Instant pot collard greens is an easy way to make collard greens fast and with a lot of flavor. The addition of black eyed peas and bacon makes this a perfect healthy side dish that is nutritionally dense and high in protein.
I love using my pressure cooker to make soups and stews, or even basic foods but it also adds value to my life by being able to make healthy side dishes using dark leafy greens like kale, swiss chard or even to make the best collard greens.
What Are Collard Greens?
Collard greens are a tender leafy green with tough stems that is often found as a staple in southern cooking and are not the same thing as kale although they do belong to the same family that includes cabbage greens. They are naturally high in vitamins and minerals.
Collard greens are bitter in taste unless you cook them with the perfect blend of flavors.
Collard greens can be cooked in the instant pot or shredded raw into salads or even used as a vegan and gluten free alternative to tortillas, bread or wraps.
The Best Southern Collard Greens Recipe:
The best authentic southern collard greens are cooked with a savory meat, and something to sweeten it up. They are often slow cooked however, in this instant pot collard greens recipe with black eyed peas the ingredients I use include:
- Canned Black Eyed Peas – to add protein and to make the dish more hearty
- Canned Diced Tomatoes – this will give collard greens a tangy naturally salty kick
- Smoked Thick Cut Bacon – traditionally, collard greens have a savory meat that could be ham, brisket or bacon.
- Apple Cider Vinegar – this acidic vinegar helps cut down on the bitterness of the greens and has many health benefits!
- Stevia -Instead of using brown sugar, I used stevia to give it a slight sweetness to balance out all the flavors keeping it a sugar free side dish.
How To Clean Collard Greens:
Collard greens grow straight up from the ground making them easy to hold onto dirt and other impurites. To clean collard greens, add the leaves to a very large bowl or sink filled with water.
Swish them around until all dirt is loosened up.
Drain in a colander until fully dried.
How To Cook Collard Greens In Instant Pot:
- Thoroughly wash your collard greens and dry in a colander. Chop into large bite sized pieces. Set aside.
- Using the saute function, heat up the avocado oil until it is shiny. Add in raw chopped bacon and cook saute for about 5 minutes as it begins to cook down. Add in chopped onion and minced garlic. Saute another 5 minutes or until onions begin to become translucent.
- Add in collard greens, diced tomatoes, apple cider vinegar, stevia, and cayenne pepper. Greens will begin to wilt down as it comes in contact with heat. As the greens wilt, keep adding in raw greens until all of them fit in the instant pot.
- Pour in ½ cup water, vegetable or chicken stock.
- Cook on high pressure for 5 minutes. Use a manual release or natural release. Serve hot.
Reader Questions and Recipe Tips:
Should I remove collard greens stems? If you are making collard greens in the instant pot, the stems do not need to be removed. Since the instant pot will cook the greens at high pressure, the stems will become tender. For salads and wraps, remove the tough stem.
Already Chopped and Cut Collard Greens are a great option if you want to take a shortcut. You can find these in your grocery store in the produce section.
How Long Do I Cook Collard Greens In The Instant Pot? Since this tender green cooks very quickly, you may find that it starts wilting just from the heat of sauteeing the bacon and onion. Collard greens will pressure cook on high for 5 minutes and will be fully cooked and soft.
How long do cook collard greens last? Store any unused collard greens in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 7 days. They can be re-heated in the microwave or by sauteing in a pot or skillet over medium heat until warmed through.
To Make Instant Pot Collard Greens Keto: simply omit the canned black eyed peas in this recipe
Instant Pot Collard Greens With Black Eyed Peas
- 2 lbs Collard Greens With Stems
- 4 slices Uncooked Bacon chopped
- 1 15 oz Can Black-Eyed Peas
- 1 cup White Onion diced
- 2 tsp Garlic minced
- 2 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 can Diced Tomatoes
- ½ cup Chicken or Vegetable Stock
- ½ tsp Smoked Paprika
- ⅛ tsp Cayenne Pepper
- 1 tsp Sea Salt
- Wash and dry your collard greens thoroughly and chop into large bite sized pieces with the stems on. Alternatively, you could purchase a bag of pre-chopped collard greens to save time.
- Turn instant pot to saute function on high. Add in chopped bacon and saute for 5-8 minutes or until bacon starts to brown. Add in diced onion, garlic, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, and salt and continue to saute until onion becomes translucent (about another 5 minutes).
- Add in your raw, chopped collard greens in batches. As they begin to wilt, stir them in with the bacon garlic and onion mixture and keep adding raw greens until they all fit in the instant pot.
- Add in the apple cider vinegar, canned tomatoes (not drained), stock and stevia and toss with tongs until everything is combined.
- Pressure cook on HIGH for 3 minutes and use a quick release once finished cooking. Adjust any seasonings if necessary. Rinse and drain canned black eyed peas and toss with cooked collard greens.
Valerie Skinner is a Whole30 approved personal chef & recipe developer that bridges the gap between healthy eating and busy lives by providing simple healthy meals and recipes for you and your family.
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