Green Beans with Cranberries, Bacon and Goat cheese

These green beans with cranberries, bacon and goat cheese are a healthy addition to your Thanksgiving table that doesn’t skimp on flavor.

A bit of crazy just went down in this house as I started to type this post and glanced at my ring finger to notice a big back hole where a diamond normally sits on my anniversary band. Of course, I spent the entire day in the kitchen cooking breakfast, lunch and dinner from scratch, meaning there were plenty of opportunities for it to have been washed down a drain. And, the best part…my anniversary band is the one ring that isn’t insured. I figured the probability to be about 2% of me finding this diamond as I crawled around on the rug in the family room, looked in the sink and scoured the wood floors in the kitchen until I reached down to pick up a rogue kale leaf that didn’t make it into the pot of chili last night and saw it shining back at me in the corner of the floor, right next to the stove where I stood for approximately 4 hours yesterday cooking. Crazy lucky, huh?

So now that that’s over, let’s talk green beans.

Green Beans with Cranberries, Goat Cheese and Bacon |

Eating healthy on Thanksgiving is probably one of the last things I’m concerned with but honestly, the marshmallow studded sweet potatoes and creamy, god-knows-what-kind-of canned-soup casseroles do nothing for me. I’d much rather some veggies dressed up for the occasion but still recognizable as a vegetable.

Sautéing these beans in bacon grease, tossing them with cranberries and topping with crumbled bacon and goat cheese is just that; still very much a vegetable but a bit fancier than your normal dinner fare. The best part of this dish is that it doesn’t take up precious oven space (because there can never be enough of that on Thanksgiving!) and it’s done in literally minutes.

Green Beans with Cranberries, Goat Cheese and Bacon |

Erin is hosting a Thanksgiving potluck today where a bunch of us are sharing some of our favorite dishes for the big day but also hoping to drive some awareness to the issue of hunger in America. As someone who goes to the grocery store without thought at least 4 times a week and has more food than I can even eat at times in my fridge it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that hunger is a real problem in this country. Feeding America is an organization doing great things through different food bank programs to help. As we approach one of the biggest food holidays of the year, I’m taking a step back from stressing about what the menu looks like for my family who will have plenty come Thanksgiving to find out how I can help a family whose table might not be as full. Find out how you can help here.

Serves 4-6     adjust servings

Green beans with cranberries, bacon and goat cheese

Preparation 5 min Prep Time
Cook Time 15 min Cook Time
Total Time 20 mins Total Time

These green beans with cranberries, bacon and goat cheese are a healthy addition to your Thanksgiving table that doesnâ??t skimp on flavor.


  • 1 1/2 pounds green beans, washed and trimmed
  • 2 slices bacon
  • 1/2 cup fresh cranberries
  • 1 ounce goat cheese, crumbled
  • salt & pepper to taste


  1. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, cook the bacon until crispy. Remove the bacon from the pan and set aside but leave the grease in the pan.
  2. Add the green beans to the pan with the bacon grease. Saute for 3-5 minutes, tossing occasionally until the green beans start to "char". At this point, cover the skillet with a lid and let steam for another 5-7 minutes.
  3. Remove the lid, add the cranberries and saute for another 2-3 minutes until the cranberries are warmed through and starting to wrinkle.
  4. Plate the beans with the cranberries, crumble the goat cheese and bacon on top and season with salt & pepper.



  1. Megan {Country Cleaver}

    Bacon grease makes the world go ’round. And still I love that these are purdy darn healthy. I mean, like you said – at least you can tell that it’s a vegetable, which I an’t say much else for a traditional side dish on Turkey Day hahah GORGEOUS

  2. Liz

    Oh, yeah. This is what I want on my Thanksgiving table…no marshmallows, no gloppy soup as an ingredient. And gorgeous as well as delicious!! Brava!

  3. Erin @ Texanerin Baking

    Yeah. I don’t get the marshmallow and funky ingredient dishes that are so popular. Just give me a basket of dinner rolls and leave me alone. :)

    And these green beans are so pretty. I just told my husband my Thanksgiving plans and he complained about the lack of veggies. I’m definitely going to make these! I’ll do a trial run this week. :D

  4. Erin @ Texanerin Baking

    Lol. My husband just saw this up on the computer and didn’t know I had written you about making these for Thanksgiving (and the test run!) and he was squealing, “I WANT! I WANT!” So um… yeah. Guess we’ll be having these tomorrow! :)

  5. Tracey

    I’m always so, so afraid of losing the stones from my rings. You must have been crazy relieved to find yours! Green beans cooked in bacon grease sounds so heavenly, this would be an amazing Thanksgiving side! And it’s gorgeous too :)

  6. Katrina @ In Katrina's Kitchen

    Nightmare! My mom lost her diamond TWICE and found it both times. Craziness! I once lost my whole wedding ring and it was gone for weeks. I thought it would turn up but the longer time went by I started getting weepy about it. Then my husband found it ground into our driveway! Oh my word! Our van had been driving over and over it for weeks! I cried like a baby when he found it and told me what happened. We think it fell off of my finger when I was taking my gloves off one day. Ugh.

    1. Running to the Kitchen Post author

      oh my gosh, I’d be so upset if that happened to mine! That happened to an earring I had (a cheap one) that I wore all the time when I was taking a motorcycle helmet off in the garage and when I found it all bent and broken I was so upset! I can’t even imagine if it were my rings!

  7. Kim Beaulieu

    We lost hubs wedding ring, still looking for it. Not sure it’s ever going to turn up. Such a bummer.

    I just love this recipe. It’s the perfect side dish for Thanksgiving. Would be fabulous for Christmas too.

  8. Erin @ Texanerin Baking

    He made ’em! I don’t like green beans or goat cheese so I just ate the bacon. :) (I actually ate the entire package of bacon before it got added to the beans and had to fry another package). We’re going to serve these at Thanksgiving. I’m going to feel so classy and fancy. :D

    And he doesn’t say much about food but he ate the entire batch by himself in one sitting. I guess he liked them. Thanks for the recipe!

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  11. Michele

    Made these today for Christmas dinner… so easy and pretty and delicious!! Everyone loved them! And the green, red & white… perfect Christmas colors! :)

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  22. Nancy

    These green beans were absolutely delicious — loved all of the extras; especially the cheese and cranberries. Thanks for a great recipe. Nancy : )

  23. Catherine

    Dear Gina, I don’t think it gets any better than this. The bacon and goat cheese is a perfect combo to balance out the cranberries. A perfect holiday side dear. xo, Catherine

    1. Running to the Kitchen Post author

      I would keep the goat cheese and bacon separate from the cooked beans and cranberries. Reheat the beans right before serving then top with the bacon and goat cheese.


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