Green Bean Sabzi
50 Min

Green Bean Sabzi

In India, vegetarians do not make a meatless meal look or taste like meat. The meal should be triumphantly vegetarian; hearty, appetizing, nutritionally well balanced and satisfying, with a flair of its own. No processed, lab-grown meat or chunks made to taste and look like a chicken in sight.


Enter sabzi, a cooked, dry vegetable of sorts. Sabzi, dal (cooked spiced lentils) and rice or roti is perhaps the most common everyday meal in India. There are dozens and dozens of sabzis in every region of India, from potato, cauliflower, sautéed greens, bean, squash sabzis and so on. Here is a satisfying green bean and potato sabzi — enjoy it with roti, simple whole-wheat flatbread, and a simple dal made with yellow moong.

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Cook Time

50 Minutes



Step 1
Trim the beans and dice into tiny 1/4-inch wheels. Set aside. Dice the potatoes into 1/2-inch chunks and set aside separately.
Step 2
In a large saucepan, over high heat, warm the olive oil, and pop the mustard seeds. Immediately add the minced onions, lower the heat and cook the onions until translucent, about 7 to 8 minutes. Add the potatoes and minced garlic. Cover the saucepan and simmer the mixture for 5 to 7 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked through. If the mixture sticks to the bottom of the pan, add a tablespoon or two of water.
Step 3
Now add the beans, turmeric, red chilI, black pepper, cumin, tomatoes, ginger, and salt. Turn the heat to medium and let the mixture cook uncovered, stirring frequently, until the liquid from the tomatoes starts to reduce, about 8 to 10 minutes. The green beans should be cooked through yet remain bright green. If not, cover the saucepan, lower the heat and continue cooking for another 3 to 4 minutes.
Step 4
Turn the heat off and let the sabzi rest for 10 to 12 minutes. Serve with cilantro garnish.
1 pound local green beans or long beans
2 to 3 small red potatoes
1/4 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
1 cup minced onions
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon dried ground turmeric
1 teaspoon red chili powder
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cups fresh ripe tomatoes, diced
1 tablespoon unpeeled grated ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1/2 cup chopped cilantro, leaves and stems

Notes & Variations

  • If the green beans turn dark green, the sabzi will still taste just as good — add more chopped cilantro to give the appearance of bright green color when serving.
  • Instead of potato, use turnips, parsnips, carrots, or sweet potato.
  • Fold the sabzi with cooked rice, nuts (such as chopped cashews or almonds) and raisins or currants to create a pilaf.
50 Min

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Here are two side options that will go well with this green bean sabzi.