Fresh Green Bean Salad

This cold green bean salad recipe has been a favorite for years. It’s one of the best ways to enjoy fresh green beans. We toss the beans with a simple shallot vinaigrette and finish with crispy fried shallots. A delicious and easy salad!

Easy Green Bean Salad

This easy green bean salad comes together fast, works for all occasions, and is vegan. We start with perfectly blanched green beans and toss them with a simple shallot vinaigrette.

I love adding a handful of crispy fried shallots (a nod to green bean casserole). You can use store-bought fried shallots or fried onions. Or make your own – here’s our 15-minute fried shallots recipe.

Green Bean Salad with Crispy Shallots

How to make cold green bean salad

For the best green bean salad, blanch your green beans. To do it, add the green beans to a large pot with boiling salted water and cook for a few minutes. You are looking for them to turn bright green. When testing one, you want the bean to be crisp tender, with some crunch left.

When they are ready, plunge them into ice cold water to stop the cooking. Now, the beans are ready to toss with our simple shallot dressing.

For the shallot vinaigrette, simply whisk minced shallots with Dijon mustard, wine vinegar (we’ve used red wine, white wine, and champagne vinegar to make this), olive oil, salt, and fresh ground black pepper.

After whisking, the dressing will be creamy, a bit punchy, and perfect for almost any salad, especially this one with green beans.

This green bean salad is delicious with just the green beans and dressing, but if you really want to take it up a notch, throw on a handful of crispy fried shallots just before serving. The combo of green beans and crispy fried shallots is a classic.

Take green bean salad to the next level

Some stores sell crispy shallots, so if you can find them, feel free to use them for this simple salad. You can also make them. They’re easy to make and last for a week or more, which means you can add them to other dishes like mashed potatoes, sautéed green beans, and soups.

Making crispy fried shallots

One bonus of making fried shallots is that you’re left with delicious shallot oil. Use the oil to make our shallot vinaigrette, adding even more flavor. I also love it for roasting meats and veggies or as the base for bread dipping oil.

Green bean salad variations

This green bean salad is perfect served as a side for many meals. I personally think it’s just as perfect in the summer as it is during the holidays! As with many of our salad recipes, there are plenty of variations you can make to this simple green bean salad. Here are a few of my favorites:

Cold green bean salad

Fresh Green Bean Salad

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This cold green bean salad recipe has been a favorite for years. It’s one of the best ways to enjoy fresh green beans. We toss the beans with a simple shallot vinaigrette and finish with crispy fried shallots (optional). Buy fried shallots or make them, here’s our easy crispy fried shallots recipe.

Makes 6 servings

You Will Need

1 pound green beans or small haricots verts

1 tablespoon minced shallots

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar, white wine vinegar or champagne vinegar

4 tablespoons olive oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper

Crispy fried shallots, optional, our recipe for fried shallots


    1Trim ends from green beans and leave them whole. Prepare a bowl filled with cold water and ice.

    2Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, then add the green beans. Cook until bright green but still crisp. I check for doneness after 2 minutes, then add additional time as needed. Depending on how thin the beans are, they will need 2 to 4 minutes.

    3Drain the beans and toss them into the ice water.

    4Whisk the minced shallots, mustard, vinegar, olive oil, a pinch of salt, and a pinch of pepper in the bottom of a salad bowl. Taste, then adjust with more salt and pepper if needed.

    5Toss in the green beans, then serve with crispy shallots sprinkled on top (optional).

Adam and Joanne's Tips

  • Instead of crispy shallots, try frying up some minced or sliced garlic for a green bean salad with crispy garlic.
  • The salad will last up to a day in the fridge, after that, it will still taste delicious, but the beans will lose some of their bright green color.
  • Nutrition Facts: The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We have used the USDA database to calculate approximate values.
Nutrition Per Serving Serving Size 1/6 of the dish / Calories 127 / Total Fat 10g / Saturated Fat 1.4g / Cholesterol 0mg / Sodium 105.2mg / Carbohydrate 9.6g / Dietary Fiber 3.5g / Total Sugars 4.4g / Protein 2.6g
AUTHOR:  Adam and Joanne Gallagher
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3 comments… Leave a Review
  • DeeJay April 15, 2023, 12:19 pm

    Sounds wonderful. I’ve added green beans and shallots to my grocery list. Thank you.

  • Sue R September 12, 2019, 8:09 pm

    Handy tip for when anyone making this is short on time is that in Asian supermarkets you can buy fried shallots or garlic in little jars and they keep for ages. They are lovely and crunchy. Wouldn’t be as great as freshly made of course.

  • Janie Barnett Listengart July 30, 2019, 12:30 pm

    Yummy green bean recipe


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