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Grandma's collard greens recipe from Virgil's Real Barbecue

Collard greens are a must-have side with barbecue.
Collard greens are a must-have side with barbecue.
Will Budiaman

"Barbecue and collard greens just go naturally together, like Flatt and Scruggs. The marriage works so well because collard greens are a sturdy member of the cabbage family, with a dense nutty flavor and firm texture that matches up incredibly well with the spices and smoke in most barbecue. Collard greens are often heavily spiced, but our version is a little tamer; we cook our greens 'til they're nice and tender and the rich, sweet, buttery flavor comes right out. These greens are jam packed with vitamins and minerals — but we're betting you'll be more interested in the subtle blend of ever-so-slightly bitter and salty flavors. (Add hot sauce if you want a little more kick.)"

Neal Corman


  • ½ lb bacon, diced
  • 2 ½ lbs collard greens, stemmed and chopped
  • 3 c chicken stock
  • ¼ c white vinegar
  • 2 T granulated sugar
  • ¼ t Creole seasoning, such as Virgil's Creole Seasoning
  • ¼ t ground white pepper


1. Heat a large saucepan over high heat, and render the bacon until crisp.

2. Add the collard greens, and sauté until they begin to wilt. Add the remaining ingredients, and reduce the heat to a simmer.

3. Simmer the greens until tender, about 30 minutes.

Serves: 6-8

From "Virgil's Barbecue Road Trip Cookbook" by Neal Corman with Chris Peterson. Copyright (c) 2014 by Times Square Barbecue, Inc. Printed by permission of St. Martin's Press.

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