Healthy Collard Greens

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Collard Greens has been know as a winter cruciferous vegetable but the nutritional value is incredible. One cup of collards provides similar calcium content to a glass of milk. In addition, collard greens have magnesium, phosphorus, vitamin C, vitamin A and K, beta-carotene, and more than 200 mg of potassium. Collards provides cancer-fighting phytochemicals and excellent nutrients for eye health. Collards has been a cooking staple for Soul Food and Southern cooking but the problem is that this way of cooking collards consists of bacon or salted pork. I have made a heart healthy way of cooking collards and to keep the delicious nutrients.

Further Food Nutritionist Commentary:

As a fellow Southerner, I agree with Denine that the collards prepared around here are typically not the best for you. This recipe allows you to still enjoy Southern soul food, without the additional fat or sodium. When shopping, you will usually find that stock is lower in sodium than broth. Or try making your own stock with leftover vegetable scraps or chicken bones. Collards are chock-full of nutrients, as Denine mentioned. This recipe is especially rich in vitamin A, an important piece for our eye health and vision, as well as beta carotene, which is converted to vitamin A by our body. Phytochemicals are chemicals naturally present in plants that protect them from bugs and other threats while growing. These phytochemicals are thought to play an key role in disease prevention.
If you are trying to follow a low-sodium diet, keep in mind that hot sauce can be very high in sodium. Tabasco and Cholula are good low-sodium hot sauce options. Keep in mind portion size when using hot sauce, a little can go a long way.

By Alex Lane MS, RDN/LD

Healthy Collard Greens

  • Prep Time: 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Servings: 4

Ingredients

1 ounce (2 tablespoons) olive oil
1 garlic clove, smashed
2 small bunches collard greens (about 1 1/2 pounds), stems removed, leaves cut crosswise into 1/2-inch strips
3/4 cup homemade or store-bought low-sodium vegetable stock
3 tablespoons white-wine vinegar
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
coarse salt and ground pepper
hot sauce, for serving (optional)

Instructions

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and the garlic in a large pot over medium-high heat.
  2. Bring vegetable stock, white-wine vinegar and pepper flakes to a boil into the large pot.
  3. Add collard greens; reduce heat to a simmer, and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes.
  4. Season with salt and pepper. Serve greens with liquid spooned over the top.
Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and the garlic in a large pot over medium-high heat. Bring vegetable stock, white-wine vinegar and pepper flakes to a boil into the large pot. Add collard greens; reduce heat to a simmer, and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Serve greens with liquid spooned over the top.

Nutrition Information

Per Serving:  Calories: 129; Total Fat: 8 g; Saturated Fat: 1 g; Monounsaturated Fat: 5 g; Polyunsaturated Fat: 1 g; Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 342 mg; Potassium: 373 mg; Carbohydrate: 11 g; Fiber: 7 g; Sugar: 1 g; Protein: 5 g
Nutrition bonus: Vit A: 172%; Vit C: 101%;Calcium: 39% Iron: 5%;
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