These Sweet and Spicy Green Beans will be your new favorite keto side dish! This easy recipe is ready in just 20 minutes and has just 5 net carbs per serving.
Easy Green Bean Recipe
These delicious Sweet and Spicy Green Beans are quick, simple, and super flavorful! Crunchy bacon and tender green beans are coated in a delicious 4-ingredient sugar-free sauce that you’ll love. Top with sesame seeds and red pepper flakes for the perfect side dish for nearly any entree. With just 5 net carbs and fewer than 100 calories, this easy green bean recipe is the perfect side dish on a low-carb or keto diet.
Ingredients for Sweet & Spicy Green Beans
Here’s a quick overview of what you’ll need for this recipe. Find exact measurements at the bottom of the page in the printable recipe card.
- Bacon – I prefer thick-cut bacon in this recipe because it gives a meatier bite that perfectly complements the green beans.
- Green Beans – Fresh with ends trimmed. I don’t recommend frozen or canned green beans as they won’t get that crisp texture we’re looking for in this recipe.
- Garlic – Freshly minced garlic has the most flavor, but you can use the pre-minced jar from the store to make the meal quicker.
- Soy Sauce, Brown Sugar Monk Fruit, and Apple Cider Vinegar – Makes the flavorful sauce. Coconut aminos is a great soy-free alternative to soy sauce. Brown sugar Swerve or other alternative sweetener could be used instead of monk fruit. If you don’t have apple cider vinegar, substitute champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar for a similar flavor.
- Optional: Sesame Seeds & Red Pepper Flakes – These are for garnish and add a great texture and flavor! If you don’t enjoy spicy foods, feel free to leave out the red pepper.
How to Make Sweet and Spicy Green Beans
In addition to the ingredients listed above you will need a large skillet, cutting board and knife. This is an easy side dish recipe that can come together in just 20 minutes! Here’s a step-by-step guide for making these tasty green beans!
Cook the Bacon
Warm a skillet to medium heat. While that’s warming up, cut your bacon into small pieces. Place the bacon into the hot pan and cook until bacon is crisp. Remove from the skillet with a slotted spoon and transfer it to a paper towel lined plate. Set it aside for now.
Add Green Beans
Pour off almost all of the bacon grease, but reserve 1 tablespoon for cooking the green beans. Add your trimmed green beans to the hot skillet and cook for 6-7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cook until the beans have begun to char, and they reach your preferred level of tenderness.
Toss in Sauce
In a small bowl, combine the garlic, soy sauce, sweetener, and vinegar. Pour this into the hot skillet and toss the green beans to coat. Add bacon, sesame seeds, and crushed red pepper, then serve immediately.
We love these delicious green beans with an easy entree like Sesame Shrimp or this Slow Cooker Ginger Garlic Pork Tenderloin. To stretch the meal, you can add Cauliflower Fried Rice or Roasted Cabbage without weighing yourself down too much. These amazing Air Fryer Brussels Sprouts would make the best appetizer… The dipping sauce would be excellent with these green beans, too! Some other entrees include:
- Chili Garlic Salmon (2 carbs per filet)
- Air Fryer Asian Meatballs (2.2 net carbs for 5 meatballs)
- Air Fryer Chicken Legs (1.8 net carbs for about 2 drumsticks)
- Easy Asian Keto Lettuce Wraps (3.4 net carbs for 4-5 filled leaves)
- Low Carb Kung Pao Chicken (4.4 net carbs for about 1 cup)
Allow these green beans to cool completely, then transfer any leftovers to an airtight container. It’ll last 3-4 days in the fridge. If you’re trying to prep this ahead of time, feel free to just cook the bacon, reserve one tablespoon of oil, and mix together the sauce ingredients. When you’re ready to cook, you’ll save another 5-10 minutes!
I don’t recommend freezing this recipe. Cooked green beans don’t keep a very crisp texture in the fridge, so they’re likely to become soggy and a bit mushy after freezing and thawing.
