Sauteed Collard Greens: Southern US New Years Good Luck FoodYou can’t have black-eyed peas without a good mess of collard greens. Especially if you cooking for New Years Day! It’s all about eating your way into good luck for the New Year.

Now I’m going to talk a little sacrilegious about the Southern way of cooking collard greens. The Southern traditionalists love to boil collard greens with fat back, ham hocks or bacon, a little garlic and vinegar for hours. Literally hours.

Some start cooking the collards up to eight hours in advance, others two or three hours.

Sauteed Collard Greens: Southern US New Years Good Luck FoodSounds delicious right?

Plenty of people will say yes. I’m not one of them

Once done, the collard greens turn a weird yellow-green-brown color and resemble nothing like the gorgeous dark green leaves they started out as. Hubby describes them as resembling a pile of dog poo and tasting just as bad.

I always laugh at him but I don’t have a fondness for the traditional way of cooking them either.

Black-Eyed Peas, Sauteed Collard Greens and Cornbread: Southern US New Years Good Luck FoodsInstead, I saute mine with bacon, garlic, red pepper flakes, vinegar, dark brown sugar and a little lemon juice for 15 to 20 minutes. If I want to speed them up, I blanch the greens for about four minutes before tossing them in for sauteing.

The collards hold their beautiful green and wilt into a mess of beautiful tasty yumminess. It’s all the traditional flavors without overcooking the greens.

For those who want the vegetarian version, leave out the bacon and use a little oil.

Sauteed Collard GreensI also love that this recipe takes less 30 minutes to cook these greens up, instead of the hours. Paired with my Pressure Cooked Black-Eyed Pea recipe, you can have both dishes ready to eat in less than 30 minutes. The only thing that’ll take longer is baking up the Southern cornbread.

So bring in your New Year right with a mess of Southern Sautéed Collard Greens, Black-Eyed Peas and Cornbread. I can guarantee your New Year will be a little luckier just from having this delicious meal.

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Sauteed Collard Greens Yum
Delicious collard greens sauteed in olive oil, garlic, red pepper flakes and bacon.
Sauteed Collard Greens
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 to 20 minutes
4 to 6 servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 to 20 minutes
4 to 6 servings
Sauteed Collard Greens
  1. Heat olive oil and cut bacon in a large pot over medium-low heat.
  2. Cook bacon, slowly, until bacon is golden brown before adding garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook until fragrant.
  3. Add collard greens.
  4. Pour in vinegar and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Saute collard greens until tender but still bright green. Do not overcook.
  6. Remove from heat and check seasoning again. Serve hot.
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Enjoy more recipes for bringing luck in the New Year:

Pinto Beans, Kale and Ham on Green Chili Cornbread Waffles from Simply Sophisticated Cooking

Baked Pork and Napa Cabbage Egg Rolls from Simple Seasonal

Festive Good Luck Cornbread Skillet from Spicy Southern Kitchen

Salad with Black Lentils and Herring from A Lemon Tree Cafe

Black-Eyed Peas, Spinach and Creamy Tomato Hand Pies from Grab a Plate

Pork Tenderloin with Apples and Grapes from The Food in my Beard

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