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Fasolka Szparagowa, also known as Green Beans à la Polonaise, is an easy side dish of green beans topped with toasted buttery breadcrumbs.

polish green beans on polish pottery platter on wooden table

Nothing beats fresh local summertime produce! In the middle of summer, one of my favorite meals is whatever seasonal veggies I have on hand. Things like buttered corn on the cob, thick slices of juicy tomatoes with a sprinkling of salt, and green beans. With fresh peaches or watermelon for dessert, summer dinner doesn’t get any better.

If you enjoy green beans, you’re going to love them cooked à la polonaise. In this recipe, sweet, snappy green beans are topped with buttery golden breadcrumbs with a hint of garlic and fresh herbs. It’s an easy side dish that pairs well with just about anything!

What is à la Polonaise?

The phrase à la polonaise is a French term that literally means “in the Polish style”.

Used in the culinary sense, this refers to the method of serving food (typically vegetables) topped with a mixture of breadcrumbs sautéed in butter. Sometimes herbs, garlic, lemon, and/or hard-boiled egg pressed through a fine mesh sieve are also added. Note that in Poland, the herbs used are commonly dill, parsley, and/or chives.

You’ll also find this called polonaise sauce or “zrumieniona bułka” in Polish. And in Poland this recipe is typically referred to as “fasolka szparagowa z bułką tartą”.

close up front view of fasolka szparagowa in bolesławiec pottery

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • It lets the green beans shine. They’re the star of the show, so let’s celebrate them when they’re in season! Go for locally-grown green beans for the freshest flavor.
  • This recipe isn’t fussy. It calls for minimal ingredients and you likely already have them in your kitchen.
  • You can pair this easy side dish with any main course you like. Green beans are a nutritious side dish that go well with just about anything from roast chicken dinner to grilled steak. You aren’t limited to dill as the herb here; feel free to swap it out for any fresh herb that pairs well with the rest of the meal.
close up of polish green beans with buttery toasted breadcrumbs on blue flowered ceramic platter

Pro Tip: Make Other Vegetables à la Polonaise

Any of the following vegetables are delicious served topped with buttery toasted breadcrumbs: cauliflower, yellow wax beans, asparagus, carrots, sugar snap peas, Brussels sprouts, etc. You can experiment and make this with your favorite veggie, and it’s also a delicious topping for chicken and fish!

Ingredients

Ingredients Explained

In this section I explain the ingredients and give substitution ideas where applicable. For the full recipe (including the ingredient amounts), see the recipe card below.

green beans polonaise ingredients
  • Salted butter – Or use unsalted butter and add a generous pinch of salt.
  • Garlic – I like to add a clove of fresh garlic to the buttery breadcrumbs for another layer of flavor. However, you can skip the garlic if you like.
  • Fresh bread crumbs – Save your stale bread to make fresh breadcrumbs! To do so, break up sliced bread into pieces, add it to a food processor, and pulse until you have breadcrumbs. (Or you can usually find fresh breadcrumbs in the bakery area of the grocery store.)
  • Green beans – Use fresh, local beans when they’re in season for the best flavor. Rinse them, trim off the stem ends, and you’re ready to go!
  • Herbs – To really bump up the flavor without overpowering it, garnish this dish with a little bit of fresh dill, parsley, or chives.
  • Freshly-cracked black pepper – This adds a touch of piquant flavor that balances the beans’ sweetness and buttered breadcrumbs’ richness. For the best flavor, use freshly-ground black pepper instead of pre-ground.

How to Make Fasolka Szparagowa (Polish Green Beans)

Make the Buttery Toasted Breadcrumb Topping

how to toast breadcrumbs
  1. Add the butter to a medium skillet over medium-low heat. Once melted, add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly.
  2. Stir in the bread crumbs, and cook until they’re light golden brown, about 4 to 5 minutes, turning the heat down as necessary so they don’t burn in patches. Once they’re toasted, immediately transfer the bread crumbs to a bowl to stop them from cooking.

Cook the Green Beans

cooking green beans

Bring a pot of water up to a boil. Once boiling, add a generous pinch of salt and the beans. Cook until they’re just fork-tender. I like them tender but with a touch of crunch, which takes about 4 to 5 minutes. Drain.

Serve

top view of polish Bolesławiec pottery with green beans polonaise

Transfer the beans to a platter. Top with the toasted bread crumbs, dill, and black pepper. Serve.

Storage and Reheating

This is one of those rare dishes that’s so easy and tastes so much better fresh that it’s worth making right before serving!

I recommend adding the toasted buttery breadcrumbs to the green beans right before you want to serve this recipe so the crumbs stay crisp.

