Sautéed green beans and tomatoes require just 4 ingredients and make for an easy, healthy and flavorful dinner side dish!
My grandmother, who we called Jamma, had gorgeous hands, I always thought.
They were wrinkly, old lady hands, to be sure, but she had long, slender fingers and a plethora of rings and bracelets that made her hands jingle and dance when she used them.
And she used them a lot. She was always keeping busy – or at least talking and gesturing.
I can picture her hands in a mixing bowl, or cleaning some raw chicken or turkey, or stirring a pot. If it wasn’t food, she always had a book, a sewing project, a drink if it was that time of day. (She was a bourbon drinker like me 😊)
And one task I could help with, even when I was young, was snapping beans.
We’d sit side by side at a table with a bowl between us for the beans and a discard bowl for the ends. I would fumble and fiddle with my beans, trying to snap off the ends and snap the long ones in half.
She worked effortlessly, efficiently, snapping and chatting and never missing a beat.
I feel like we ate a lot of green beans. Green beans are kind-of a Southern staple. Mostly, we cook them to death. 😂
I remember when I was older and I first asked my mom, over the phone probably, how long to cook green beans and she said with a sort-of shrug, “25 minutes. Or 30 or more. However long you let them go…” It’s not a precise kind of thing, cooking green beans to death.
Some people can only do the really cooked, tender, super soft green beans. Others prefer them with some crispness. I can honestly go both ways.
These green beans and tomatoes though are one of the cook-the-fool-out-of-the-beans recipes so that they are melt-in-your-mouth tender.
And combined with the tomatoes, it’s a great, easy recipe with just a few ingredients but tons of flavor.
A few notes on these sautéed green beans and tomatoes:
- I used a regular can of diced tomatoes, but you could substitute stewed tomatoes, fire-roasted diced tomatoes, petit diced tomatoes or another flavor if you want to change this recipe up a bit.
- You can let the green beans simmer for as long as you need on low, if you’re working on the rest of dinner. Or doing homework with the kids. Or got distracted by Facebook.
- You could top these green beans with Parmesan cheese or crumbled bacon – or both.
Here’s to precious family food memories and to hoping I love my old lady hands when I have them as much as I did my grandmothers.
And be sure to check out my fellow Recipe Redux members below and see their food memory recipes.
What’s one of your favorite food memories? I’d love to hear from you – leave a comment below!
Sautéed green beans and tomatoes
Sautéed green beans and tomatoes are an easy, healthy and flavorful side dish!
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1/2 small onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups fresh green beans, trimmed (about 3/4 pound)
- 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes (undrained)
- 1/3 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Add onion and saute for 3-4 minutes.
- Add garlic and green beans and saute 3-4 minutes more minutes.
- Add undrained tomatoes, salt and pepper and stir to combine. Cover and reduce heat to medium low. Let simmer for at least 20 minutes and up to 30 or 40 minutes, until green beans are tender. Stir occasionally.
- Taste and adjust seasonings and serve hot.
Recipe NotesI used a regular can of diced tomatoes, but you could substitute stewed tomatoes, fire-roasted diced tomatoes, petit diced tomatoes or another flavor if you want to change this recipe up a bit.
You could top these green beans with grated Parmesan cheese or crumbled, cooked bacon - or both.