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This simple, healthy side dish has a wonderful combination of flavors, crisp green beans, crunchy almonds and tart cranberries. The best part is this will be ready in 15 minutes!
I love birthdays. Especially family and friends’ birthdays! I love to bake cakes, get balloons and pick out the perfect gift for that special someone. But then there’s MY birthday. Eh. I am not one of those people that hate their birthday, but it’s just another day, right? Happy birthday to me!
My middle son asked what special breakfast they were going to have for MY birthday. Yes, I do always make special breakfasts for them on THEIR birthdays. Isn’t it hilarious that they thought I was going to make them something special for my birthday? I guess that’s normal for us moms.
But it still makes me laugh. I don’t really want a special breakfast. What I want is someone to do all the laundry in my house, then clean my entire house while I go to bar method and get a massage. Yeah… that’s not happening.
I do plan on going out to dinner with my 3 little men and the hubby and have a quiet night at home. That’s just as good. Well, almost as good. 😉
Is it weird to post a green bean recipe on my birthday? Maybe a little bit. Don’t even think I won’t be making these Birthday Cookies today and eating a whole bunch! For now, I wanted to share this recipe with you guys because it’s simple to make, healthy and crazy delicious.
Ok, let’s talk green beans and the holidays. I’ve had that green bean casserole with the canned mushroom soup and I think people really like it? I don’t love creamy stuff like that. But I love these green beans! Hav you tried my Green Bean Quinoa Casserole yet? It’s made with fresh green beans, no canned cream soups and best of all, QUINOA!
This dish is simple and healthy and can be ready in 15 minutes. It’s a perfect, quick dish for the craziness and chaos of the holidays. To be honest, I make this all year long and it’s always a crowd pleaser.
It really is the only way my kids will eat green beans. I’ll take it.
Balsamic Glazed Green Beans with Cranberries and Almonds
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon honey I used raw honey, but you can use 100% maple syrup if you'd like it to be vegan
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 12 ounces green beans ends trimmed
- 2 tablespoons sliced almonds
- 2 tablespoons dried cranberries
In a small bowl, mix together balsamic vinegar and honey. Set aside.
Place garlic and oil in large skillet and cook under medium heat for 2-3 minutes until softened.
Add green beans and stir. Cook for about 10 minutes until green beans are still bright green and crispy.
Add balsamic mixture, almonds and cranberries and mix again. Cook for another 2 minutes.
If you want to cut back on the sugar in this dish you can add a little sugar free sweetener, like liquid stevia or monk fruit for a substitute for the honey (or maple syrup). You only need a small amount for this dish.
I still have flashbacks of my grandmother’s green beans at the holidays (Sorry Grandma!). The green beans weren’t green, but a slight brownish color (because they were canned) and they were mushy and overcooked. I make sure my green beans are bright green, crispy and crunchy.
Even my kids like my green beans with a little crispiness. I mean, does anyone really like limp, mushy vegetables? And parents, if we are trying to encourage our kids to eat more veggies, serving them brown mushy vegetables is not the way…
I love the sliced almonds and dried cranberries in here too. The sliced almonds give some added texture and crunch and the cranberries add a little tart and sweetness to the dish. Just make sure you buy the cranberries without added sugar like these.
The ones with added sugar can have up to 25 grams of sugar for a serving. Save that for the cookies, cakes and pies, am I right? I really don’t need added sugar in my green bean side dish.
Does your family have any birthday traditions? We let the birthday girl (or boy) pick what restaurant they’d like to eat at for dinner. That’s always fun when you have two kids born on the same day and they can’t decide on a restaurant… That’s always fun!
So now that my birthday is over, it’s time to really think about the holidays. They are right around the corner and I haven’t even thought about what I’m making. I mean, I always have my holiday go-to recipes (with this green bean recipe being one of them!) but I really don’t feel prepared.
I guess with three busy kids in sports and activities and working from home, managing the house and family, I am rarely prepared these days. Such is life I guess. And most of the time I get by just fine.
Here are some other holiday dishes that you might like if you haven’t prepared for the holidays yet either. Come on, please tell me there are more people out there who aren’t ready! And don’t even mention Christmas to me… I have a friend that FINISHED her Christmas shopping in July. Is that even possible?
Anyway, thank you for all of the birthday wishes! I am so thankful for all of you!
I hope you all have a happy, healthy holiday season! And please pass along any fun, healthy and easy holiday recipes you have. I am always looking for new ideas and I appreciate any help I can get!