Braised collard greens are simple to make and great to have on hand to eat on its own or as a nutritious side dish. It is jam-packed with nutrients and the pot liquor (the resulting broth from the braise) provides a nice flavorful sauciness to the greens and if you have excess, can be strained and reserved to use as a base for anything that calls for a vegetable broth.
If you don't have or can't find collard greens, feel free to substitue with swiss chard, kale, or any hearty leafy vegetables.
(weights are approximate)
1 large onion, diced, 300 grams
1 clove garlic, minced
3 large bunches collard greens, 450g
3 cups vegetable stock (or water)
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp olive oil (or neutral cooking oil)
Salt (to taste)
Sugar (to taste and balance)
1 bay leaf (optional)
½ red pepper flakes (optional)
Black pepper (optional)
- Rinse collard greens in a bowl of clean cold water and dry. Cut collard leaves away from the rib on both sides and set aside. Take a few of the ribs at a time (don’t toss these out as they provide texture and also nutrients) and cut into ⅛ to ¼ inch thick pieces and set aside in a bowl or plate. Stack 4-5 leaves at a time, roll long ways tightly into a cylinder, and carefully cut into thin strips approx. ¼ inch thick.
- In a large pot over medium heat, add enough olive oil (or neutral cooking oil) to coat the bottom of the pot (approximately 2 tbsp). Once oil is shimmering, add onions and garlic and sauté until onions have softened and are somewhat translucent. Add salt (to taste), bay leaf, red pepper flakes, and black pepper and mix well with the onions and garlic.
- Stir in the collard stems to give it a head start before adding the leafy greens. After 1-2 minutes, add the greens to the pot and slowly stir it around so the greens start to cook down. The greens will turn a darker shade of green as they soften. Add vegetable stock (or water) and apple cider vinegar and give it a stir to combine well. Taste the mixture and add more salt and a small pinch or two of sugar to help balance out the acidity, if necessary. (And remember, you can always add more salt later but you can not remove it!) Once the mixture comes to a simmer, cover with a lid and turn down to low heat.
- Simmer for 20 minutes and up to an hour - stirring periodically and to ensure there is enough liquid. Taste throughout to see if the seasoning needs adjustment and also to see if you like the texture of the greens. When done, greens will be soft (but not mushy) and the broth (pot liquor) will be nice and flavorful. Remove from pot and serve.