Kalyn's Kitchen

Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts

Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts are quickly stir-fried to to turn fresh green beans into a special side dish.

PIN the recipe to try it later!

Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts finished beans on serving plate

When you’re writing a home cooking blog, you’re not only sharing your recipes with the world, you’re also documenting what you’re eating. And when I first posted this recipe for Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts green beans weren’t something I cooked that often. Then I discovered those lovely thin French green beans at Costco, which not only inspired me to make this recipe but also got me started growing my own green beans in the garden. And now have more than 20 Green Beans Recipes on the blog.

But even with all those options, this is one of the green beans recipes I use most, and I took some new photos and to recommend it for my Friday Favorites pick this week to entice you to try it. Of course, lemon, parmesan, and PINE NUTS! How can that possibly not be good? If you’re a gardener and have green beans planted, before long you’ll have more green beans than you ever imagined, so let me recommend this way to cook them. Look after the recipe for more delicious ideas for green beans from Kalyn’s Kitchen and some of my blogging friends.

What ingredients do you need for this recipe?

  • fresh green beans, preferably thin French green beans
  •  olive oil
  • whole garlic cloves
  • lemon juice
  • lemon zest
  • freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • pine nuts

What if you don’t have pine nuts?

Pine nuts can be pricey if you don’t buy them at Costco, and lately Costco seems to be having a shortage. I think slivered almonds would be a great substitute in this recipe.

Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts process shots collage

How to make this recipe:

(Scroll down for complete recipe with nutritional information.)

  1. Trim the beans into pieces about 2 inches long (and wash if you’re using garden beans.)
  2. Put the green beans in a bowl, cover with cling wrap (or a loosely-fitting lid), and microwave for 2 minutes.
  3. While the beans cook in the microwave, zest the lemon and squeeze the juice. Get the garlic and Parmesan ready and toast the pine nuts in a dry pan just until they’re barely starting to brown.
  4. Heat the oil in a large wok or heavy frying pan, then add the garlic and cook about 1 minute, or until fragrant; then discard the garlic. (This is called “seasoning the oil.”)  Don’t let the garlic brown.
  5. Add the green beans and stir-fry over high heat until they are just starting to brown, but are still slightly crisp. Taste one to see if it’s as done as you’d like it; thicker garden beans will take slightly longer.
  6. Lower heat, add the lemon juice and stir to get that flavor mixed in with the beans; then turn off heat and sprinkle the lemon zest and Parmesan over the beans. 
  7. Serve hot, sprinkled with the toasted pine nuts.

Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts close-up photo of finished beans on serving plate

Make it a Meal:

These Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts would be great with something like Baked Swedish Meatballs or Beef and Sausage Meatballs with Tomato Sauce for a low-carb meal.

More Ideas for Green Beans:

Garlicky Green Beans Stir Fry ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Fresh Green Beans with Bacon, Mushrooms, and Herbs ~ Cookin’ Canuck
Green Beans with Tahini-Lemon Sauce ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen
Green Beans with Lemon-Dill Yogurt Sauce ~ The Perfect Pantry
Green Bean Salad with Greek Olives and Feta Cheese ~ Kalyn’s Kitchen

Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts

Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts

Yield 4 servings
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Total Time 28 minutes

This recipe for Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts is a delicious way to use fresh green beans from the garden.


  • 1 lb. fresh green beans, preferably thin French green beans
  • 1 1/2 T olive oil (or less, depending on your pan or wok)
  • 2 cloves whole garlic
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. lemon zest
  • 1 T freshly grated Parmesan
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted in hot pan 1-2 minutes


  1. Trim ends from green beans. (I do this by gathering a handful, then standing them up on the cutting board while holding loosely so the beans all line up, then trimming the end. Turn over and repeat with the other end.)
  2. Cut beans into pieces about 2 inches long.
  3. Put beans into glass bowl, cover with cling film or a loosely-fitting lid, and microwave on high 2 minutes.
  4. While beans microwave, zest the lemon and squeeze the juice. (You will not need all the juice, freeze the extra to use later.)
  5. In a dry pan, toast pine nuts over high heat 1-2 minutes, until they barely start to brown. Set aside.
  6. Heat oil in wok or large frying pan over high heat.
  7. Add garlic cloves and stir fry about 1 minute. (This is a Chinese cooking technique called seasoning the oil.) Be sure not to brown the garlic or it will taste bitter. Remove garlic and discard.
  8. Add beans and stir-fry for 2-3 minutes, or until beans are barely starting to brown but are still slightly crisp. (I taste one to see if they are done. I prefer them slightly underdone.)
  9. Lower heat, then pour lemon juice over beans, and stir beans a few times.
  10. Turn off heat, then sprinkle lemon zest and Parmesan cheese over beans and stir again.
  11. Remove beans to serving plate, sprinkle with toasted pine nuts, and serve immediately.


