One of the new classic dishes served at winter holidays from Thanksgiving on is green bean casserole. Topped with fried onions and covered with cream of mushroom soup, it was first introduced by the Campbell’s Soup Company in 1955. It was developed in their test kitchens by Dorcas Reilly and printed on the labels of cream of mushroom soup later that year.1
The classic recipe has only five ingredients: green beans, cream of mushroom soup, milk, pepper, and fried onions.2 Three of the five ingredients are from a can, typical of Fifties recipes developed by convenience food companies. The modern recipe contains soy sauce, which would have been difficult to find in much of the United States when the recipe was introduced.
The problem for people needing to eat low carb and/or gluten free is that soup alone adds a full day’s worth of carbs in just one serving.3 Green beans are naturally low-carb, but the soup and milk make this one dish a blood sugar storm in the making.
The answer? Finding a way to make a low-carb cream of mushroom soup, and swapping out the milk, with its high sugar count from the lactose, for unsweetened almond milk or cream. The cream version is given here. If you choose to do the almond milk version, don’t completely omit the cream, but just substitute almond milk for some of the cream.
Making a low-carb cream of mushroom soup means needing to add back in the flavor notes present in cream of mushroom soup, so you’ll find a few additional ingredients in this version as well. Without them, the casserole is too bland.
Low Carb Green Bean Casserole
2 cans canned green beans — french cut 4 ounces mushroom stems and pieces — drained 1/2 medium yellow onion — sliced thin and separated into rings 2 stalks celery — sliced small 2 tablespoons butter 1/2 cup heavy cream 1/4 cup mayonnaise (not salad dressing; look for “real mayonnaise” or make it) 1 cup assorted cheeses cut into small dice 3/4 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon pepper 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Instructions Melt the butter in a skillet and sauté the onions, celery and mushrooms until soft(about 7-8 minutes). Mix the mayonnaise and cream. Mix everything together in a casserole and bake at 350 F, covered, for 30 minutes. Uncover and brown if desired.
12 total grams of carbs per serving, with 4 grams of fiber, leaving 8 grams of usable carbs
Adapted from a recipe by the Campbell Soup Company
2 Campbell Kitchen’s archived page above
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