Definition of snap bean in US English:

snap bean


North American
  • A bean of a variety grown for its edible pods.

    • ‘Unlike dry beans, snap beans are eaten as flavorful, fleshy green pods.’
    • ‘Usually considered a fresh shelling or dry bean, young pods also can be eaten as snap beans, sliced and added to salads, or steamed whole and added to any meat or poultry dish.’
    • ‘These are snap beans right here; we plant about an acre each week and there are eleven varieties, one of which is a baby haricot vert.’
    • ‘Extend your harvest into fall by planting second crops of short-season vegetables, such as snap beans, peas, greens, radishes, cole crops, and turnips later in the season so they mature after you harvest the first crop.’
    • ‘Middle to late August is a good time to plant carrots, beets, snap beans and lettuce.’


Late 18th century: so named because the pods are broken into pieces to be eaten.