Skinny Chinese Green Beans

Skinny Chinese Green Beans just like you love from the Chinese buffet with a spicy garlic sauce but without the frying or excess oil. Skinny Chinese Green Beans  Skinny Chinese Green Beans

Chinese Green Beans are a buffet favorite for us. I always load up half my plate with these, then allow for just a small scoop of rice along with some sort of stir fry that’s available.

The problem with most chinese buffet recipes is that they are normally made with large amounts of oil, frying almost everything. The green beans are no exception.

In our case we steam the green beans before adding the oil, this allows us to mostly cook without the oil. If you’d prefer to make these green beans 0 points per serving you could certainly leave out the oil, but adding the small amount we do (which makes these green beans just one point per serving) is great for helping to bloom the flavors of the garlic and the chili paste.

How to Trim Green Beans:

Wash the green beans well, then line them up with the tougher, stem side ends all  in row and slice off a half inch on the stem side of the green beans. There is no need to trim the tapered end of the green beans, it is tender enough to eat.

How to Cook Green Beans:

If steaming, add to a steaming basket and cook for 4-5 minutes on high heat or for 3-4 minutes in a microwave covered with a dripping wet paper towel.

If sautéing, steam for 3-4 minutes, then continue to cook in the skillet with sauce for an additional 1-2 minutes.

Chinese Buffet Green Beans

More Easy Asian Recipes:

Tools Used in the making of this Skinny Chinese Green Beans:
Stainless Steel Skillet: Perfect for a quick stir fry or if you’d like to keep things more authentic, this wok is best.
Soy Sauce: Only ever use this brand, always in the lower sodium variety.
Chili Garlic Paste: I always use this brand because the punch of flavor is awesome and it keeps in the fridge for a very long time.

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Skinny Chinese Green Beans

Skinny Chinese Green Beans just like you love from the Chinese buffet with a spicy garlic sauce but without the frying or excess oil.
Yield 4 servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes


  • 1 pound green beans
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 2 teaspoons chili garlic paste
  • 1 green onion thinly sliced, green part only
  • 1 tablespoon garlic
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • sesame seeds for garnish (optional)


  • To a wok with a lid (or a steaming pot with a lid) add the green beans and 1 cup water on high heat.
  • Steam for 3-4 minutes, then drain any remaining water and set green beans aside.
  • Add the canola oil and heat on medium-high heat.
  • Add the green beans and stir fry them for 1-2 minutes.
  • Add in the garlic, green onions, chili-garlic paste and stir to combine.
  • Cook the garlic mixture for 30 seconds to a minute then add in the soy sauce, rice vinegar, sugar, water and chili flakes.
  • Cook for an additional 1-2 minutes or until most of the liquids are completely cooked off.
  • Garnish with sesame seeds if desired.


Serving: 1/4 recipe | Calories: 67kcal | Carbohydrates: 6.5g | Protein: 1.6g | Fat: 3.6g | Saturated Fat: 0.3g | Sodium: 852mg | Fiber: 2.5g | Sugar: 3.5g
Chinese Buffet Green Beans
Spicy Garlic Green Beans

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a trained professional chef who has cooked for private clients for over a dozen years. Experienced in handling dietary restrictions, allergies and picky kid eaters, she's well versed in coming up with healthy, yet flavorful recipes.


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  1. I love finding recipes that give me healthier versions of my favorite restaurant foods! These skinny green beans may become my weekly norm. They are mouth-watering!

  2. What are the ingredients/amounts? I can see everything in the recipe post except for the ingredients. The only one visible is the sesame seeds. I’ve tried on multiple devices and browsers, and I would love to be able to make this recipe.

    1. Kat, thanks so much for catching this! The ingredients were removed by a glitch but they’ve been restored now.

  3. Sabrina what happened to the smart points for your recipes?  I love your recipes and noticed they are gone. I didn’t get all the recipes printed off that I use, anywhere I can get the point values? Thank you in advance.

    1. Janealma, thank you for kind words about my recipes. Unfortunately, Weight Watchers has requested that I remove point values from my recipes. If you want to know the points for my recipes, you’ll have to use their recipe builder so that you get the full benefit of their 0-point ingredients.