Kalyn's Kitchen

Lemony Green Beans

Lemony Green Beans have lemon juice and lemon zest, and these are one of my favorite green bean recipes that I’ve made many times. And these tasty green beans are a perfect quick and easy side dish for a special meal!

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Lemony Green Beans with Lemon Juice and Lemon Zest found on KalynsKitchen.com

If you’re someone who likes those lovely thin green beans you can get almost all year now, I enthusiastically recommend you try this recipe for Lemony Green Beans that literally takes minutes to get on the table. I know green beans are also a beloved garden vegetable, but I didn’t have garden beans when I first tried the recipe, and I made it three times with the French green beans that come from Costco. And trust me when I say this recipe is ridiculously easy but so, so good!

In fact, the first time I made Lemony Green Beans, I ended up eating a whole pound of green beans myself and calling it lunch! And through the years I’ve made these beans often when I needed a side dish for a special dinner. Beloved recipes like this one that I’ve made over and over are exactly what I love to remind you about for my Friday Favorites posts, so today I’m reminding you about this favorite way to cook green beans and urging you to make it soon! And check the list in the post for more holiday-worthy ideas for green beans!

Lemony Green Beans process shots collage

How to Make Lemony Green Beans:

(Scroll down for complete recipe with nutritional information.)

  1. Trim both ends of the beans. I take a handful of beans, standing them up in my hand, then let them fall down on to the cutting board to line up the ends.
  2. Bring salt and water to boil in a small saucepan, then cook the beans for about 5 minutes, or until they’re barely tender-crisp.
  3. While beans cook, zest and squeeze the juice of one lemon. (I used all the juice, but I like things really lemony.)
  4. Drain beans in a colander placed in the sink.
  5. Heat the olive oil in the same pan you cooked the beans in, then add the beans, pour over the lemon juice, season with salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste, and cook about 1 minute (just long enough to get the beans infused with lemon flavor.)
  6. Put beans on a serving dish and sprinkle with lemon zest. Serve hot.

Lemony Green Beans square image of finished beans on plate

More Favorite Green Beans for Special Dinners:

Roasted Green Beans with Mushrooms, Balsamic, and Parmesan
Air Fryer Asian Green Beans
World’s Easiest Garlicky Green Beans Stir Fry
Stir-Fried Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts
Garlic Roasted Green Beans with Shallots and Almonds

Lemony Green Beans with Lemon Juice and Lemon Zest found on KalynsKitchen.com

Lemony Green Beans

Yield 4 servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 6 minutes
Total Time 21 minutes

Lemony Green Beans have lemon juice and lemon zest, and this is a great low-carb side dish to serve guests.


  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 lb. fresh green beans, both ends trimmed
  • one large lemon (lemon zest and lemon juice)
  • 1 1/2 T olive oil
  • salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste


  1. Trim both ends of green beans. (I do this taking a handful of beans, standing them up in my hand, then letting them fall down on to the cutting board, which lines up the ends. Then trim that end and repeat with the other end.)
  2. Fill a medium-sized saucepan half full with water, add salt, and bring to a boil.
  3. When water boils, add beans, reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cook beans about 5 minutes, or until they are barely tender-crisp.
  4. While beans cook, grate the zest and squeeze the juice from the lemon.
  5. When beans are tender-crisp, drain into a colander placed in the sink.
  6. Return pan to stove and heat the olive oil.
  7. When the oil is hot, add the beans, pour over the lemon juice, season to taste with salt and fresh ground black pepper, and cook beans for about 1 minute, stirring a few times. (Cook beans just long enough to get them infused with lemon flavor.)
  8. Put beans on serving platter, then sprinkle with lemon zest.
  9. Serve hot.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 87Total Fat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 734mgCarbohydrates: 8gFiber: 4gSugar: 4gProtein: 2g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.

If you make this recipe I'd love to hear how it turns out. Leave a star rating or share on social media with the hashtag #KALYNSKITCHEN, thanks!

