Recipes / Shiny Edamame

Shiny Edamame

By Mark Bittman

Published July 9, 2024

These sort of crunchy beans look like green peanuts and taste a little nutty. They’re actually young soybeans. You’ll find edamame with frozen vegetables either out of their pods or still in them. The variation gives the steps for cooking them in the shell—and eating them with your fingers.

Photo: Ghazalle Badiozamani
Photo: Ghazalle Badiozamani
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Make The Recipe!

Shiny Edamame

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Makes 2 to 3 servings 1x

Time 15 minutes

Units Scale


  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen edamame (out of the pods)
  • Salt (if you like)
  • Additions from the list that follows (if you like)


  1. Put the water in a small bowl with the sesame oil, soy sauce, and sugar. Stir with a fork to make a little sauce.
  2. Put the vegetable oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium heat. When it’s hot and shimmering, add the edamame and stir until the beans are shiny all over, about 1 minute.
  3. Add the sauce to the skillet and adjust the heat so it bubbles a little and gives off some steam. Cook, stirring every minute or so, until the sauce becomes thick and shiny and the beans soften and get hot, about 5 minutes. If the pan gets dry before the beans are ready, add more water 1 teaspoon at a time.
  4. Turn off the heat, taste, add a little salt if you like, and stir. (If you’re adding any extras from the list that follows, stir them in now too.) Eat the beans hot or warm or refrigerate them for later to eat cold. (They’ll keep in an airtight container for several days.) You could also serve them with white rice or simply cooked noodles.

4 Extras to Add to Shiny Edamame
In or out of the shell, add any or all of these just before your last couple stirs:

  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 chopped scallion
  • Red chile flakes or chopped fresh red chile to taste
  • A squeeze of lemon juice

Did You Know …
Any bean works great stir-fried. As long as they’re not too mushy and you don’t stir them too much, they’ll turn out fine. Chickpeas and frozen lima beans are the firmest. Black beans are a close second.

– Recipe from How to Cook Everything Kids

Recipe variations

Shiny Edamame in the Pod
Fun for snacking. The recipe stays the same except use 3 cups frozen edamame in their pods and make the sauce with 3/4 cup water. The beans will take between 5 and 10 minutes to get tender. To eat, let them cool, then grab a pod between your teeth and squeeze the beans into your mouth like toothpaste or sideways like you’re gnawing on corn on the cob. (They’re also good cold.)