Chinese Green Beans

Chinese Green Beans Recipe

 The Spruce

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 30 mins
Servings: 3 to 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
210 Calories
5g Fat
33g Carbs
11g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 3 to 4
Amount per serving
Calories 210
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 5g 6%
Saturated Fat 1g 3%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 310mg 13%
Total Carbohydrate 33g 12%
Dietary Fiber 12g 41%
Protein 11g
Calcium 88mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This popular Sichuan dish is a staple at many Chinese restaurant buffets. What makes it characteristic of Szechuan cooking is not only the added spice but also the technique of dry-frying. Dry-frying isn't totally "dry," but you do use less oil and cook the vegetable for longer than if you were stir-frying. The idea is to dehydrate the green beans, concentrating the flavor and making them nice and crispy and somewhat charred. The resulting wrinkled exterior creates little nooks and crannies, perfect for holding in the sauce, allowing you to use less and letting the vegetable take center stage.


Watch Now: Delicious Chinese Green Bean Recipe


  • 1 pound green beans
  • For the Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon bean sauce 
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
  • Other Stir-Fry Ingredients
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil (or peanut oil, divided)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 1 tablespoon chopped ginger
  • 2 scallions (white part only, chopped)
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili paste

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Chinese Green Beans Recipe ingredients
     The Spruce
  2. Wash the green beans and drain thoroughly. Trim the ends and cut on the diagonal into pieces approximately 2 inches long.

    Chinese Green Beans Recipe
     The Spruce
  3. Combine the sauce ingredients in a bowl and set aside.

    Chinese Green Beans Recipe
     The Spruce
  4. Heat the wok over medium heat and add 2 tablespoons oil, drizzling the oil down the sides of the wok.

    Chinese Green Beans Recipe
     The Spruce
  5. When the oil is hot, add the beans. Stir-fry for 7 to 10 minutes, until their skins pucker and turn brown and the green beans are tender without being mushy. Remove the beans from the wok.

    Chinese Green Beans Recipe
     The Spruce
  6. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in the wok over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the chopped garlic, ginger, and scallions. Stir-fry briefly for a few seconds until aromatic.

    Chinese Green Beans Recipe
     The Spruce
  7. Add the chili paste and stir to combine.

    Chinese Green Beans Recipe
     The Spruce
  8. Add the sauce and the green beans to the wok and toss the ingredients together.

    Chinese Green Beans Recipe
     The Spruce
  9. Serve hot and enjoy!

    Chinese Green Beans Recipe
     The Spruce


  • Chinese bean sauce is a mixture of fermented soybeans, water, salt, wheat flour, sugar, and sesame oil. It is available at Asian markets (Koon Chun is a good brand) but if you can't find any you can substitute hoisin sauce (although it is a bit sweeter than bean sauce).
  • You may come across other versions of bean sauce labeled "sweet bean paste," "black bean garlic sauce," or "spicy bean sauce." Each contains different ingredients from regular bean sauce and thus will impart a slightly different taste, but feel free to use if needed.
  • While a wok is the preferred cooking tool for this recipe, if you don't have one, you can still make these beans. Use the largest frying pan you have and get it as hot as possible.

Recipe Variations

  • This recipe calls for regular green beans, but if you like (and can find them) you can substitute Chinese green beans. They are thinner and longer than the standard bean. For a dramatic presentation, skip the step of cutting the beans into pieces and serve them whole.
  • You can also substitute 4 to 6 small dried red chilies for the chili paste, or cut down on a bit on the spice if you like your food milder tasting.