Romano beans with butter, shallots and chives A sweeter alternative to the common green bean, and made just as easily!

Romano beans with butter, shallots and chives

What are Romano beans?

If you’ve never tasted Romano beans, you’re in for a treat!

These broad, flat pods are similar to green snapping beans – you eat the entire pod and cook them the same way. But Romano beans are even sweeter and more tender than the common green bean.

These succulent beans are in season from late spring to mid-fall. Look for them at your local farmers’ market or gourmet greengrocer.

Grow your own Romano beans! A sunny patch of ground and 2 months’ time is all you need.

And if you have a sunny patch in your backyard, I encourage you to plant some. Romano beans are one of the most rewarding crops, producing vigorous plants that are loaded with the gorgeous pods within 2 months of seeding.

Here the sweetness of the delicious Romanos is accentuated by the mellowness of the shallots. The butter coats the beans with an irresistible creaminess while the chives add a bit of savoriness to the dish.

These simply prepared Romano beans make a terrific and versatile side dish – one that’ll make you come back for seconds… and possibly thirds!

Romano beans

Romano beans with butter, shallots and chives

serves 4
active time: 30 min

  1. 1 tablespoon sea salt for the blanching water
  2. 1 1/4 lbs (565 g) Romano beans or green beans – trimmed and cut on the diagonal in 2″ pieces (6 cups)
  3. 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  4. 3 shallots – skinned, quartered and thinly sliced (1 cup)
  5. 1/4 cup spring water
  6. 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  7. 1 bunch fresh chives – cut in 1/2″ pieces (use kitchen scissors) (1/4 cup)
  8. 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
  9. freshly ground black pepper to taste

  1. Step 1: Fill a large bowl with cold water and several ice cubes. Set aside. Bring 6 quarts of water to a boil. Add the salt and the beans. Blanch the beans for 4 minutes until tender but still a little crunchy (if using green beans, blanch for 3 minutes only). Scoop them out with a slotted spoon and transfer to the ice water bath until cool. Drain on clean kitchen towel. Pat dry and transfer to a bowl. Set aside.
  2. Cook’s note: The beans can be prepared to this point up to 4 hours ahead. Place in a sealed container and refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. Step 2: Heat a large heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and shallots. Sauté for 2 minutes until the shallots have softened and begin to turn pale-golden. Add the beans and water. Toss well and sauté for 1 minute until the beans are warmed through. Add the butter, chives, salt and pepper and toss well until the butter has completely melted. Remove from heat. Transfer to a platter or large bowl and serve immediately.

Romano beans with butter, shallots and chives

side vegetable, romano bean, shallot

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  • Reply Tonya July 25, 2016 at 1:15 am

    I added a table spoon of peanut sauce – sooo good. Romano beans have a similar taste to green beans, however the texture is has more meat and the taste is superior in my opinion. Fresh garlic from the garden really made this dish awesome.

    • Reply Viviane Bauquet Farre July 27, 2016 at 5:50 pm

      I’m delighted to hear this, Tonya. Thank you for your comment. I love the plump flesh of Romano bean!

    • Reply Dennis Phillips July 28, 2019 at 7:45 pm

      We discovered Romano beans from a grower at our Farmers market here in N. Idaho. We find them wonderfully superior in flavor to all other green beans.

  • Reply anna August 27, 2012 at 11:36 pm

    I must go shopping. Thanks for sharing

  • Reply Meg Houston Maker August 9, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    I grew Romanos for the first time this summer, and I adore them. They have a supple, almost creamy texture and are less vegetal than regular bush beans, which means they can be cooked for a little less time. I’ll have to try them with chives as you’ve done. Thanks for the tip, V!

    • Reply Viviane August 9, 2012 at 3:33 pm

      Meg! I’m so glad you love Romanos… My little bushes have been incredibly productive and we’ve been eating Romanos a couple of times a week – so delicious! Thank you for stopping by and for your wonderful comment!

  • Reply Parsley Sage August 5, 2012 at 10:47 am

    Oh man, I only recently discovered the joy of green beans and snap peas and such…I bet I would LOVE these! Fabulous side dish, darling 🙂

  • Reply foodwanderings August 4, 2012 at 5:31 pm

    I made romano beans in the past but winged it without much success. Am happy you posted a recipe I can bookmark Viviane. BTW been too long! 🙂

  • Reply Deb August 2, 2012 at 10:33 am

    I adore Romano beans! I had always thought they would be tough and chewy, but I was inspired to try them when I saw a recipe by Alice Waters. I prefer them to regular green beans and serch for them at the Farmer’s Market each summer. Your recipe is an irresistible way to enjoy these chubby green gems of summer!

    • Reply Viviane August 2, 2012 at 10:43 am

      Deb! I couldn’t have said this better myself… Thank you for stopping by and for your wonderful comment!

  • Reply Jenn and Seth August 2, 2012 at 10:13 am

    i’ve never had romano beans before, but i’d love to try them in this lovely dish!

  • Reply Lori Lynn August 2, 2012 at 9:13 am

    No, I’ve never seen these before. Thanks for the introduction Viviane! Will definitely look for them at the Farmers Market. Your recipe sounds perfect.

  • Reply CCU August 1, 2012 at 5:03 pm

    Romano beans are a big favourite my friend, I love your style of cooking them 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  • Reply Cucina49 August 1, 2012 at 2:33 pm

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen Romano beans–but I like this recipe. How do you think it would be using snow peas?

    • Reply Viviane August 1, 2012 at 4:33 pm

      Cucina49, You probably could use snow peas here, but their flavor profile is not at all like beans. So my first choice for a substitute would be green beans.

  • Reply torviewtoronto July 31, 2012 at 11:31 pm

    delicious healthy side looks wonderful

  • Reply sara July 31, 2012 at 7:55 pm

    I don’t think I’ve ever had romano beans…these look really delicious, I will definitely have to look for them at the market!

    • Reply Viviane August 1, 2012 at 4:31 pm

      You’ll love Romano beans Sara!

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