Crack Green Beans Recipe

The recipe for “Crack Green Beans” is a popular side dish that combines the flavors of bacon, onions, and a sweet and savory sauce. Here are the key steps and ingredients for making this dish:

Can I Substitute The Bacon With Another Ingredient?


Pancetta is an Italian cured meat that is very similar to bacon, but it is not smoked. It can be used as a 1:1 substitute for bacon in recipes. The key differences are:

  • Pancetta is not smoked, so it has a more subtle, delicate flavor compared to bacon’s stronger smoky taste
  • Pancetta is often sold in thick slices or cubes and has a tender, melt-in-your-mouth texture when cooked

To use pancetta as a bacon substitute, you may want to briefly boil it for 2-3 minutes to further reduce any smokiness. Pancetta is commonly used in Italian dishes like carbonara and amatriciana.

Pork Belly

Thinly slice some pork belly and fry it with salt and sugar until caramelized. This will give you a similar flavor and texture to bacon. The pork belly fat will also provide the richness that bacon contributes.


Mushrooms are a great vegetarian option to replace bacon. They soak up flavors easily and provide a meaty texture. Portobellos, shiitake or king oyster mushrooms work well. For extra crispiness, dehydrate the mushrooms before seasoning and cooking.

Tempeh Bacon

Tempeh is a fermented soy product that makes an excellent vegan bacon substitute. Slice it into strips and marinate in a mixture of oil, maple syrup, soy sauce, liquid smoke and smoked paprika. Then bake or fry until crispy.

The key is to use a fat for browning, like vegetable oil or lard, and add smoky and salty flavors with ingredients like smoked paprika, liquid smoke, or a bit of soy sauce. Pork belly or mushrooms can provide the meaty texture and umami flavor that bacon contributes.

What Are Some Variations Of This Recipe?

The concept of variations in recipes is a key aspect of cooking and meal planning. Variations allow cooks to adapt a basic recipe to suit different tastes, dietary needs, or occasions. Here are some examples of variations from different recipes:

  1. Basic Muffins With Variations: Add 1 cup of well-drained pineapple, chopped walnuts, 2 mashed bananas, or 1 1/2 tablespoons of orange zest to create different flavor profiles
  2. Panzanella Salad: Use different dressings such as basil pesto, tarragon-caper vinaigrette, spicy ginger dressing, or tahini dressing to give the salad a unique flavor
  3. Icebox Cakes: Combine sweetened mascarpone cheese and whipped cream with various flavor combinations like chocolatey, fruity, or simple to create different desserts
  4. Chicken Dishes: Prepare chicken breasts with different marinades, such as lemon-herb or spicy ginger, and pair them with different salads and desserts for a variety of meals
  5. Simple and Delicious Dishes: Transform a main dish into an appetizer or vice versa, and use different presentation styles to create distinct variations

These examples illustrate how variations can be used to create a wide range of dishes from a single Bicol Express Recipe.

Crack Green Beans Recipe

Recipe by Samuel MerrickCourse: LunchCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time




Total time





1 lb fresh green beans, washed, ends trimmed
5-6 slices bacon, chopped
1/4 cup onion, diced
1/2 cup ketchup
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp garlic powder (optional)
1 Tbsp soy sauce (optional)


  • 2 cans of cut green beans (drained)

  • 1/4 cup onion, diced

  • 5-6 slices of bacon, chopped

  • 1/2 cup ketchup

  • 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar


  • Preheat Oven: Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Place the green beans in a casserole dish and set aside.
  • Cook Bacon and Onions: Cook the chopped bacon in a skillet over medium-high heat until crispy. Drain most of the fat and then add the diced onion. Cook until the onion is softened.
  • Add Sauce: Stir in the ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, and brown sugar. Simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  • Bake: Pour the sauce over the green beans and gently mix. Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes
  • Using Frozen Green Beans: Frozen green beans can be used, but they should be thawed first.
  • Using Fresh Green Beans: Fresh green beans can be used, but they should be boiled for 10 minutes and then drained before proceeding with the recipe.
  • Storing Leftovers: Leftover Crack Green Beans can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days.
  • Holiday Side Dishes: This recipe is a great addition to holiday meals, and it pairs well with other dishes like Cheesy Potato Casserole, Apple Sausage Stuffing, and Cranberry Orange Sauce.
  • Additional Recipes:
    Air Fryer Green Beans:
    For a healthier version, try using an air fryer to cook the green beans with a sweet and savory glaze.
    Italian Green Beans: This recipe uses fresh green beans, garlic, and Italian seasonings for a flavorful side dish.
    Roasted Potatoes and Green Beans: Combine roasted potatoes and green beans with a sweet and savory sauce for a hearty side dish.

Recipe Video

Leave a Comment