Monday, November 25, 2013

The Ultimate Green Bean Casserole with cheese and bacon!

This is a holiday side dish staple at our house.  I've always loved the traditional green bean casserole, but some people in my house don't like onions.  I wanted to find a recipe that would get them to eat some vegetables during the holiday. I've adapted this recipe over the years to make it cleaner and then to make it gluten free.

Originally it featured Kraft Garlic Cheese.  If you've never seen such a thing, it was a processed cheese that came in a plastic tube.  I think it was really popular in Southern Louisiana because it was a prominent ingredient in a Spinach Madeline recipe.   It's no longer available, at least not here in Missouri, so I substitute Old English Cheese.  I realize this is still very much in the processed food category, but it's only once or twice a year and the Old English Cheese is a tasty substitute for the garlic cheese.

You are welcome to use canned cream of mushroom, but the homemade, gluten free version is really so much better.

The Ultimate Green Bean Casserole

2 (14oz) bags of frozen green beans
1 jar of Old English cheese
8 to 10 slices bacon
1 can cream of mushroom soup or Cream of Mushroom, below
1 large onion chopped
black pepper to taste

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, divided


1. Saute onion in butter and add green beans with 2 slices of bacon.

2. Meanwhile, cook 8 to 10 slices of bacon in microwave and drain on paper towel.

3. Once green beans are tender crisp, remove cooked bacon and add cut up garlic cheese, stir until melted. (Only takes a minute.). Add cut up, cooked bacon to beans and 1/4 cup of the cheese and fold in cream of mushroom soup.

4. Top with more bacon and cheese.

5. Pour into greased casserole dish and bake at 350 degrees until golden brown on top, approximately 30 minutes.

Gluten Free Cream of Mushroom

8 ounces fresh sliced mushrooms, finely diced
1/4 cup finely diced sweet onions
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup gluten-free chicken broth
1 cup whole milk
1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
1/4 teaspoon pepper or to taste

1. Saute mushrooms, onions and garlic with butter in a 3 quart saucepan over medium heat for about 3 minutes. 

2. Gradually stir in gluten-free chicken broth and stir to blend. Add 1/2 cup milk and continue to cook over medium heat. 

3. Once hot, add other 1/2 cup milk stirred together with cornstarch.  Bring to a boil and reduce heat and cook until soup thickens. 

4. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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