5 Things to do with Collard Greens
Are you in a spinach rut? Looking to expand your horizon of dark leafy greens? Let me introduce you to one of my favorites: the collard green.
Collard greens are nutrient-packed, rich in anti-oxidants, vitamins A, C and K, as well as folate and calcium. Unlike spinach, chard, and beet greens, collard greens don’t contain high amounts of oxalic acid (that stuff that makes your teeth squeaky when you eat too much spinach), an anti-nutrient that can deplete your body of important minerals. They’ve been shown to lower cholesterol, help prevent cancer, and support detoxification. And of course let’s not forget fiber – they’re full of it.
But what to do with these dark green wonders? They’re a little tougher than spinach or swiss chard, which can be a turn-off if you’re not sure how to use them properly. To get you started using this wonder green, here are five ways I use them often:
- In my morning frittata. A frittata is kind of like a crustless quiche, made with eggs and typically lots of veggies. This week my frittata included a little onion, some grated yellow zucchini, red pepper finely diced, and of course some finely chopped collard greens. Delicious! To make a frittata, saute your favorite veggies in a little extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, or butter from pastured cows. Whisk some eggs in a bowl and pour over the veggies. You can add in some herbs and spices to flavor it up. Let it cook slowly, without stirring. Pop it in the oven under the broiler for a couple of minutes at the end to cook the top. Voila! A yummy morning pizza.
- As a wrap. Watching the starchy-carbohydrates in your diet but love a nice burrito or wrap? Lightly steam a big collard green leaf and use it instead of the tortilla.
- As a bed for your chosen protein. I like to saute a little garlic and finely sliced onion in olive oil with a pinch of sea salt to bring out the flavors. Add some collard greens sliced into thin strips, and cook until a little wilted (about 3-4 minutes). Use this as a “bed” in a big bowl for some sliced grass-fed beef or broiled wild salmon.
- In a marinara sauce. I like to load up my marinara sauce with veggies, and I always include something that’s dark green. Collard greens, chopped into thin strips, are a great addition. They add some nice bulk, flavor and of course lots of nutritional goodies.
- In a veggie bean soup. Just the other day I made a curried vegetable black bean soup, and added some very thinly sliced collard greens toward the end of the cooking time. Super yummy.
Got some great tips of your own for using collard greens? Share them here! I’d love to try them.
(for detailed nutritional information on the health benefits of collard greens, check out The World’s Healthiest Foods)
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