This Easy Southern Succotash is a down home vegetable filled side dish packed with freshness and flavor. It features lima beans, fresh corn, and cherry tomatoes sautéed in bacon drippings with fragrant seasonings along with sweet Vidalia onion and red bell pepper. Succotash doesn’t have to be served as a side dish, it can become the centerpiece of the meal when spooned over a piece of hot buttered cornbread or rice, making a hearty and budget friendly dish come to life.
Easy Southern Succotash Recipe
Succotash is one of those simple dishes often associated with garden season in the South. While it’s roots aren’t inherently Southern, variations featuring okra make it ours to enjoy. I’ve read that during the Great Depression succotash became popular as it was tummy filling and inexpensive to make. Funny enough, I love it for those very same reasons today. Typically, those who grow their own produce would begin this dish with home grown lima beans putting their gardening bounty to good use. For those of us who don’t grow our own, frozen lima beans work like a charm.
How to Make the BEST Southern Succotash Recipe
As with every dish, this succotash has evolved in my kitchen through the years and this is how I prepare it for my family. I’m delighted to share it straight from my kitchen to yours.
- Ingredients you’ll need to make homemade Southern Style Succotash: Lima beans, red bell pepper, corn, cherry tomatoes, sweet onion (i.e. Vidalia onion or similar), bacon, apple cider vinegar, granulated garlic, seasoned salt, fresh tarragon, chives, black pepper and butter.
- Kitchen tools you’ll need: Large skillet, measuring cups and spoons, large spoon or silicone spatula and sharp knife and chopping board.
- Easy Succotash Variations: It’s not unusual here in the South for there to be variations of succotash using other shelled beans or the addition of different types of bell pepper and vegetables such as fresh okra. Every recipe has slight adaptations based on the cook’s preference or what you have on hand.
- Should you like to add okra to the mix, you can use 1 cup of frozen or fresh okra.
- To add a little heat to the mix, add 1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes. You can also serve hot sauce on the side so each person can adapt to their taste.
- If you prefer, fresh dill could be used in place of tarragon but I personally love the flavor tarragon gives.
- Store Southern Succotash chilled in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in single servings in the microwave or in a saucepan over medium heat.
More Southern Side Dishes to Make
- You may also like to try my Southern Style Creamed Corn.
- Stewed Okra with Tomatoes is delicious spooned over corn muffins.
- Easy Creamed Peas is a vintage dish that never gets old. You can add mini potatoes and pearl onions to the mix, too!
- My recipe for Fried Squash is a family favorite.
- Hillbilly Cole Slaw is dressed with a sweet and tangy vinegar based dressing.
- Fried Green Tomatoes recipe is the only one you’ll ever need.
- Chicken Succotash Pot Pie from Betty Crocker.
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Helpful Kitchen Items:
Easy Southern Succotash
- 1 16 oz bag frozen Lima beans
- 6 slices bacon
- 1 medium sweet Vidalia onion diced
- 1/3 cup diced red bell pepper
- 2 medium cloves garlic minced
- 3 cups fresh or frozen corn thawed
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes halved
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp chopped fresh tarragon
- 1 tsp seasoned salt More or less to taste
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 2 Tbsp chopped fresh chives
- Cook the Lima beans in salted water per the package directions. Drain and set aside. (Reserve 1 cup cooking liquid)
- In a large skillet cook the bacon slices over medium-high until crisp. Remove to paper towels to drain then chop. Reserve 3 Tbsp drippings freeze the rest.
- In the drippings, cook the onion and red pepper over medium-high for 2 minutes or until translucent and beginning to brown. Add garlic, cook for 1 minute longer.
- To the skillet, add the Lima beans, corn, cherry tomatoes, vinegar, tarragon, seasoned salt, black pepper, and reserved cooking liquid. Simmer over medium heat for 5 minutes or until the corn is tender.
- Add butter and stir until melted. Remove from heat.
- Mix-in chopped bacon and chives, serve immediately.