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Creamy Collards with Smithfield Ham

Servings: eight to ten.

Southern lore says to eat collards (and black-eyed peas) on New Year’s Day to bring good luck. This creamy rendition makes superstition delicious.


  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 Tbs. finely chopped garlic 
  • 1-1/2 cups chopped Smithfield ham, other country-cured ham, or prosciutto
  • 2 cups homemade or low-salt canned chicken stock
  • 2 large heads (about 3 lb. total) collard greens, washed, stemmed, and cut into 1/4-inch strips
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size based on ten servings
  • Calories (kcal) : 320
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 240
  • Fat (g): 27
  • Saturated Fat (g): 13
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 2
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 11
  • Cholesterol (mg): 80
  • Sodium (mg): 420
  • Carbohydrates (g): 13
  • Fiber (g): 5
  • Protein (g): 8


  • Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic; sauté until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the ham; sauté for about 1 minute. Add the stock and collard greens; cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the collards are tender, about 15 minutes. (The greens will diminish in volume as they cook.) Add the heavy cream and cook until it reduces and thickens slightly, another 10 to 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

For your main course, serve Classic Fried Chicken with basic black-eyed peas on the side.


Rate or Review

Reviews (4 reviews)

  • SausalitoCynic | 01/23/2016

    user-457710 -- You gave a recipe only one star because it offended your politics? Talk about offensitivity! (I've had to give it 5 just to of-set your bigotry.)

  • Twinoaks13931 | 06/13/2014

    I have been making this recipe for Thanksgiving with prosciutto ever since it was published in the Dec '97/Jan '98 issue. Even the most hardened hater of greens has loved it and requested the recipe. I now grow collards in my garden and freeze it in batches specifically to facilitate making this recipe quickly.

  • erinmgardner | 01/15/2014

    Smithfield? Really? A bit disappointed FC is supporting factory farming.

  • oliviagutierrez | 09/13/2010

    This is a good recipe, thank you! I recommend using jamon iberico rather than standard ham to make it even better. I get my Spanish ham from http://buyjamon.com

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