Collard greens recipes

Of all collard greens recipes, both vegan and vegetarian, I like my own inventions the most. If you like cabbage rolls but hate that long process of making them as much as I do, you will find my collard greens rolls a fantastic quick alternative.

cooking collard greens rolls

Collard greens are a tough sell. Some people dislike the smell of them, others get turned off by their texture and look. Let’s be honest, the look of the typically prepared vegan collard greens, sliced and stewed with vegetables, herbs and/or mushrooms, doesn’t inspire much.

People eat them for their unique health benefits - broad antioxidant protection, cleansing properties, cardiovascular and cancer prevention properties, and many more. A cup of cooked collard greens provides 57.6% of the daily value (DV) for vitamin C. 8.3% of the DV for vitamin E, and an amazing 118.9% of the DV for vitamin A. Add to this 20% of DV of Calcium, and whopping 880% of DV of Vitamin K, load of fiber and protein, and you may feel inclined to buy a bunch of collard greens next time you are in the supermarket.

Collard greens recipes

Collard greens rolls in pasta sauce with quinoa and rapini filling

I created this delicious recipe while experimenting with vegan collard greens recipes supplied by google. I found no analog of it on internet. It beats dolmas and cabbage rolls in the cooking time and ease of cooking since no baking is required. Truly delicious way to cook your collard greens, suitable for the holiday dinner table, open to the variation of ingredients.

Alter this recipe to suit your palate and content of your pantry and fridge! Main ingredients of this balanced meal are:

  • Source of the complex carbs – quinoa , substitute with brown rice, rice, amaranth, millet
  • Greens – rapini , substitute with broccoli, swiss chard, collard greens, spinach or dandelions
  • Fermented/marinated vegetables – cabbage kraut, substitute with marinated red peppers, artichokes, olives or pickled asparagus
  • More protein – mushrooms (can do without)
  • vegetables - onion and cabbage
  • Herbs – cilantro, substitute with parsley, oregano, dill or mix
  • Vegetarian option - add feta cheese to the filling.

Preparation steps are listed in the order that allows to achive the quickest preparation time.


Makes about 20 rolls or 5 full servings

  • 1 large bunch collard greens (about 1 pound), rinsed and drained
  • 1/2- 1 bunch rapini, washed
  • 1/2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 finely chopped onion
  • 1 cup mushrooms (king oyster, porchini, white button), cut into cubes
  • 3 cups cooked quinoa (substitute with rice, brown rice or amaranth)
  • 1 cup vegetable broth or one vegetable bouillon cube and water
  • Salt, if necessary, and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 cup of cabbage kraut (substitute with 1/2 cup of marinated artichoke hearts, red peppers or asparagus)
  • garlic, salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup cilantro or parsley
  • 1,5 cups pasta sause of your choice


Don't get turned off by the length of cooking instructions! In reality, while quinoa boils, you prepare collard greens and rapini. Once you have removed quinoa from the stove, start cooking vegetables. Cut the herbs while vegetables are cooking and quinoa is cooling. Mix with quinoa and veggies. Roll the rolls and put them back on the stove top to simmer in the pasta sauce. Voila!
Detailed instructions:

  1. Cook quinoa in vegetable broth according to the directions. Aim to undercook ! It will be fully cooked inside the rolls.
  2. Bring a large stockpot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, remove any discolored leaves from the rapini and discard.
  3. Hold collard greens by the stems and dip them, bunch by bunch, into the salted boling water. Blanch every portion for 1-2 minutes. Once the color is changes to bright green, vitamin C is brought to the surface. Pull out, and immediately rinse under cold running water. Drain. tenderizing collard greens
  4. Cut off stems and beat the hard part of the stem on the leaf with meat tenderizer (mallet) until flat.
  5. Hold rapini by the stems and dip them, into the salted boling water. Blanch every portion for 3-4 minutes. Pull out and drain. Alternatively, cut rapini in 1/2 inch pieces, blanch and drain. I find blaching first and cutting second much easier.
  6. Cut off about 1/2 inch of the tough bottom stems and discard. Chop the remaining broccoli into 1-1/2 or 2-inch pieces. Add the rapini to the boiling water and boil for 3 minutes. Drain in a colander and immediately rinse under cold running water, Drain well, pressing on rapini with the back of a spoon to remove excess water. slicing veggies for stuffing of collard greens
  7. Slice vegetables and mushrooms. In a large nonstick skillet with a lid, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion,carrots and mushrooms and cook, stirring, until lightly colored, about 3 minutes.
  8. Reduce the heat to medium-low and add rapini; toss well to combine. Cover and cook until the rapini is tender, 3 minutes.
  9. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper to taste. Mix for the collard greens
  10. Add garlic and cilantro, mix in cabbage kraut or marinated vegetables and add quinoa, tossing well to combine.

    rolling the collard greens
  11. To roll the collard greens roll: place a collard greens leaf in front of you, rib side facing you. Place 2 tbsp. of the filling in the centre. Roll up the collard greens leaf, tucking in ends.

    rolling the collard greens

    placing rolls in the pan
  12. Cooking. Spray deep skillet or dutch oven with olive oil, place collard green rolls close to each other, pour pasta sauce on top and add 1/2 cup of water or vegetable broth.

    adding pasta sauce
  13. Cover with the lid and heat over the high heat. Once they start to boil, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Serve cold or hot with the sauce the rolls cooked in.


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