Sometimes I just crave a big serving of green beans. You too, right?
Hear me out. Green beans are one of my favorite veggie-based meals. They are loaded with vitamins, particularly C, A and harder-to-get K and have only 30 calories a serving. But here is the real reason why I love green beans: They are a particularly filling vegetable, thanks to high fiber and a few grams of protein.
So that means that my kids can load up on green beans and add a couple of ounces of rotisserie chicken on the side for a quick dinner that doesn't have them hungry again in an hour.
We'll eat green beans tossed in a little olive oil, salt and pepper and roasted for 15 minutes at 400 degrees, or even simply steamed with a little salt and pepper as a side dish.
But if the beans are the star of the show for a meatless meal, I like a little more fanfare and do a simple glazed vegetable dish: Simply cook veggies and aromatics (such as onion, garlic, spices or ginger) in a little oil in a large saute pan, add a little liquid — soy sauce, broth or fruit juice work well — and cover the pan to steam for a couple of minutes, then uncover to allow the liquid to evaporate into a glaze that coats the veggies.
The strategy works for all sorts of vegetables, but start with my crave-worthy Garlic Green Beans to get the hang of it. Serve this bean dish with some quinoa or brown rice and you may not miss the meat. But if you want, add small cubes of chicken or tofu to the saute pan first to cook through, or just add some leftover cooked chicken at the end.
Either way, I'll bet you'll be craving green beans, too.