Collard Greens With Smoked Turkey Leg

October  4, 2021
0 Ratings
Photo by Julia Gartland
  • Prep time 15 minutes
  • Cook time 1 hour
  • Serves 4 to 6
Author Notes

Collards are a very healthy green, but a bit on the bitter side. They are a great addition to fried chicken or any other protein for that matter. You can leave out the meat and make these vegan, but I would suggest you add a bit of liquid smoke and use a good-quality veggie stock. I am lucky enough to live within walking distance from Cason’s fine meats. Rain or shine, they are smoking all kinds of critters! Walking down Denver, you can smell it in the air, and their smoked turkey products could rival some smoked pork products I have had. —Alexandra V. Jones

Test Kitchen Notes

Even if it's not Thanksgiving or you're not serving a crowd for the holidays, sometimes you need to get creative with your leftovers—in this case, a smoked turkey leg. Sure, you could eat it on its own, but this recipe proves you can mix things up a bit with the addition of some bitter greens. It's all made in one pot, so cleanup is a breeze, and a lot of the work is hands-off, as the turkey leg has to simmer for about 30 minutes. After adding the collards and some seasonings, give it another 20 minutes, then shred the meat and mix it all together. That's all there is to it! By incorporating spice, like red pepper flakes and hot sauce, as well as apple cider vinegar and garlic, you'll take a regular smoked turkey leg and put it over the top flavor-wise.

If you don't like or want to use collards, try with any other hearty greens, such as mustard, kale, or spinach if you're in a pinch. Be sure to taste as you go and adjust the spice levels accordingly. You could also use any kind of stock you'd like, especially if you have leftover turkey stock from Thanksgiving, or if you have some good-quality veggie stock tucked away in the freezer. Try with different kinds of smoked meats too. You'll love the versatility and ease of this recipe, and it's a great way to use up a bunch of greens in a very creative, delicious way. —The Editors

What You'll Need
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Collard Greens With Smoked Turkey Leg
  • 1 smoked turkey leg
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 2 bunches collard greens, rinsed well, stems removed, leaves chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce, such as Frank's
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  1. In a large pot over medium-high heat, bring the turkey leg and stock to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes.
  2. Add the collard greens, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Increase the heat to medium and continue to cook for 20 minutes more, until the greens are wilted.
  3. Remove the turkey leg and shred the meat; discard the bones and skin. Return the meat to the pot and cook, stirring, to warm through. Drizzle with the vinegar and hot sauce; season with salt and pepper.

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Chef de cuisine @Shelburne hotel Seaview, WA

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