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Plant Based Smoky Southern Collard Greens

Author: Molly Patrick of Clean Food Dirty Girl


  • 1 cup yellow onion, diced (125g)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 cups vegetable broth (homemade or store-bought / 720ml)
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tablespoon 100% pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper (about 10 turns)
  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (leave out if you don't like spicy)
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 1 pound collard greens, thinly sliced (450g / about 14 full cups / discard stem before slicing)


  • Heat a large stock pot over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes, adding a splash of water and stirring if they start to stick. Stir in the garlic and cook for 2 additional minutes.
  • While this is cooking, take a medium-sized mixing bowl and add the broth, apple cider vinegar, smoked paprika, maple syrup, salt, black pepper and crushed red pepper flakes and whisk to combine. 
  • Pour the liquid mixture into the pot, along with the bay leaf and the collard greens.
  • Give it a stir, cover the pot with a lid and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 45 minutes, stirring once about halfway through. Remove and discard the bay leaf before serving.


If you want to use some of your stems for this recipe, just discard the fattest parts and then finely chop the rest and add them in with the rest of the greens.