This easy Green Bean Casserole recipe is made from scratch with fresh green beans, homemade crispy onions, and a gluten-free and vegan cream of mushroom soup. Learn how easy it is to make a family favorite Paleo, vegan, vegetarian, dairy-free and gluten-free Christmas and Thanksgiving side dish recipe.
Green Bean Casserole from Scratch
Most people associate green bean casserole with mushy canned beans, canned soup, and packaged sodium-rich fried onions that could give you a heart attack after eating just one.
But if you’ve never made this Thanksgiving dish completely from scratch, then your tastebuds (and waistline!) are in for a delightful treat.
Not to mention, if you happen to be gluten-free, vegan, or dairy-free, you normally can’t eat this dish anyways!!
What-the-what? Yup. Most green bean casseroles are loaded with wheat in the fried onions and dairy in the sauce.
So to break it down, the recipe you’ll find below is so-freaking-amazing for a few reasons:
- It’s made with fresh green beans, not canned or frozen.
- A homemade cream of mushroom soup recipe is used that is 100% vegan.
- The French fried onions are baked instead of fried and completely gluten-free.
- It is super easy to make ahead of time for that busy Thanksgiving Day!
So read on to learn how to make one of your new FAVORITE Thanksgiving recipes.
How to Make
As mentioned previously, it is rather easy to make a green bean casserole from scratch.
However, it does require a few simple steps.
If you are not vegan and gluten-free, you can always buy a canned cream of mushroom soup or the French fried onions.
But if you go the extra mile and make it all from scratch – it will be SO worth your time!
4 Steps to Make Green Bean Casserole from Scratch:
- Parboil fresh green beans – this step is crucial in making sure the green beans come out tender in the casserole.
- Bake French fried onions in the oven – baking the French fried onions in the oven means no deep-frying is required! (So yes… Less calories and fat!)
- Make a gluten-free and vegan cream of mushroom soup – once again, this is not required if you are not vegan, gluten-free, or dairy-free.
- Assemble the green bean casserole and then bake it in the oven.
What Type of Green Beans?
There are so many choices, but what type of green beans are best to use in this green bean casserole recipe?
You will definitely want to buy FRESH green beans.
Do not buy canned green beans or frozen green beans. Both of these will need varying degrees of time in the oven and will NOT work well in this recipe.
You can either buy the green beans that come in bags in the produce section that have already been trimmed, or you can buy your green beans in bulk and trim the ends yourself. Either way, you will need about 24 ounces, or 1-1/2 pounds.
Parboiling Green Beans
Numerous test rounds were done to come up with this green bean casserole recipe and one thing was abundantly clear:
You MUST parboil the fresh green beans!
Trust me, I tried to skip this step to make this recipe even easier, and it did NOT work.
What is parboiling?
Think of it as PARtially boiling your green beans before they get baked as a casserole in the oven.
This step ensures the green beans and French fried onions are perfectly cooked.
Homemade Cream of Mushroom Soup Recipe
Say goodbye to the canned stuff because making a homemade cream of mushroom soup is super easy to do. A few ingredients you will need include:
- Mushrooms: White button mushrooms that are found in a box in your grocery’s refrigerated produce section work best. You can buy them already sliced or whole.
- Oil: Some type of fat or oil must be used. If you are vegan, olive oil or vegan butter sticks will work great. If you are not vegan, butter will also work well.
- Starch: Tapioca starch and arrowroot starch were both tested in this recipe. Cornstarch will also work well. (Both of these options are completely gluten-free!)
- Broth: If you are vegan, use vegetable broth. If you are not vegan, you can use chicken broth.
- Dairy-free milk: Almond milk and cashew milk were both tested and will work great in this recipe. You can also use soy milk, too.
Once you’ve got your ingredients, you’ll want to follow these step-by-step instructions:
- Add your mushrooms and oil to a large skillet and saute for a few minutes.
- Whisk together the starch and warmed broth to form a starch slurry in a separate small bowl.
Cook’s Tip: Heating the broth is very important! This step ensures there are no large clumps of starch in your cream of mushroom soup.
- Add the slurry to the sauteed mushrooms, whisking well while adding.
- Add the milk while whisking after each addition.
- Simmer the cream of mushroom soup recipe until slightly thickened and it sticks to the back of your spatula or spoon.
Baked French Fried Onions
Making homemade French fried onions are SO much better, and better FOR you, than the canned kind.
However, if you are rushed on time, you can always skip this step and use French’s fried onions, instead.
A few key ingredients you will need to make baked French fried onions:
- Onions: My personal preference is a small sweet onion, but you can also use a yellow onion or red onion.
