Green beans are relatively easy to grow and super easy to preserve. I freeze mine, it’s quick and easy. They thaw very fast and are ready to turn into a simple side dish in minutes.
I usually make a simple side dish of green beans and garlic. This is how we eat them 90% of the times. My kids love eating them as a snack too. They will eat them straight from the garden, or I can keep some in the fridge and they’ll munch on them during the day between meals.
I got my green beans in the garden very late this year because we moved out to the country in June. It took a few weeks before we came around to set up the new garden. The soil is awful and there were so many bugs around that I was surprised I even got beans at all let alone enough to freeze.
But we were lucky to harvest enough to eat a couple of times and then a few servings to freeze.
Here is How to Freeze Green Beans:
I start by cutting both ends and cutting them in the half…
While you work on the beans, go ahead and start boiling a pot of water. To the boiling water, add the beans and let them cook for a minute or two. Don’t add too many beans. I usually divide the amount I have into batches (the amount I want to freeze) and then work with one batch at a time.
From the boiling water, you supposed to transfer them into am ice bath, but since my freezer doesn’t have an ice maker I just scoop them up with a slotted spoon to a colander in the sink and run some cold water on them. It works.
I move them around (be careful, they are hot!) and run the cold water over them until they cool down.
From the sink, I transfer the batch onto a dry kitchen towel to dry. This is important, you want to make sure the beans are as dry as you can get them to be before freezing them.
Next, I place them in a ziplock bag in the freezer.
When they are frozen, I transfer them into a vacuum bag and use the food vacuum machine to suck all the air out and seal the bag. I do this because if you just try to vacuum the beans and seal them right after they dried on the towel, it most likely won’t work because the vacuum will squeeze water out of them and the machine won’t be able to vacuum and seal it right because of the water.
**Update – I found a new way of doing this without freezing the beans first. You fold a paper towel and put it inside the bag at the top. When the water squeezes out of the beans it soaks in the paper towel and the vacuum machine can seal the bag.
They go in the freezer and will probably be good for the next year. I don’t know for sure because we always end up eating them within a few months.
Don’t forget to label the bag! I always tell myself that I am going to remember what’s in the bag, but after it’s frozen I usually can’t tell what’s in there.
I will need to grow many more plants next year if I want to have enough beans for the whole year, but it is one of those crops where I can see it happen pretty easily. We can be self-sufficient when it comes to green beans soon!