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Two white bowls filled with southern green beans and bacon on a gray background with two yellow flowers and a yellow napkin.
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4.67 from 6 votes

Southern Style Green Beans - Instant Pot

It's hard to be that cooked all day with smoky meat flavor of Southern green beans. They are melt in your mouth delicious and are ready in less than an hour.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Pressurizing/Release15 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Dinner, Side Dish
Cuisine: American, Southern
Keyword: green bean recipes, instant pot southern green beans, instantpot green beans, instapot green beans, southern green beans
Servings: 6
Calories: 97kcal


  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 4 strips bacon diced (you can use more if you like)
  • ½ cup onion diced
  • 4 - 6 cloves garlic minced (garlic is one of those things that you measure with your heart - we like a lot. if you don't, use 3 -4.)
  • 1 cup chicken stock, chicken broth, or bone broth
  • 8 cups green beans frozen or fresh
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon dried minced onion
  • ½ teaspoon dried minced garlic
  • teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes add ¼ tsp if you like a little heat


  • 1 ham hock
  • 1 cup red potatoes cut into quarters (add extra broth if adding potatoes)


  • If you are using fresh green beans, wash them, and snap off the ends. If you are using frozen green beans, rinse them, and drain off any excess water. Pick through the beans to remove any beans that don't look very good and remove any stems.
  • Dice up your onion, garlic, and bacon and measure out your spices. Having everything ready to go makes this recipe even faster to prepare.
  • Press the saute button on your Instant Pot and begin heating it up.
    Someone pushing the saute button on an Instant Pot.
  • After a few seconds, add your butter and let melt.
    A hand holding a cube of butter over an Instant Pot.
  • It will melt quickly.
    Melted butter in an Instant Pot.
  • Once the butter is melted, add your diced bacon and cook it until it is mostly browned but not 100% crispy.
    A instant pot cooking bacon with a wood spoon stirring it.
  • You want it to be cooked, but you do not want to cook all of the life out of it as it will continue to cook with the beans.
    A instant pot cooking a lot of diced bacon with a wood spoon stirring it.
  • Add your onions and garlic and cook until the garlic is fragrant, just a minute or two.
    An Instant Pot with bacon, butter, onions, and garlic in it.
  • The onions will cook plenty when you pressure cook and since the Instant Pot is so hot, you have to be careful that the garlic doesn't burn.
    An Instant Pot with bacon, onions, and garlic in it.
  • At this point, deglaze your Instant Pot by pouring in your chicken broth - it should hiss and sputter at you. This will help prevent the dreaded "burn" message. Using a wooden spoon or a spatula, make sure to scrape the bottom of the Instant Pot really well to get off any burnt bits of bacon that were left behind.
    An Instant Pot with bone broth, onions, and bacon in it with a wooden spoon.
  • Now, add your green beans.
    An Instant Pot with uncooked green beans in it.
  • Next, add all of your spices - salt, pepper, minced garlic, minced onion, cayenne, and red pepper flakes.
    Green beans in an Instant Pot with a hand holding a small bowl of seasoning above it
  • Mix everything together.
    Green beans in an Instant Pot with seasoning on top.
  • Put the lid on your Instant Pot and close the vent to "Sealing."
    The top of an instant pot showing the sealed position.
  • Switch your Instant Pot from Saute, to Manual Mode at High Pressure for 20 minutes.
    The front of an Instant Pot with the Manual button and Keep Warm Button selected with 20 minutes at high pressure counting down.
  • When the time is up, let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes
    The front of an Instant Pot showing that it has been keeping warm for 5 minutes.
  • After 5 minutes, do a Quick Release to let out any remaining pressure. (Pull the vent open so that the pressure releases "quickly" or manually, just be careful of your fingers near the steam.)
    The top of an instant pot showing the venting position.
  • Open the lid, then (let the contents cool) and enjoy!
    An Instant Pot with cooked southern green beans in it.



Storage/Shelf Life

These green beans reheat really well. If there are any leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator and reheat in the microwave or on the stove. They taste really good the next day.
They will last in the fridge for about a week or you can freeze them for a few months!


  • Make sure that you don't cook your garlic for very long - the bottom of the Instant Pot can get really hot and burnt garlic tastes pretty awful.
  • Be sure to really deglaze your Instant Pot when adding your broth - let it hit all the bacon bits on the bottom and use your spoon to scrape them off. This will prevent burning.
  • Be sure to let these cool before having a taste. They will be HOT.
  • If you like a little heat, you can do ¼ teaspoon of cayenne and ¼ teaspoon of red pepper flakes. My husband didn't even notice the heat like that - I could notice and I liked it, but I reduced it because I know it would be too spicy for some.

Serving Suggestions

We love to serve these green beans as a side dish with some kind of chicken and rice pilaf. We like to use Bayou Blast seasoning and cook chicken in our other Instant Pot to serve with our green beans. My husband especially likes when I'm feeling motivated enough to make us a skillet of cornbread to serve with it as well ;)


What makes these green beans "Southern" green beans?
Southern green beans are cooked with bacon, garlic, and onion until they are so soft that they just fall apart when you stab them with a fork. They have so much flavor and just melt in your mouth.
Can you add anything else to these green beans?
Absolutely! You can add a ham hock, leftover diced ham, or even diced potatoes. If you are adding ham - reduce the bacon. If you are adding potatoes, increase the broth!
How do you snap the ends off of green beans?
Green beans snap like asparagus - just gently bend them near the end and they will snap where it is natural for them to snap. Sometimes it will be a larger end that comes off and sometimes it will be small - it all just depends on the beans and how fresh they are. Ideally, you don't want to cut the ends off of green beans, you want to let them guide you where they want to be snapped.
Can you make Southern green beans with canned green beans?
The short answer is yes, you can. But I would cook those on the stove and for a short amount of time. Canned green beans are already pretty soft and pressurizing them will get rid of any remaining texture that they have.


Serving: 1cup | Calories: 97kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 474mg | Potassium: 391mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 1100IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 66mg | Iron: 2mg