- Starch: You can use whatever kind of starch you used for the cream of mushroom soup.
- Almond meal: Make sure you buy BLANCHED almond meal and not natural almond meal. Also, certain brands will be a bit more gritty and others will have a smoother texture. Bob’s Red Mill’s almond meal is my personal favorite to use.
- You can also use an all-purpose flour or gluten-free 1-to-1 flour blend, instead.
Once you have all of your ingredients, you will first toss your onion slices in a bit of olive oil. Next, you will whisk together the starch, almond meal, salt and pepper and sprinkle it over the coated onion slices.
Lay your onion slices on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, making sure they do not overlap, and bake in a 400 degree oven for 20-25 minutes.
The French fried onions will continue crisping up after being place on the casserole, so bake them until they JUST start to brown on the edges.
Now that you have parboiled the green beans, made the homemade cream of mushroom soup, and baked the French fried onions, it is time to assemble this green been casserole recipe.
- Toss the parboiled green beans in the vegan cream of mushroom soup and pour them into a 9 x 13 inch baking dish or a 3-quart oval baking dish.
- Cook’s Tip: A 9 x 13 inch baking dish will give you crispier onions.
- Next, layer on your previously baked onions.
- Bake the green bean casserole in a 350 degree oven UNCOVERED for 25 minutes.
- If you would like your onions a little more crispy, bake the casserole for 5 more minutes.
The best way to make this recipe ahead of time is to prepare the French fried onions, cream of mushroom soup, and parboiled green beans at one time and place them all in the baking dish.
Cover the uncooked green bean casserole with aluminum foil, or a lid, and store in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours in advance.
On Thanksgiving or Christmas morning, pull out the green bean casserole at least 2 hours in advance. You will want the casserole to come close to room temperature before baking it in the oven.
Cook’s Tip: The best way to reheat already cooked green bean casserole is to return it to a 350 degree oven for 15-20 minutes, or until it is heated through.
Healthy Thanksgiving Side Dish Recipes:
- Southern Cornbread Dressing Recipe
- Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole
- Ultra Crispy Smashed Potatoes
- Crispy Brussel Sprouts with Bacon
- Fresh Cranberry Orange Sauce
Green Bean Casserole Recipe | Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free
This easy Green Bean Casserole recipe is made from scratch with fresh green beans, homemade crispy onions, and a gluten-free and vegan cream of mushroom soup.
- 24 oz. green beans fresh, ends trimmed
French Fried Onions:
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 sweet onion thinly sliced
- ⅓ cup almond meal blanched, or all purpose flour
- 2 Tbsp. arrowroot starch
- ½ tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. pepper
Cream of Mushroom Soup:
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil divided
- ½ cup sweet onion finely diced
- 4 oz. mushrooms
- 3 cloves garlic crushed
- 3 Tbsp. tapioca starch or cornstarch
- ½ cup vegetable broth or chicken broth, warm
- 1 - 1 ½ cups milk cashew, soy, or almond milk
- 1 tsp. salt
- ½ tsp. pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add green beans, reduce to medium, and boil for 6-7 minutes. Remove beans from water and place in a 13 x 9 inch* or 3 quart baking dish that has been coated with non-stick cooking spray.
French Fried Onions:
In a medium bowl, toss thinly sliced sweet onion in 1 tablespoon olive oil. In a small bowl whisk together the almond meal, 2 tablespoons starch, ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Sprinkle coating mixture onto onions and toss to combine.
Place onion slices on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Bake onions in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, flipping halfway through.
Cream of Mushroom Soup:
While onions are baking, add 2 tablespoons olive oil, mushrooms, and ½ cup diced onion into a medium skillet over medium heat. Saute for 2-3 minutes.
Add crushed garlic cloves and continue sautéing for 1 minute. Reduce heat to low.
In a small bowl whisk together warm broth* and 3 tablespoons starch until smooth. Slowly add starch slurry to the skillet, stirring well after each addition.
Have the milk ready to go and slowly add milk to the skillet, stirring well after each addition. Whisk for 3-4 minutes, or until thickened. Add 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper. Stir until well combined.
Pour mushroom soup over green beans and toss to combine. Sprinkle onion slices on top of the green beans.
Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes, or until green beans are cooked through and onions are crispy.
Let sit for 10 minutes before serving. Sprinkle with parsley and enjoy!
- Heating the broth is very important! This step ensures there are no large clumps of starch in your cream of mushroom soup.
- A 9 x 13 inch baking dish will give you crispier onions.
- The best way to reheat already cooked green bean casserole is to return it to a 350 degree oven for 15-20 minutes, or until it is heated through.