Award-Winning Recipe: Sweet Sally’s Collard Greens

Braddock Youth Project’s Collard Greens Cook-off is on Nov. 15. Sweet Sally’s Collard Greens took the prize last year; bring a fork and cast your ballot in this year’s cook-off!


We love kale. That is the truth. It is the “flagship” green of the food movement, waved with gusto at all the farm-to-table marches. But what green has more fiber, protein and magnesium than kale?

It’s less-glamorous cousin, the collard green. From the same cruciferous family as kale, collard greens are less flashy, but they will hold their own with kale mano a mano. In fact, I love how its more substantial texture adds more heft to vegetable dishes.

For those who don’t like collards, rid yourself of the “boiled til its gray” nightmare that you might have had to endure growing up. The easiest way to do that is to head on to Braddock and taste 15 or more ways collard greens can be done right at the Braddock Youth Project’s Annual Collard Greens Cook-off on Nov. 15!


This down-home food event won’t have professional chefs battling it out for best honors. Instead, you have the most amazing home cooks showing off their best collard greens. Such a variety – from vegan greens (like last year’s winner!) to super spicy ones to versions stewed with ham hocks. It’s a hard one to judge for sure, so it’s great that the winner is chosen by popular vote. No one person has to bear the burden of choosing!

I can’t wait for this year’s event. I always make sure I come hungry — because a $5 ticket (I know — that is the BEST bargain in town) will get you unlimited collards and sides such as cornbread and other fixins.

Last year’s event was fantastic, and below I feature the winning recipe from Rachelle Mackson: Sweet Sally’s Collard Greens. The collard greens were so good, Rachelle and I visited Chris Fennimore at WQED to cook the recipe on air.


Rachelle is an amazing cook, and she shares with us a couple of her secrets to this winning recipe. First, she uses a bit of meat tenderizer to help soften the greens. Meat tenderizers are simply enzyme powders that help to break down protein.

Second, she uses an unexpected spice blend: Old Bay Seasoning. Zing!

This recipe is so good — it’s definitely worthy of your Thanksgiving table.

Sweet Sally’s Collard Greens

Adapted from a recipe by Rachelle Mackson
Serves 6-8


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large bunch collard greens, chiffonade
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • ½ cup sliced green peppers
  • ½ cup sliced yellow, red or orange peppers
  • 1 cup sliced cremini mushrooms
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon meat tenderizer, unseasoned
  • 1 cup broth
  • salt and pepper


  • In a wide pan, heat olive oil over medium heat.
  • Add the onions and sauté until soft.
  • Add the mushrooms and peppers and sauté for about 1 minute.
  • Add the collards and the seasonings.
  • Sauté until collards start to wilt.
  • Add broth and cover. Simmer until collards are tender and most of the broth has been absorbed.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Serve


Categories: Brazen Kitchen