Recipe Tips

  • As a matter of personal preference, I like the beans crisp-tender for this, but you can cook them longer if you want them softer.
  • To make this vegan, use olive oil or coconut oil instead of butter.
  • I like fresh breadcrumbs here, but dried breadcrumbs will also work. You can make fresh breadcrumbs by pulsing stale sliced bread in a food processor (use gluten free bread to make this recipe gluten free!), or look for fresh bread crumbs in the bakery area of the grocery store.
  • You can use frozen green beans here, but fresh are so much better! That’s why this recipe is a great option for summer when local green beans are in season in your area. For a delicious switch-up, try this with yellow wax beans too!
blanched beans with bread crumb topping on white plate on rustic dark wooden table

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Green Beans the Same as Haricots Verts?


The French term haricots verts (or singular: haricot vert) translates to “green beans”. You’ll also find them called French green beans or just French beans. This type of green bean is typically a bit thinner and more tender than other types of green beans.

Are Green Beans and String Beans the Same?


Yes! Green beans and string beans refer to the same vegetable.

The term string beans comes from the fact that historically, this type of bean had a string running down one side of the pod. However, most modern varieties of green beans have had the fibrous string bred out and are stringless.

How Do You Blanch Green Beans?


Fill a pot or large saucepan about 2/3 full with water, and bring it to a rolling boil. Add a generous amount of salt, and then add the beans. Cook until the beans are crisp-tender, which means they’re tender enough to bite into but still have a crisp texture or crunch when snapped in half. This takes about 2 to 5 minutes, depending on your preference.

When the beans are crisp-tender, drain them and immediately transfer them to a large bowl filled with ice water (called an ice bath). This will shock them and stop the cooking process so they retain their texture and color.

Should You Add Salt to Water When Blanching Green Beans?


Yes! For every 1 quart of water, use about 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons of coarse kosher salt.

Salting the water generously not only seasons the beans and enhances their flavor, but it also helps preserve their bright green color.

More Green Bean Recipes

hand serving polish green beans off of tray on wooden table

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Fasolka Szparagowa Recipe (Polish Green Beans)

Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Yields: 4 servings
Green Beans Polonaise (Fasolka Szparagowa) lets the flavor of green beans shine! It's an easy side dish of green beans topped with toasted buttery breadcrumbs.

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Ingredients
 

  • 4 tablespoons salted butter
  • 1 large clove garlic crushed
  • 3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs
  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh green beans stems trimmed off
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill or parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly-cracked black pepper

Instructions
 

  • Add the butter to a medium skillet over medium-low heat. Once melted, add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly.
  • Stir in the bread crumbs, and cook until they’re light golden brown, about 4 to 5 minutes, turning the heat down as necessary so they don’t burn in patches. Once they’re toasted, immediately transfer the bread crumbs to a bowl to stop them from cooking.
  • Bring a pot of water up to a boil. Once boiling, add a generous pinch of salt and the beans. Cook until they’re just fork-tender. I like them tender but with a touch of crunch, which takes about 4 to 5 minutes. Drain.
  • Transfer the beans to a platter. Top with the toasted bread crumbs, dill, and black pepper. Serve.

Video

Notes

  • Cook the Beans to Your Liking: As a matter of personal preference, I like the beans crisp-tender for this. However, you can boil or steam them longer if you want them softer.
  • Fresh or Dry Breadcrumbs: I like fresh breadcrumbs here, but dried breadcrumbs will also work. You can make fresh breadcrumbs by pulsing stale sliced bread in a food processor, or look for it in the bakery area of the grocery store.
  • If Possible Opt For Local Green Beans in Season: You can use frozen green beans here, but fresh are so much better! That’s why this recipe is a great option for summer when local green beans are in season in your area. For a delicious switch-up, try this with yellow wax beans too!
  • Vegan Version: Use olive oil or coconut oil instead of butter.
  • Gluten Free Version: Use gluten free breadcrumbs (or make your own breadcrumbs with gluten free bread).

Nutrition

Calories: 235kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 30mg | Sodium: 249mg | Potassium: 407mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 1532IU | Vitamin C: 21mg | Calcium: 105mg | Iron: 3mg

Nutritional information is automatically calculated and should be used as an approximate.

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Polish
Keyword: Fasolka Szparagowa, Green Beans à la Polonaise, Green Beans Polonaise, Polish Green Beans

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green beans polonaise recipe pin
Faith, author of An Edible Mosaic.
About Faith

I’m the writer, recipe developer, photographer, and food stylist behind this blog. I love finding the human connection through something we all do every day: eat! Food is a common ground that we can all relate to, and our tables tell a story. It’s my goal to inspire you to get in the kitchen, try something new, and find a favorite you didn’t know you had.

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