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Lemony Green Beans are a perfect side dish for any phase of the original South Beach Diet, or any other type of low-carb or low-glycemic eating plan, and the recipe is also vegan, gluten-free, Whole 30, and Paleo.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Green Beans to find more recipes like this one. Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Pinterest image of Lemony Green Beans

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    52 Comments on “Lemony Green Beans”

  1. Thanks Becky and Lydia. I am not a huge fan of green beans compared to a lot of other summer recipes, but I do LOVE them like this!

  2. This is a recipe that makes me want to run out into my garden and harvest green beans… until I remember that I don't grow beans in the garden! Sigh. I love green beans when they're still crunchy. Thanks for linking to one of my recipes.

  3. lemon + green beans. That sounds like a perfect match and perfectly light and fresh!

  4. Thanks Marla!

  5. Beautiful green beans Kalyn, linking back to this in my next post 🙂

  6. Sue, glad you liked them. I am a big lemon fan, but you could definitely use less lemon if you prefer.

  7. I made these beans about a week ago. I served them with ham with cranberries and roasted sweet potato wedges. Yum!
    My boyfriend liked the lemon flavour, but found them just a tad too lemony for his taste. For me, it was just the right amount of lemon.
    This recipe is simple and tasty and goes well with many dishes. I'll probably make these beans again.

  8. I ALWAYS make my green beans like this, except I add garlic and toasted almonds! It is always a crowd pleaser!

  9. Marie, I like the idea of adding some garlic to this. Glad you enjoyed the recipe.

  10. Thanks for digging this up and re-posting…I'm new to your blog and love it so far, but haven't delved through all the old posts yet. We made these for dinner last night, with one small change…I added a smashed garlic glove to the oil while it was heating, and tossed it when I got ready to put the green beans back in. The results were AMAZING. I love lemon and garlic, and I'm a huge fan of green beans…I could have eaten the entire batch, if my pesky husband hadn't insisted on having half of them…SO delicious. We love them!!!

  11. A beautiful and simple way to dress up green beans. Delicious!

  12. I love beans done this way! YUM!!

  13. Alanna, no Trader Joe's here, but I keep hoping we will get it.

    Amy, I think this will become a favorite cookbook. I don't know what to do for ants in a garden, but I'd recommend going to a garden center in your area (a small independent place where there will be an expert) and ask them what to do. I'm sure there's an organic way to keep them away from the plants.

  14. I love Moosewood – I have almost all of their books but I don't think I have that one…I'm off to check and if I don't I'll be ordering it.

    I have thought of you many, many times when I go out to my very sad garden. I'm determined to learn how to do it better but this year it's a mess. My herbs look great but even my zucchini is struggling. I can't seem to keep the ants away. They're eating the heck out of my plants. Any thoughts?

  15. That looks gorgeous, Kalyn, so recommendation taken, bookmarked NOW. We've had beans for a couple of weeks now but they're woody, not so great. Luckily good green beans are easy to find, including yes, at Costco and my personal favorite, Trader Joe's.

  16. I like the idea of using this same technique on asparagus, which might not even need 5 minutes of cooking time I'd guess!

    Dara, I love the thin beans from Costco if you don't have a garden.

    Josie, I do cut my beans, but I line them up so only the tiniest bit gets cut off!

  17. My first thought when I saw the photo was, "Oh my–she cut the beans!" This was said with a mixture of awe/jealousy, as my mom *never* let me use a knife on green beans…so I've spent countless hours snapping each end….*smile* These look lovely–and I can't wait to see what kind of kick the lemon gives the beans!

  18. This is a wonderful, simply way to enjoy the season's sweet beans. I don't have any growing in my garden, but we pick them up whenever we find good ones.

  19. Kalyn, I do a similar recipe with asparagus, but will definitely try it with green beans next time, just for a change

    thank you!

  20. Hi Cindi,
    I love it that you've already made the beans! Aren't they great? Now you can see how I ate the whole thing for lunch, loved them!