Looking for a flavorful and healthy side dish to accompany your next meal? Look no further than this authentic Brazilian Collard Greens recipe! This dish is easy to make and flavorful with simple ingredients, including fresh collard greens, onion, garlic, and olive oil. Whether you're a spicy red pepper flakes fan or prefer a milder flavor profile with ground black pepper, this recipe can be tailored to your tastes. So why not try something new and add this Brazilian favorite to your recipe collection today?
- What is Brazilian Collard Greens?
- Brief highlights of Brazilian Collard Greens recipe:
- Brazilian Collard Greens Ingredients
- Tools you'll need
- How to Make Brazilian Collard Greens
- How to Serve
- How to Store & Re-Heat
- How to Freeze
- Tips for Making The Best Brazilian Collard Greens
- Related Recipes:
- 📋 Recipe
What is Brazilian Collard Greens?
Brazilian Collard Greens are a popular side dish in Brazilian cuisine. They are made by sautéing collard greens with onions and garlic in olive oil and then seasoning them with vinegar, sugar, red pepper flakes, or ground black pepper. The dish is known for its delicious flavor and nutritional value, as collard greens are a good source of vitamins and minerals. Brazilian Collard Greens can be served with various main dishes, including grilled meats, rice, beans, or fish, making it a versatile and healthy addition to any meal.
Brief highlights of Brazilian Collard Greens recipe:
- Taste: Brazilian Collard Greens offer a delightful taste that combines the earthy notes of collard greens with the sweet and savory flavors of sautéed onions and garlic. Adding rice vinegar provides a subtle tanginess, while red pepper flakes or black pepper add a mild to moderate spiciness, depending on your preference.
- Texture: These collard greens have a pleasingly balanced texture. They are tender and wilted from the sautéing process, yet they retain a bit of crunch for a satisfying bite. The thin ribbons of collard greens contribute to their appealing texture, making them a delicious and texturally interesting side dish.
- Method: To prepare Brazilian Collard Greens, start by removing the tough center ribs from the collard greens and slicing the leaves into thin ribbons. Sauté sliced onions in olive oil until transparent, then add garlic, collard greens, and a dash of vinegar, tossing until the greens are dark green and tender yet slightly crisp. This straightforward method ensures a quick and flavorful side dish that's perfect for complementing various main courses.
Brazilian Collard Greens Ingredients
Note: The full ingredients list is provided in the recipe card below.
- Collard greens: the main ingredient, provide the leafy green base for the dish.
- Onion: adds flavor and sweetness to the dish.
- Olive oil: used to cook the onions and garlic, provides flavor and helps to wilt the collard greens.
- Garlic: adds a pungent, savory flavor to the dish.
- Kosher salt: It enhances the flavor of the collard greens and other ingredients.
- Rice vinegar or white vinegar: provides acidity to the dish, helping to balance the flavors and cut through the richness of the collard greens.
- Sugar: It helps to balance the acidity of the vinegar and adds a touch of sweetness to the dish.
- Red pepper flakes or ground black pepper: adds heat and spice to the dish, giving it some extra flavor complexity.
Tools you'll need
How to Make Brazilian Collard Greens
Note: The full instructions are provided in the recipe card below.
Remove the center ribs from the collard greens, then rinse and drain the leaves. Dry entirely and stack 6 to 8 leaves on top of one another and roll them up in a tight cylinder so the stem runs along the length of the roll. Hold it tightly and shave it crosswise into skinny ribbons. In a large skillet over high heat, heat the oil until shimmering; add onion, salt, sugar, and pepper; cook, stirring, until transparent, about 8 to 10 minutes.
Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the collards and vinegar and cook, tossing thoroughly with tongs until they’re all dark green and tender with a bit of crunch, about 5 minutes; taste and adjust the Brazilian Collard Greens with seasoning.
- Collard greens: You could substitute kale, spinach, or Swiss chard for the collard greens in this recipe.
- Onion: If you don't have onion, you could substitute shallots or leeks for a similar flavor.
- Garlic: If you don't have fresh garlic, use garlic powder or minced garlic from a jar (use ½ to 1 teaspoon garlic powder or 1-2 teaspoons minced garlic).
- Kosher salt: You could use table salt or sea salt instead of Kosher salt, but be sure to adjust the amount accordingly, as different salts have different levels of saltiness.
- Rice vinegar: You could use apple cider or white wine vinegar instead of rice vinegar.
- Sugar: You could use honey, agave nectar, or maple syrup instead of sugar for a natural sweetener.
- Red pepper flakes or ground black pepper: You could omit the pepper flakes or use a different type of pepper, such as cayenne pepper or Aleppo pepper, for extra heat.
- Add bacon: Fry up some bacon until crispy, remove from the pan, and crumble. Cook the onions and garlic in the bacon fat, then add the collard greens. When the collard greens are cooked, stir in the crumbled bacon.
- Add sausage: Slice up some smoked sausage or chorizo and cook it in the pan with the onions and garlic. Add the collard greens and cook until tender.
- Add beans: Drain and rinse a can of black beans, then stir them into the collard greens during the last few minutes of cooking. This will add some protein and make the dish more filling.
- Add tomatoes: Dice a few Roma tomatoes into the pan with the collard greens. Cook until the tomatoes are soft and the collard greens are tender.
