Pressure steamed green beans

11 Dec

Ever had steamed green beans that are overcooked, limp, tasteless and that inadvertently squirts its tasteless watery juices across the table when you bite on them?

Yes I’m talking about those nasty stuff found in most cafeterias. Work or college cafeterias — had them in both. So I set out on a mission to experiment with steaming green beans in the pressure cooker.

Why the pressure cooker? I could easily have stir fried them.

But no, I had invested in a pressure cooker and I was determined to use it for EVERYTHING if I could help it. Plus being in my 8th month of my pregnancy, I really didn’t feel like standing in front of the stove. Green beans take quite some time to cook all the way through on the stove and I rather let the pressure cooker do the work while I sit down and drink a nice hot cup of tea.

Now I started out with a nice big pack of green beans from Costco. On to my experiment!

Attempt #1 yielded 3/4 cooked green beans. In order to salvage them and to feed my starving husband, I popped them into the microwave to cook some more. The taste was there but it was a matter of adjusting the cooking time to cook the green beans *JUST* right. I wanted the slight crunch without it being undercooked.

Attempt #2 yielded almost the same thing — I had tweaked the pressure from Low to High. Still not good enough.

Attempt #3  Uncover green beans, keep same pressure and cooking time. Success!! 😀

Now the recipe below might be a little too sweet if you decide to stir-fry the green beans, I added slightly more ‘seasonings’ just because there will be water added to the bowl during the steaming process in the pressure cooker.

For months now, my daughter has avoided eating anything green. She used to happily eat her peas and asparagus but now I’ve had to hide her vegetables in sauces or grind them up really fine so she wouldn’t taste them. These green beans are the ONLY vegetables that she’s picked up by herself, chewed on and wanted some more! I’m shocked and amazed yet gleefully happy — so to me this recipe is a definite winner!

Pressure steamed green beans

Serves: 4      Prep time:  10min      Cook time: 4 min in pressure cooker           <View/print recipe only>


  • 300g (0.7lb) of green beans, washed and cut into 1.5 in
  • 4 cloves garlic, pounded using the mortal and pestle (or use ready-fried garlic)
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 3 tsp light soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp oil


  1. Using a pressure cooker and microwaveable safe bowl/plate, put oil and raw garlic in the bowl and microwave for 1 minute. (Or you could stir fry the garlic in the oil using a pan on the stove.)
  2. Next, pour sugar, soy sauce and sesame oil into the bowl and mix well.
  3. Add the green beans and toss till well coated with the mixture.
  4. Pour 1 cup of water in the pressure cooker and place trivet and then the bowl on top.
  5. Close & lock the pressure cooker. Set to High Pressure and cook for 3 minutes.
  6. Once done, quick-release the pressure, open lid and remove bowl carefully. Stir/toss green beans and serve hot. Sprinkle some ready-fried garlic on top if you have some.
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Posted by on December 11, 2011 in Vegetable


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