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Collard Greens with Bacon, lots of bacon, are a tasty summertime Southern side that pairs well with barbecued meats, baked beans, potato salad, Black Eyed Peas and coleslaw.


Bacon makes everything better.  I thought about writing that, and nothing else.  What more do you need?  Alright, alright.  I’ll talk about these collard greens a bit more.  Why are they good?  The bacon, of course.  I mean, look at this photo below.  Sauteed onions and bacon.  That is the base for this recipe.  Need I say more?


My recipe calls for a lot of bacon.  If you can’t handle it, feel free to cut back a wee bit.  I love the abundance of bacon with these collard greens, though.  If you’ve never had collard greens, they are very bitter and require a lot of cooking in liquid (and bacon) to make them good.  A touch of red pepper, brown sugar and apple cider vinegar round out this dish.  Gimme a plate of pulled pork or barbecue ribs, gritty corn bread, a big pile of collard greens with bacon… and you’ll have yourself one happy foodie.

Southern Collard Greens

Prep10 minutes
Cook50 minutes
Total1 hour
Servings 8 servings
Collard Greens with Bacon, lots of bacon, are a tasty summertime Southern side that pairs well with barbecued meats, baked beans, potato salad, and coleslaw.



  • 8 ounces bacon uncooked, diced into small pieces
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 pound collard greens washed and cut into 2-inch pieces, stem removed (about 4-6 cups packed)
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar


  • Cook bacon: In a Dutch oven or large heavy-bottomed pot, cook the bacon pieces over medium-high heat until all fat is rendered. As the bacon starts to cook and the fat starts to render and bubble, you may need to reduce the heat to prevent it from burning. Once the bacon is fully cooked and crispy, transfer the cooked bacon pieces to a paper towel-lined plate. Remove almost all of the fat from the pan, but leave about a tablespoon in the pan to cook the onions.
  • Cook onions: Sauté the onions in the remaining tablespoon of bacon grease over medium-high heat until they are tender and slightly brown, about 5 minutes.
  • Add garlic: Add the garlic to the onions, then sauté another couple of minutes.
  • Add collard greens: Add the prepared greens and sauté just until they start to wilt.
  • Simmer: Pour in chicken broth and add red pepper flakes, brown sugar, and apple cider vinegar. Turn heat to low, cover, and simmer for 45 minutes. About five minutes before they finish cooking, stir in most of the cooked bacon, reserving some to sprinkle on top when serving.


Calories: 287kcal, Carbohydrates: 8g, Protein: 10g, Fat: 24g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 40mg, Sodium: 509mg, Potassium: 265mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 943IU, Vitamin C: 8mg, Calcium: 52mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Did you make this? Leave me a comment below

Hi! I’m Krissy.

I love to create the BEST versions of your favorite recipes. If you love to cook, love to eat, or just have a deep appreciation for good food, you’re in the right place! Stick around… I have hundreds of recipes for you to make.

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  1. 5 stars
    My teenage son who won’t eat vegetables said “this slaps” whatever that means. He had seconds. And we all loved it. Thank you.

  2. 5 stars
    Made these today for the first time. Wow! I did a few things different. I let them simmer with all the cooked bacon instead of saving some for topping and used a full tablespoon of apple cider vinegar. Will make again soon!

  3. 5 stars
    You can’t go wrong with this recipe. My variation is that I use lacinto kale instead of collard greens, add garlic to my onions and bacon, always use a ham hock for flavoring, and use 5 cups of water instead of chicken stock……and I add 3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar….finally, I cook and simmer my greens for at least 5 hours on the stove.