Fresh green beans are best reheated in a hot skillet (medium heat, 2-5 minutes, shaking or stirring frequently), in the oven (350 degrees, 5-10 minutes, cover if you’re concerned they’ll brown too much), or in the air fryer (350 for 2-5 minutes, preferably with a liner so you don’t lose the bacon in the bottom).
You can microwave them, but they do lose some crispness this way. If microwaving, consider blasting at 50% power to prevent them from changing texture too much.
If you like this easy side dish, check out these simple recipes!
- Crispy Green Bean Fries – These are easily breaded and quickly crisped up in the air fryer! Just 5.6 net carbs per serving.
- Foil Pack Green Beans – This recipe uses a similar sauce, but the green beans basically get steamed in the tightly secured foil pack. I love that the only cleanup required is throwing away the foil!
- Air Fryer Green Beans – Ready in about 10-12 minutes, this is such an easy, healthy recipe! Lemon juice adds a ton of flavor and perfectly complements this crispy veggie.
- Green Bean Almondine – Our favorite holiday side dish! The texture of slivered almonds on crisp, fresh green beans, all with a sugar-free, delicious sauce… It can’t be beat!
- Keto Bacon Wrapped Green Beans – These are SO flavorful with just steak marinade, a sugar-free sweetener, and a sprinkle of blue cheese!
Green Bean FAQs
When trimming green beans, you just want to focus on the ends. Grab a handful of green beans and arrange them so that all of the bottom end lines up together. Cut the ends off with a knife (usually just 1/4″ or so is needed). Flip the green beans, arrange so that the remaining ends are lined up together. Cut off those ends, rinse beans with water, and pat dry.
No, this is not a recipe that calls for blanching. Blanching is a great way to parcook your green beans, perfect for freezing but not for this recipe. If you do use blanched green beans, you’ll have a very mushy dish that likely won’t stick to much of the flavorful sauce.
No, using frozen or canned green beans will make it impossible to achieve the crisp texture we’re looking for in this dish. Frozen and canned options have already been blanched, steamed, or otherwise cooked, so they don’t hold up as well in the skillet. If you do use frozen or canned, you’ll get extremely soft green beans that struggle to soak up the sweet-and-spicy sauce.
Yes, green beans are a great veggie option on the keto diet! One cup of green beans has 7 grams of carbs, 2.7 grams of fiber, 0.2 grams of fat, and 1.8 grams of protein. 7 grams of carbs – 2.7 grams of fiber = 4.3 net carbs in a cup of green beans.
- 3 slices thick-cut bacon
- 12 ounces fresh green beans, ends trimmed
- 3 cloves garlic, very finely minced
- 2 teaspoons EACH soy sauce, brown sugar monkfruit, and apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
- Red pepper flakes (optional garnish)
- Cut the bacon into small pieces and brown over medium heat. When the bacon is crisp, remove from the skillet with a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Pour off all of the bacon grease except 1 tablespoon. Add the green beans to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, 6-7 minutes until they have begun to char and reached your desired tenderness.
- In a small bowl combine the garlic, soy sauce, sweetener and apple cider vinegar. Toss the green beans in the sauce until the beans are well coated.
- Add the bacon, sesame seeds and crushed red pepper for garnish. Serve immediately.
- Brown sugar Swerve or another alternative sweetener can also work in place of the monk fruit.
- If you are not low carb you can use regular brown sugar in this recipe.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1/4 of skillet
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 77Total Fat: 3.6gCholesterol: 8.5mgSodium: 223.3mgCarbohydrates: 7.4gNet Carbohydrates: 5gFiber: 2.4gSugar: 2.9gProtein: 5g
To avoid any confusion I remove erythritol from the final carb count and net carb count, as it is not known to affect blood glucose levels. To calculate Keto recipes listed on this site carbs - fiber = net carbs. I use Nutrifox as my nutrition calculator. This nutrition information is an estimate based on the information provided by Nutrifox and the specific ingredients I used.