Collard Greens (Paleo, AIP-Friendly)

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Mar 10, 2011 at 5:07pm

collard greens

I’ve been meaning to post this recipe since the holidays, when I brought this dish to my aunt Mary & uncle Bruce’s house for Christmas Day. Time flies…

Actually, time doesn’t fly in Minnesota between December and March, so I’m not sure what my excuse is. But no matter, here it is.

Collard greens, for you (we) northerners, require longer cooking than say Swiss chard, spinach, or kale. But that’s what makes collards amazing – a slow simmer allows them to bathe long enough in smoky, porky broth to emerge…smoky and porky. And meltingly tender.

Irresistible. Doubters, trust me.

It’s probably far from traditional, but I’m all about crispy pork, and from North Dakota, so I pull apart whatever I’ve used (smoked ham hock or shank, kielbasa) and brown in a little butter – yep – and make a meal of it.

Collard Greens
Adapted from Paula Deen via
Serves 4-6

1/2 lb. smoked meat (ham hocks or shanks, smoked turkey wings, or smoked neck bones)
1 Tbsp. house seasoning (below)
1 Tbsp. salt
1 Tbsp. hot red pepper sauce (omit for AIP)
1 large bunch collard greens
1 Tbsp. butter (omit for AIP)

In a large pot, bring 3 quarts of water to a boil and add smoked meat, house seasoning, salt, and hot sauce. Reduce heat to medium and cook 1 hour (uncovered).

Wash collard greens thoroughly. Remove the stems that run down the center by holding the leaf in your left hand and stripping the leaf down with your right hand. The tender young leaves in the heart of the collards don’t need to be stripped. Stack 6-8 leaves on top of one another roll up, and slice into 1/2- to 1-inch thick slices. Place greens in pot with meat and add butter. Cook 45-60 minutes, stirring occasionally, until just tender. Adjust seasoning when done.

House Seasoning
1/2 c. salt
2 Tbsp. black pepper (omit for first stage of AIP)
2 Tbsp. garlic powder

Mix ingredients together and store in an airtight container for up to 6 months.

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Older Comments

  1. By FreshTartSteph on March 17, 2011 at 4:45PM

    Mmmmmmm, the hot sauce totally makes it, I agree completely. I'll try next time leaving the stems, good tip. Thank you!

  2. By smileyface on March 16, 2011 at 5:09PM

    My parents are from Georgia and although I grew up in NY it was always the south in my house in terms of what my mom cooked. This recipe sounds fairly close to how my mom cooks hers. The only thing is that you don't have to remove the stems. When my mom makes greens I always wash and cut them and I don't remove the stems. When you cook them they get really soft and they're good to eat.

    I love to eat my greens over white rice with a dash or two of hot sauce. DELICIOUS!!!!

  3. By FreshTartSteph on March 15, 2011 at 6:30AM

    Definitely - couldn't be easier. I actually left the house while they simmered - ran my dog to the vet, ha! Add garlic to your heart's desire, mmm.

  4. By Mavs2980 on March 14, 2011 at 7:06PM

    Love collard greens, especially with a lot of garlic in them! Never made them myself, I will have to try one of these days!

  5. By FreshTartSteph on March 14, 2011 at 8:38AM

    Minneville - Cool story! They really are so delicious, in so many ways. Love the idea of adapting with Asian seasoning, which I haven't experimented with. Yum.
    Anonymous - I'm open to a splash of vinegar, good call, thanks!

  6. By Anonymous on March 14, 2011 at 8:16AM

    What!?! No splash of apple cider vinegar?
    Fail! ;)

  7. By minneville on March 11, 2011 at 9:14PM

    I love collard greens. When I first moved here to the Twin Cities ( and before I found out about farmers markets), I didn't know where to find Asian greens, which I grew up with and had no problems in getting them in my previous hometown LA. So I ended up with collard greens and turnip greens as substitutes. They turned out great and I was hooked ever since.

  8. By FreshTartSteph on March 11, 2011 at 11:56AM

    Yes, raw collards might be pretty chewy, can't pull it off the way you can kale or chard. And thanks Mindy! I would love to have some real Southern collards...some day soon.

  9. By Mindy W. on March 11, 2011 at 8:32AM

    I hadn't ever had collard greens until I moved to the south about 10 years ago. Now I get collards every summer in my CSA! I'll definitely be trying this recipe when they come around again!

  10. By manda2177 on March 11, 2011 at 7:08AM

    Just might have to try these sometime... cant say I have ever eaten them cooked! :)