Do you have a favorite side dish that your family never seems to tire of? Green bean casserole is one such dish in many households. While some people only enjoy it at big family gatherings (like Thanksgiving) or at potluck dinners, this casserole can be made and shared at any time.
Green bean casserole is a classic dish. It’s so easy to make and it’s delicious. You can pair it with many different things and you can mix up how you make it and add different things to it for your personal preferences and tastes. It’s so versatile!
A little casserole goes a long way.
But can you freeze green bean casserole? Green bean casserole is best frozen without the crisp onion topping but you can still freeze it if those are already a part of the dish. It’s quite simple to do and it freezes well and reheats easily!
In this guide, we will walk you through the proper method for freezing a green bean casserole. You can make it ahead and freeze it or you can freeze your leftovers. We will also share some tips and information related to green bean casserole.
Keep reading to learn all about freezing your green bean casserole and more.
A Guide to Green Bean Casserole – How to Freeze It
Green bean casserole is rather self-explanatory. If you’ve never tried it, you’re definitely missing out. It’s the perfect mix of flavors and crunch and it even as vegetables in it.
The initial concept of green bean casserole is simple. It was traditionally made with green beans, cream of mushroom soup, and french-fried onions. Since the traditional dish, there are many recipes that have adapted it to their tastes, which is great!
Now you can find it made with cheese. You might find recipes that add milk to the cream of mushroom. You also might find recipes that opt to use cream of chicken or cream of celery instead. And then there are those who make their own cream soup or enhance the dish with other vegetables and additives.
Really, you can do just about anything you want with the dish.
How Green Bean Casserole is Made
To give you some insight as to what we’re working with as we progress through the freezing process, it’s pertinent that we talk about how green bean casserole is made.
We’re going to share a simple recipe with you. This will be for traditional green bean casserole but keep in mind this is simply for reference purposes.
- You will need milk, cream of mushroom soup, green beans, salt and pepper, and fried onions for this recipe.
- Start by stirring together the soup, milk, and seasonings in a mixing bowl.
- Pour drained green beans into a casserole dish.
- Pour your sauce mixture over the beans and stir everything together well. You can mix a few fried onions into this part of the dish but do not top the dish yet.
- Bake the casserole mixture for 25 minutes at 350 degrees.
- Stir the cooked mixture and layer the top with fried onions. Add as many or as few as you like.
- Bake an additional 5-10 minutes.
This is for making green bean casserole fresh. If you plan to make ahead and freeze for later, we recommend that you leave the fried onions off until you are ready to bake it for serving. This will save you some hassle when it comes to preserving those and not having to worry about them getting soggy.
Don’t worry, though, if you’re just contending with leftovers you can still freeze your green bean casserole.
Uses for Leftover Green Bean Casserole
If you need some options for trying to use up that green bean casserole, we’ve got some great ideas for you. There are a lot of things you can do with green bean casserole that will mix it up. Of course, it’s great in its original state but sometimes you just need a little change.
Here are several ideas for you.
- Green bean casserole pasta
- Turn into an egg hash
- Stuffed mushrooms
- Cheesy green bean casserole
These are just a few ideas for simple things you can do with your leftover green beans. Sometimes we just get tired of the same thing and need a good way to switch it up. There are tons of recipes for incorporating your leftovers into another dish and giving it a whole new flavor.
How to Freeze Green Bean Casserole
There are two different approaches to consider when it comes to freezing green bean casserole.
- You can prepare the casserole ahead of time and freeze it and then simply pop it in the oven to cook before serving.
- Or, you can bake your green bean casserole and contend with freezing the leftovers. The difference between the two is when you need to freeze it.
There are some variations in the process depending on which one you are using so we will cover both in detail.
Freezing Uncooked Green Bean Casserole
Freezing your green bean casserole as a make-ahead dish is actually the best way to freeze it. It is so simple because you literally just need to throw your ingredients together and wrap it and seal it.
When you’re ready to cook it, you just take it straight from the freezer to the oven and get it started heating up. It’s so easy!
Here are your steps for freezing green bean casserole before it’s cooked.
- If you cook with fresh beans, you will need to go ahead and cook and prepare those. Cook the beans and prepare your soup mixture as well overheat. If you are using canned green beans, you can just make your mixture altogether with no cooking.
- Pour your green bean casserole mixture into a pan that will be both oven-safe and freezer-safe. If your heated anything, be sure to let it cool to room temperature prior to completing the remainder of the process.
- Wrap the pan with plastic wrap.
- Seal the pan with foil over the plastic wrap.
- Label and date the foil.
- You can freeze your prepared green bean casserole for up to 6 months.
Once you’ve frozen the casserole, it’s so easy to work with. You simply remove it from the freezer and remove the foil and plastic wrap.
It takes a bit longer to bale since it has been frozen but you can bake it at 350 for approximately 45 minutes. Then add your fried onions to the top and cook another 20 minutes to golden bubbling perfection!
Freezing Cooked (Leftover) Green Bean Casserole
The process is slightly different for freezing green bean casserole that has already been cooked. For starters, you don’t have the option of freezing the casserole without the French fried onions because you already cooked the casserole with them in and on it.
Some would say freezing your leftover green bean casserole is not a good idea. You do run the risk of your French fried onions getting slightly soggy, but we promise it doesn’t ruin the dish. You can successfully freeze it.
- Let the cooked casserole cool to room temperature.
- Remove some of the onion toppings if you can do so without destroying the casserole. They should scrape off pretty easily.
- Cover the oven-safe pan with plastic wrap.
- Wrap tightly in foil so that the pan and contents are well sealed.
- Label, date, and throw in the freezer.
- You can store your cooked green bean casserole in the freezer for about 6 months.
When you’re ready to use the green bean casserole, you would treat it much like what we instructed above for an uncooked casserole. You can refresh with new French fried onions when it’s nearly finished heating.
Even if you didn’t remove the original onions, we recommend adding some fresh ones to spruce it back up.
We hope you have found this guide to freezing green bean casserole to be a satisfactory resource for walking through the process.
We invite you to take a look at the following question and answer section for some additional information.
What is Used to Make Cream Soup from Scratch?
If you prefer to make your own rather than purchasing the can, you would need mushrooms, broth, butter, milk, cornstarch, and heavy cream.
You would go through a process cooking these on the stove together.
What if My Casserole Is Soupy?
If your casserole appears soupy, you can fix it!
This is probably an indication that you put in too much milk. Most of the time, you can fix this by adding some cornstarch or flour and blending it in well.
Can You Substitute Cream of Mushroom?
If you’re not a fan of cream of mushroom, you can use another form of cream soup.
It is not uncommon to substitute cream of chicken or cream of celery as an alternative. Or you can make your own cream and leave out the mushrooms.