remaining 1/3 cup flour, paprika, garlic powder and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt in a shallow dish. Add the sliced onion; toss to coat. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion along with any remaining flour mixture and cook, turning once or twice, until golden and crispy, 4 to 5 minutes. Spread the onion topping over the casserole.

Bake the casserole until bubbling, about 15 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes before serving.

Cook's note
To minimize mess when coating the onion slices, transfer the flour, paprika, garlic powder and salt to a gallon-size closable bag. Add onions and shake. You might need to prepare extra onion slices to have enough for the casserole. My family migrates to the kitchen with begging puppy-dog eyes when they smell the onion rings cooking.

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