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  • Bettina Applewhite

Za'atar and Lemony Green Beans

Za'atar is a spice and combination of spices that are used in North Africa and the Middle East. You may not have heard of it but if you give it a try, I'm sure you'll love it and will be sprinkling it on everything from eggs to these tasty green beans.

Za'atar is a spice blend. And just like "cajun spice" there are many different combinations and spins on the blend. It's usually made up of dried oregano, thyme, toasted sesame seeds, and sumac. Some blends may even have dried orange peel and dill and salt. There are different brands that have their own combinations so you can keep trying them out until you find one you like. Or if you are a za'atar expert, you can try your own combinations.

Green beans are a great side dish but can become boring when you prepare it the same way over and over again. This recipe will bring a unique spice to your vegetables. This is an easy recipe and pretty quick after your water boils. It's true that waiting on water to boil is the longest period of time known to man.

Quickly blanch your green beans in boiling water and finish them off stovetop with za'atar and lemon zest. Easy and delicious.

Za'atar and Lemon Green Beans

Serves 4


1 lb Green Beans, fresh and trimmed

1 Tbsp Olive Oil

1/2 Tbsp Za'atar

Zest of Half Lemon

Salt & Pepper


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Drop in green beans and cook for 3 - 3 minutes until tender but still crisp.

  2. Remove from boiling water and place in a large bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. Let sit for 1 minute then drain. (Green beans can be made ahead to this step and kept in the fridge until ready to continue.)

  3. Heat olive oil in a large skillet and add green beans. Toss in za'atar, lemon zest, and salt and pepper, to taste. Continue to cook until heated through which should only take 5 minutes or so.

  4. Enjoy your new favorite side!


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