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Braised Collard Greens


Bacon gives these nutrient-rich greens an extra punch of flavor, from "Mad Hungry," by Lucinda Scala Quinn.

  • Servings: 6

Source: Mad Hungry, October 2010


  • 1 pound collard greens, trimmed and washed, water still clinging to the leaves
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 slices bacon, cut in half lengthwise and sliced crosswise in 1/2-inch pieces
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon red-wine vinegar
  • Coarse salt


  1. Remove the tough stems from the collard leaves. Finely slice the stems crosswise. Stack a few leaves on top of each other and cut into 1 1/2- to 2-inch pieces. Repeat with all leaves. You'll have 8 packed cups.

  2. Heat a 10-inch saute pan over high heat. Swirl in the oil and add the onion, bacon, and red pepper flakes. Fry until the onion is soft and the bacon is beginning to render its fat and crisp up, about 13 minutes.

  3. Add the greens, 2 cups at a time. Stir into the onion mixture as you add. They will collapse and shrink in the heat.

  4. When all the greens are in the pan and the heat has returned to sizzling high, pour in the vinegar. Stir to evaporate. Cover and let the greens cook over low heat until just tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Add a bit of water as needed to keep the greens from burning. Add salt to taste and serve.


Vegetarian version: Omit the bacon and use diced red bell pepper and/or diced tomato to make a seasoning base. Mince 1/2 red bell pepper or 1 tomato, or a combination of the two, and add to the pan in place of the bacon in Step 2. Cook for 8 instead of 13 minutes before proceeding to Step 3.

Cook's Notes

You can substitute collard greens with mustard greens, Swiss chard, dandelion greens, and beet greens. Adjust the cooking time down a few minutes to achieve desired tenderness.

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