Grilled Green Beans with Sesame

This recipe was inspired by a search for some kind of grilled vegetable to go along with some oven-barbecued pork. I originally thought I’d make a summer squash sort of thing however my search results were underwhelming. When I expanded the search to just grilled vegetables I found one reference to grill green beans. I used the basic technique from that recipe, adding the sesame rather than their overly complicated onion/garlic/rosemary mash-up. I enjoyed the charred beans, which were a bit smoky ’cause grilling.

Grilled Green Beans with Sesame
Servings: 8-10
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 25 minutes


  • 1 1/2 pounds green beans, trimmed and cut into 1 1/2″ pieces
  • 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. white sesame seeds
  • 2 tsp. toasted sesame oil

Special Equipment:


  1. Heat your gas grill to medium high for 10-15 minutes. Once the grill is started I trim the green beans.
  2. Combine the prepped green beans, vegetable oil, a generous pinch of kosher salt and a dozen grinds of black pepper in a large bowl. Toss the beans until well coated with oil.
  3. Place the grill pan over 2 active burners on the grill. Transfer the oiled green beans onto the grill pan and spread the beans across the pan. Close the cover and ignore for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Stir the green beans, spread across the pan once again and cook for another 3-4 minutes, cover up this time. While the green beans cook toast the sesame seeds in a dry skillet over medium heat for a minute or so. You want the sesame seeds to be lightly browned. Once toasted transfer the sesame seeds to a small bowl to prevent burning in the hot pan.
  5. Check a green bean; if it is not done to your liking then toss, spread and cook for another minute at a time until you are happy with the done-ness. When done remove the grill pan from the heat.
  6. Transfer the grilled green beans to a bowl. Add the toasted sesame seeds and toasted sesame oil. Toss, adjust salt and pepper if necessary and serve.

Green beans can be prepped up to 2 hours in advance. Cover with a barely-damp paper towel and stash in the fridge.

Roasted Sesame Green Beans

Boiled vegetables are rather boring. The water washes away flavor, and nutrients. Without careful timing the veggies come out limp and dull. Roasting on the other hand concentrates the flavors with the added bonus of some nice charring if you are lucky.

Roasted Sesame Green Beans
Servings: 8-10
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 25 minutes


  • 3 lbs. fresh green beans, stem-end trimmed, cut into 2″ pieces
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. toasted sesame oil
  • 1 Tbsp. white sesame seeds, toasted
  • kosher salt and cracked black pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 450°F with rack in the middle position. Line a half-sheet pan with aluminum foil (for easy clean-up).
  2. Toss green beans with olive oil and scatter between two unlined sheet pans. Better to have overlapping beans than everything squished into a single layer. Sprinkle with about 1 teaspoon of kosher salt. Transfer to the oven and cook for 5 minutes.
  3. Swap and rotate the sheet pans. Return to the oven for an additional 5 minutes.
  4. Remove pan from the oven to a cooling rack. Drizzle with sesame oil, sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and freshly ground black pepper. Transfer to a serving dish and enjoy.

After trimming the green beans I use a salad spinner to rinse off any dust that clings to them. Fill the salad spinner with water, add the beans and swish them about. Lift out the perforated basket and dump the water. Refill with water and repeat until the water runs clean. Then give the beans a couple of spins to get rid of excess moisture. You’ll want to keep a hand on top of the spinner though or it might fling itself off the counter.

I referenced a recipe from Cook’s Illustrated when I started this and ended up only using the cooking temp/times.