5 Things You Didn’t Know About Campbell’s Iconic Green Bean Casserole
We even got our hands on the original 1955 recipe card from the test kitchen.
No Thanksgiving spread is complete without it, but how much do you really know about the green bean casserole? In celebration of Campbell Soup Company's 150th anniversary, we got the low-down on the history of the classic six-ingredient dish from Chef Maria Gamble, Executive Chef, Campbell's Culinary & Innovation Hub.
It's a Campbell Original
The green bean casserole was created by Campbell test kitchen chef Dorcas Reilly in 1955. Her mission was to create a vegetable side dish that used on-hand ingredients and came together quickly. Reilly died last year at the age of 92. She also helped create hundreds of other dishes during her time at Campbell, including a tomato soup meatloaf, a tuna noodle casserole, and Sloppy Joe-like "souperburgers."
What's in a Name?
Now known as green bean casserole, its original name was actually "green bean bake."
It Hasn't Changed—Much
According to a Campbell representative, Worcestershire sauce was used in the development stage, but the Campbell test kitchen team wasn't pleased with the result so that ingredient was omitted and was never in the final recipe. A copy of the original recipe card also shows that celery salt was in Reilly's original 1955 version, but that too was nixed. They also played with adding slices of ham in 1959.
It Wasn't Always So Popular
Believe it or not, but Reilly's green bean casserole was not an immediate hit. It didn't take off until years later when Campbell's put the recipe on the Cream of Mushroom soup can label and began to promote the recipe.
A Thanksgiving Institution
Today, the iconic green bean casserole is the most popular recipe ever to come out of Campbell's corporate kitchen. It will be enjoyed by an estimated 20 million families this Thanksgiving.