Braised Collards with Kielbasa Recipe

Swap out the bacon for kielbasa in this perfect dinner side.
Braised Collards with Kielbasa Recipe
Photo by Heami Lee

Servings: 4
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 1 hour


2 bunches of collard greens or other sturdy braising green such as kale or chard
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 Spanish onion, diced
2 teaspoons kosher salt
¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
¼ cup|60 ml sherry vinegar
1 cup|237 ml reserved pork cooking liquid, chicken stock, or water
1 pound|454 grams kielbasa sausage or other smoked sausage


  1. Make the greens: Clean the collard greens by removing the middle rib of each leaf. Tear each leaf into 2 to 3 inch pieces. Fill a large bowl or pot with cold water and add the leaves, washing them thoroughly – collards are notoriously sandy. Pat dry and set aside.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a medium pot over medium. Add the onion and salt and cook slowly until the onions are tender, about 10 minutes. Add the sugar and sherry vinegar and cook until the vinegar reduces by half, about 5 minutes.
  3. Pour in the reserved cooking liquid, stock or water and bring to a boil. Add the sausage and collard greens and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover the pot and cook until the greens are tender and silky, about 45 minutes. If the liquid reduces too much, add an additional ½ cup of water to the pot.
  4. Remove the sausage from cooking liquid, cut it into 1-inch thick slices, and return it to the pot of greens. At this point the greens can be cooled completely and stored for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

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