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Egyptian Green Beans

A community recipe by

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This isn't the prettiest dish, but I really can't tell you how well the flavours make up for it! I call it Egyptian Beans, though it may be completely different from a truly Egyptian dish, it is from a memory I have of a trip to Egypt some two decades ago now. This keeps really well in the fridge, and possibly even tastes better after a day or so. Just another brilliance of this recipe I think. Don't serve them straight from the fridge though, either reheat or give them time to come up to room temperature.


Serves: 6+ (side dish)

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large red onion (cut into thin crescents)
  • 18 ounces green beans (topped)
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup tomato passata
  • 1 lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 3 tomatoes
  • seasoning
  • 1 splash of red wine vinegar


Egyptian Green Beans is a community recipe submitted by Coby and has not been tested by so we are not able to answer questions regarding this recipe.

  1. Heat the oil on a medium heat and add the onion crescents. Saute until they are soft, but not browned. Add to this the spices, garlic and beans.
  2. Toss the beans about in the spicy, garlicky oil. Turn up the heat, add the water, lemon juice*, diced tomatoes, seasonings and pasatta.
  3. Bring to the boil, reduce to a genuine bubbling simmer, cover and cook for one hour, giving it a stir now and then.
  4. After the hour, remove the lid, add the sugar (and you can taste to make sure you feel it needs that much sugar more or less) and simmer for a further half hour.
  5. You want your beans to be army khaki green and lovely and beyond tender. Once the beans are floppy and soft, turn off the heat and leave them sit.
  6. Serve beans warm or room temperature, drizzled with the extra evoo, and if you like the sweet and sour combo, add a splash of red wine vinegar.
  7. My family prefer without the wine vinegar, I prefer with (so added the vinegar to my serve).

Additional Information

Yes you could go with two tins of diced tomatoes and cut back on the water, but I quite liked adding the fresh tomatoes which are in season right now combined with the pasatta. I didn't bother skinning or even coring them, just cut them through the core and into rough dice (see photo that follows). The brown sugar was an afterthought. The lemon made the dish too tart, but I think adding the sugar is a better option than reducing the lemon, as so often tomatoes have an acidic edge to them anyway.

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