These long, thin bean pods are eaten while young and fresh before they become tough. Two types of green beans are string and snap. String beans have a fibrous string along the length of the bean that should be removed before eating. Snap beans are usually stringless.
Green beans: Also called snap or string beans, the standard for beans. Mild bean flavor, can be steamed, sautéed, roasted, or added to soups and salads.
Yellow wax beans: The same as green beans only in a pale yellow color.
Longbeans: Also the same as a green bean only longer, about 12 to 20 inches long. An Asian specialty vegetable with a strong bean flavor.
Butter beans: Compared to the lime bean with similar flavor, a nice mild creamy, starchy flavor that is quite nice in soups and salads.
Fava beans: Large spongy inedible pods with large wax-covered beans inside. Most people remove the waxy skin before preparing. They have a sweet and slightly nutty bean flavor. Can be mashed, boiled, or sautéed.
Fresh beans come in an array of tasty varieties with almost as many shapes and colors.