You've gathered green beans from the garden, farmers market, or grocery store – now what? If they're not going in your favorite bean dish, you can store green beans a number of ways. We'll share how to keep green beans fresh or preserve them for later use.
How to Store Green Beans (Fresh)
Store fresh green beans in the fridge, preferably in the crisper drawer. I don't wash them until we're ready to use them, since extra moisture encourages mold.
For best quality, use within seven days. (Keep in mind that grocery store beans will not last as long as fresh picked.) I store in plastic bags or containers to help keep them from drying out.
Freezing Green Beans
To prepare beans for freezing, rinse the beans under running water and trim off any brown spots or damage. If you like, cut the beans into bite sized lengths.
Blanch the green beans by placing them in boiling water for three minutes and then moving them into an ice bath. Blanching the beans in hot water helps to keep their vibrant green color and firm texture.
Drain the beans and pat dry with a paper towel or lint free kitchen towel. Pack in freezer bags and date and label before freezing. To help prevent freezer burn, you can pre-freeze beans on a baking sheet and vacuum seal the beans.
Store green beans in the freezer for up to a year.
For more details and step by step photos, see: Freezing Fresh Green Beans With or Without Blanching, Step by Step Instructions
Dehydrating Green Beans
To dehydrate green bean pods, blanch and pat dry as above. Place in a single layer on dehydrator trays.
Dry at 125F for 8-12 hours. Beans should be tough and leathery.
See “Home Food Drying” for more information on different drying options, including oven drying.
Freeze Drying Green Beans
When I freeze dry green beans, I either blanch them, or cook as if preparing the beans for a meal. I use the automatic cycle on the freeze dryer.
It'll take around 30-40 hours to freeze dry beans in your home freeze dryer.
Green beans are low acid, so you must use a pressure canner, unless you add acid. See How to Can Green Beans in a pressure canner, for plain beans.
This recipe adds vinegar for acidity and is safe to can in a water bath canner – Pickled Dilly Beans with Garlic.
Store canned green beans in a cool, dark location and use within 18 months for best quality.
These Quick and Easy Fermented Dilly Beans are so good! There's no heat processing, so they stay nice and crisp.
More Beany Goodness
Be sure to check out our bean related gardening articles, including:
This article is written by Laurie Neverman. Laurie grew up in the kitchen, learning baking and home cooking from her momma. At age 15, she and her mom and two sisters created Irene’s Custom Cakes & Catering, which was her summer job through most of high school and college.
Now she combines old fashioned recipes, garden fresh produce, and cooking for special diets to make tasty, easy to prepare foods. Along with her passion for growing nutrient dense food, she also enjoys ancient history, adorable ducks, and lifelong learning.