This wax bean stew recipe uses Romano or Capitano yellow wax beans and it is sooo tasteful and delicious that you should cook it often. It’s healthy, too.
Beans are healthy and you should include more of them in your diet. I grew up eating this wax beans stew because my grandpa and grandma were planting it in the garden.
Especially on early summer (being their season) – my grandma took it directly from the bushes and cook it right away.
It was either this delicious stew, or just simply boiled in salted water and served with lots of crushed garlic sauce on top as these fried zucchini medallions. Yum!
The secret to a delicious wax bean recipe is to use young fresh bean pods that snap at breaking points and before they develop strings. They are kind of sweet and have mild, specific flavor.
And as we, Romanians, make stews out of almost everything, surely we could not miss green or yellow beans.
Exactly, this stew can be made with green beans too – just that they differ a bit in taste and cooking method.
Green beans is first cooked separately, boiled in salted water and added to the stew at the last step. This yellow wax bean is cooked directly in tomato sauce as you’ll see below.
If you like stews, make sure you check out my cabbage and sausage stew and white beans stew, 2 of the most cooked traditional Romanian stews. You’ll find other recommended stew recipes at the end of this article.
So, let’s start cooking.
🍅 Ingredients Needed
The major difference in deliciousness of this stew is made by the quality of ingredients used. Use ripe sweet tomatoes, young beans and preferably smoked meat.
- Yellow wax beans – fresh, young beans
- Tomatoes – ripe, good quality tomatoes
- Smoked bacon, pork belly or sausages – you can use other meats, but pork is my top choice for the flavor it brings to this meal
- Onion – yellow or white onions are fine
- Garlic – some garlic cloves for the flavor
- Salt and pepper for seasoning
- Cooking oil
- Fresh dill to garnish
- Sour cream to serve (optional)
🍲 How To Make This Wax Beans Stew
1. Prep ingredients
Clean and wash the beans. Trim the ends and break them in 2. Set aside in a colander.
Wash, peel and finely cut tomatoes. You can grate them if in a hurry, but they will disintegrate in the sauce. I prefer to maintain a good consistency of the sauce and cut them in small pieces. Plus, my grandma never grated tomatoes so neither do I. It takes more time but it’s totally worth it.
Cut the meat, sausage or bacon in small pieces. Finely chop the onions and 1 garlic clove.
2. Make the sauce
Pour cooking oil in a large pot and place on medium heat. Color the meat, bacon or sausages and set aside.
Next, saute the chopped onions and garlic until translucent and starts to color. Add tomatoes and stir. Let tomatoes simmer for 10 minutes partially covered to release acidity and reduce a bit.
3. Add the beans
Season with salt and pepper and add the beans. Mix well so all the beans are bathed in this delicious tomato sauce. Add a little water if necessary. Let them cook in this sauce for about 40 minutes until done but still a little al dente.
Keep the pot partially covered and mix several times to ensure that all beans cook evenly. When the beans are almost cooked, add the meat and let them cook together another 10 minutes to blend flavors.
If you need more color and taste you can add 1 tsp of tomato paste. Mix and adjust seasoning with salt, pepper and 1 tsp of sugar if necessary. Add slices of the remaining garlic cloves and let it cook another 5 minutes.
Taste a pod and a bit of meat and if everything is done, turn off the heat and sprinkle with freshly chopped dill on top.
🍽️ Serving Wax Beans Stew
Serve this bean stew immediately with more fresh dill and a dollop of sour cream (optional). Complement it with any seasonal salad. It’s incredibly tasty and special.
- Let it cool and store well covered into refrigerator up to 4 days. It reheats very well on stove when needed.
- You can freeze it in air tight containers up to 3 months.
Tip*: Don’t lose the recipe!
If you’re in a hurry, pin it NOW & save for later.
More delicious stews from Romanian cuisine:
- Cabbage And Sausage Stew (stewed cabbage in same delicious sauce)
- White Beans Stew (same sauce but more aromatic flavors)
- Chicken Green Peas Stew (children will love it)
- Stewed Eggplant And Pork (my grandpa’s favorite meal)
- Pork And Potato Stew (tasty, flavored, a favorite recipe)
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Yellow Wax Beans Stew Recipe
- 2.2 lbs (1kg) young fresh yellow wax beans
- 3.3 lbs (1.5kg) ripe tomatoes
- 1.5 lbs (700g) bacon/ pork belly / sausages (preferably smoked)
- 2 yellow onions
- 5 garlic cloves
- 1 tsp tomato paste (if needed)
- salt and pepper (to taste)
- 3-4 tbsp cooking oil
- 1 bunch fresh dill
- Wash the yellow wax beans and trim the ends. Break them in 2. Set aside. Wash, peel and finely cut tomatoes. Set aside. Chop the onions and slice 1 garlic clove. Cut the meat in small pieces.
- In a large pot heat the oil and seal and color the meat. Take it out and set aside. Add the chopped onion and sliced garlic clove and saute until softens and starts to color. Add tomatoes and let the sauce reduce 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add the beans and cover them in sauce, adding a little warm water if necessary. Let them cook partially covered on medium heat and release all their delicious flavors until al dente. This will take approximately 35-40 minutes depending on the beans. Add the meat and cook for another 10 minutes. Slice the remaining 4 garlic cloves and add them too. If tomatoes were not ripe and sweet you can optionally add 1 tsp tomato paste to enhance the sauce. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Correct the acidity if needed with 1 tsp sugar (optional).
- If the meat and beans are done, turn off the flame and sprinkle with a handful of finely chopped fresh dill. Serve immediately with crusty bread and a seasonal salad. A dollop of sour cream on top takes all those flavors at higher levels so is optional but highly recommended.