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Healthy Kids Cooking: Green Bean Recipe

VirginiaLynne has been experimenting in the kitchen for almost 50 years. She loves to share her recipes, cooking tips, and reviews.

Making Vegetables Fun!

Green bean and bacon bundles are a wonderful Southern treat but they're high in fat and calories. My 10-year-old daughter and I came up with this terrific remake, which uses turkey bacon and sugar substitute. We are addicted to these and can't make them often enough. Yum!

Ingredients

  • 4 cups green beans, 1 pound fresh, 1 bag frozen or 2 cans
  • 2 slices turkey bacon, cut into pieces, or use 1 slice ham
  • 1 tea garlic salt, add to taste
  • 2 TB to 1/4 cup brown sugar, sugar substitute, maple syrup or honey, add to taste

Your Ratings!

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

5 min

5 min

10 min

4 servings

Instructions

  1. Put package of frozen string beans in microwave and heat on high for 4 minutes. Note: if using fresh beans, you need to cut off the ends of beans, then put in a pot and cover with water. Put on heat and boil for 5 minutes. Drain off hot water (parent's job). For canned string beans: Open can and drain.
  2. Cut the turkey bacon into strips using kitchen scissors.
  3. Put turkey bacon in frypan. Turn heat to medium. Fry and stir with a spatula until bacon sizzles.
  4. Put string beans in pan. Stir with spatula and cook until heated through (about 3 minutes).
  5. Add garlic salt and stir. Add brown sugar and stir. Turn off heat. Your beans are ready! Enjoy!

You Can't Eat Just One!

Want your kids to eat more veggies? These string beans might be the ticket, and your kids can learn to cook them by themselves, which might just make them tastier. In fact, although I often read that you can get your kids to eat vegetables by getting your children involved in making healthy foods, but there aren't very many recipes out there for kids to cook that they like.

Kid Created Recipe

My daughter Sophie, who is 10, and I made up this recipe together. Oh my goodness, this is so good! We make it almost every day and fight over the last serving. Sophie told me the other day that she thought these tasted almost as good as dessert. She's right. I'm now looking forward to these as one of my favorite parts of dinner. Even my oldest daughter, who is vegetably "challenged" (in spite of the fact that I did everything right with her as a baby, making her eat peas before pears etc.!), admitted, "You know, these are actually pretty good. Do you have any more?"

Fresh, Frozen, or Canned String Beans

If you have fresh beans from your garden or the store, that is the best, but it does take extra time to cut off the ends and boil them in water. So generally, I buy frozen long string beans and microwave them for four minutes in the bag before we pan fry them. I've also used canned beans in a pinch, although they aren't as good.

Turkey Bacon or Ham

We love turkey bacon in our household, and I usually have some on hand. However, when I don't, I use a slice or two of cooked lunch meat ham. After frying it up in the pan, it tastes delicious.

Brown Sugar or Artificial Sweetener

A touch of brown sugar gets a little caramelized in this recipe and is the final touch. We've also found that artificial sweeteners taste great. We've used Stevia, Equal, and tonight I tried sugar-free maple syrup. We like Mrs. Butterworth's best. It was very good. I'm sure regular maple syrup would be wonderful too.

Comments

Virginia Kearney (author) from United States on June 03, 2012:

I love these green beans myself!

Virginia Kearney (author) from United States on June 03, 2012:

Carter--I really like your raisins in orange juice idea. I think that might work for several sorts of vegetables. Thanks!

prozema on June 03, 2012:

My kids are adults, but I am going to try this recipe!

Mary from Cronulla NSW on June 02, 2012:

Virginia this is a fantastic idea for kid's and even though I don't have little kids now am keen to try for my older vegie challenged son...when mine were little for a salad I used to soak raisins in orange juice and pour over very finely shredded silverbeet/spinach & sesame seeds to garnish, it's a hard vegie to disguise but this seemed to work & you can add coursely grated carrot or cashew nuts for texture...and good old honey carrots are usually devoured...voted up and awesome...thanks for sharing