- Add coconut milk: For a creamier version of the dish, stir in some coconut milk during the last few minutes of cooking. This will add a subtle coconut flavor and make the dish richer.
How to Serve
To serve Brazilian Collard Greens, you can use them as a side dish, topping, or filling. As a classic Brazilian side dish, they go well with many main dishes such as grilled meats, rice, beans, or seafood. As a topping, they can be added to sandwiches or burgers to add extra flavor and nutrition. They can be used as a filling in tacos or burritos, cooked black beans, and shredded cheese for a complete meal.
For a Southern-style twist, they can be served with cornbread. You can also add hot sauce to the dish if you like spicy food, as it will add extra heat and flavor. Lastly, they are deliciously served over a bed of fluffy white rice with some grilled chicken or shrimp for added protein.
How to Store & Re-Heat
To store: Brazilian Collard Greens, transfer them to an airtight container and store them in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
To reheat: Transfer them to a microwave-safe dish and microwave on high for 1-2 minutes, stirring halfway through, or reheat them on the stovetop in a pan over medium heat, stirring frequently. Alternatively, you can freeze the Brazilian Collard Greens for up to 3 months by storing them in a freezer-safe container or plastic bag.
To thaw and reheat from frozen, remove them from the freezer and transfer them to the refrigerator to thaw overnight. Remember that Brazilian Collard Greens are best when freshly cooked, so eating them within a few days of preparation is recommended for optimal flavor and texture.
Brazilian Collard Greens can be made and stored in the refrigerator or freezer until needed. To make them ahead, cook the Brazilian collard greens according to the recipe instructions and allow them to cool down to room temperature. Transfer them to an airtight container and store them in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. It's best to freeze them in portions to thaw and reheat only what you need.
You can use a microwave or stovetop to reheat the Brazilian collard greens. However, remember that freezing and reheating can affect the texture and flavor of the collard greens, so they may be better than freshly cooked ones. Therefore, it's recommended to make them ahead of time only if necessary and to eat them within a few days of preparation for optimal flavor and texture.
How to Freeze
To freeze Brazilian Collard Greens, cook them according to the recipe instructions and allow them to cool down to room temperature. Then, transfer them to a freezer-safe container or plastic bag and remove any excess air to prevent freezer burn. Be sure to label the container or bag with the date and contents. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months. To use, transfer the Brazilian collard greens from the freezer to the refrigerator to thaw overnight.
When ready to reheat, use a microwave or stovetop. Remember that freezing and reheating can affect the texture and flavor of the collard greens, so they may be better than freshly cooked ones. Therefore, it's recommended to freeze them only if necessary and to eat them within 3 months for optimal flavor and texture.
Tips for Making The Best Brazilian Collard Greens
- Use fresh collard greens: Fresh collard greens will have the best texture and flavor. Look for collard greens that are deep green, without any yellowing or wilting.
- Remove the tough stems: Collard greens have tough stems that can be bitter and chewy. Remove the stems before cooking by rolling the leaves tightly and cutting them crosswise into thin strips.
- Cook the collard greens long enough: Collard greens can be tough and chewy if they need to cook longer. Cook them until they're wilted and tender, which should take about 15-20 minutes.
- Don't overcook the collard greens: On the other hand, avoid overcooking the greens, as they can become mushy and lose their texture.
- Season well: Be sure to season the collard greens well with salt, vinegar, and sugar. Adjust the seasonings to your taste, adding more or less depending on your preference.
- Add some spice: Add red pepper flakes or ground black pepper to the collard greens for extra flavor.
- Use a large skillet or wok: Collard greens take up a lot of space when they're raw, so it's essential to use a large skillet or wok to cook them properly.
- Cook in batches: If you have a lot of collard greens, cook them in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan.
- Add some bacon or sausage: Adding some bacon or sausage to the dish can add extra flavor and richness.
- Let the collard greens rest before serving: For the best flavor and texture, rest for a few minutes after cooking before serving.
Can I use other greens instead of collard greens for this recipe?
Of course, you can use other greens like kale, spinach, or Swiss chard instead of collard greens. However, remember that different greens may have different cooking times and textures, so you may need to adjust the cooking time and method accordingly.
Is this dish spicy?
It can be if you add red pepper flakes or ground black pepper. However, you can adjust the heat level to your liking or omit the pepper flakes altogether if you prefer a milder flavor.
Can I freeze Brazilian Collard Greens?
You can freeze Brazilian Collard Greens for up to 3 months. See the "How to Freeze" section for more details.
Can I use a different type of vinegar?
You can use other types of vinegar, like balsamic or red wine vinegar, instead of rice vinegar. However, remember that different types of vinegar may have different flavors so that the final dish may taste slightly different.
How to Make Collard Greens
- Remove the center ribs from the collard greens, then rinse and drain the leaves. Dry entirely and stack 6 to 8 leaves on top of one another and roll them up in a tight cylinder so the stem runs along the length of the roll. Hold it tightly and shave it crosswise into skinny ribbons.
- In a large skillet over high heat, heat the oil until shimmering, add onion, salt, sugar, and pepper; cook, stirring until transparent, about 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the collards, and vinegar and cook, tossing thoroughly with tongs until they’re all dark green, tender with a bit of crunch, about 5 minutes when done, taste and adjust the Brazilian Collard Greens with seasoning.
All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods, and portion sizes per household.