Recipe inspired by A Veggie Venture.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 155Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 31mgCarbohydrates: 12gFiber: 5gSugar: 5gProtein: 4g

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!

Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts square thumbnail image of finished beans on serving plate

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts would be a perfect side dish for any phase of the original South Beach Diet and they are low enough in net carbs for most any low-carb diet plan.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Side Dishes 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 can also Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Pinterest image of Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts

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    35 Comments on “Green Beans with Lemon, Parmesan, and Pine Nuts”

  1. Karina, thanks, and you’re welcome for the mention.

    Liberal foodie and Ruth, hope you like it.

    Jessica, thanks for sharing the feedback. So glad you liked it. I was totally in love with it when I made it. I ate about half of it for my dinner that night.

  2. I tried this last night…the results were great. My husband is picky about veggies, but he loved it too! Thank you so much for all your great ideas Kalyn 🙂

  3. thanks for all the green bean recipe links – quite an awesome selection. I do think I’ll start with this one you’re highlighting.

    Thanks for sharing

  4. this is such an easy and exceptional recipe for green beans. I’ll have to try it. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Kalyn,

    Love this combo of flavors. And thanks for the mention. Much appreciated.



  6. Alanna, love the lemon with the beans.

    Emily, hope you like it.

    Chris, aren’t pine nuts fantastic. (Go to Costco now!)

    Dani, thanks for stopping by.

    Nabeela, aren’t those Costco beans great?

  7. I love those costco beans, they are full of flavor…and they cook so fast!

  8. Let me try that again…I’m still learning

  9. Hi Kalyn…
    I really love your site and so many of your recipes. Congratulations on living a healthier lifestyle, you’re an inspiration!!
    Also wanted to let you know that I’m linking you to my blog…I love what you do here!

  10. Looks wonderful. I love the flavor combos. I must get some more pine nuts!

  11. Those look great for summer – I can’t wait to try them.

  12. Glad the recipe inspired you!!

  13. Millufe, French beans are not kidney beans here, but who knows what they’re called there? In the U.S., French beans are a type of very thin green beans.

    Christine, sounds fun. Glad you’re having a nice time.

    Pille, thanks. This was great.

    Patricia, they’ll never be the same for me either, for sure!

    Sara, I bet the beans at Trader Joe’s are great. We don’t have Trader Joe’s, sigh!

    Anh, must remember that idea of balsamic vinegar with beans, sounds lovely.

    Tristan, welcome. Glad you like the looks of what I’m cooking. I agree, pine nuts are fantastic!

  14. Hi Kayln! I’ve been reading your blog for a few weeks now and I love what you’ve been posting! I think I’ll eat anything with pine nuts…what a great idea!

  15. Kalyn, I can eat green beans everyday and don’t get tired. Your recipe sounds lovely! Last time I accidently added some balsamic vinegar to my grean beans stir-fry and it tasted surprisingly good… Love your combo!

  16. That looks like a great way to make green beans – I like to buy the baby green beans at Trader Joe’s, they’re more tender. I will give this a try.

  17. Kalyn, green beans will never be the same again – this looks so delicious!

  18. Kalyn – one can never have too many tasty side dish recipes, and you’re providing plenty of them! Thanks!

  19. Hello from Fort Collins, Kalyn. I’m here visiting with all my sisters and nieces. We’re including green beans on our dinner menu tonight so your recipe adds inspiration. Thanks so much for the link! I’ll be back in my kitchen this Wednesday.

  20. This looks delicious! I will try it tomorrow. Is French bean kidney bean? I usually mix kidney bean and sesame or peanut or dried bonito. Bean with lemon, parmesan and pine nut sound new for me and I can buy all of them in Japan. Great!