Collards belong to the Brassica, making it an excellent choice in the cooler months. Although it was once called colwort, or “cabbage plant” collards do not have compact leaves that form a head like cabbage does. Collard’s blue green leaves are broad and smooth in texture. Collard’s leaves lack frilled edges like kale and mustard greens. Collard greens are commonly seen in traditional southern and Creole-style cooking, but are also enjoyed in Portugal and Brazilian stews and soups, where they are paired with fish and pork.
Look for collard greens that have firm leaves. Smaller leaves will be tender and have a milder flavor. Collard greens should be washed very well since the leaves and stems tend to collect sand and soil. Before washing, separate the leaves. Place the collard greens in a large bowl of tepid water and swirl them around with your hands. Remove the leaves from the water, empty the bowl, refill with clean water, and repeat this process until no dirt remains in the water. Store unwashed collard greens in a damp paper towel in a plastic bag. They should be placed in the refrigerator crisper where they will keep for up to five days. Cook collard greens by sautéing, braising or steaming and try them with a side of black eyed peas and a bowl of Cajun rice.

In Season

January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December

Recipes with Collards

Sweet Potato Stew with Greens

Nalini Mehta, Route to India

Braised Greens with Toast

Sarah Henkin, CUESA Market Chef.

Citrus Collards with Raisins

Anna Lappé and Bryant Terry’s Grub: Ideas for an Urban Organic Kitchen.

Collard Greens with Parsley-Caper Sauce

Charles Vollmar, Chef and Owner, Epicurian Exchange.

Articles about Collards

July 25, 2014

The Great Tomato Debate

Confused by terms like heirloom, open-pollinated, hybrid, and GMO? We’ll help you sort them out.

July 18, 2014

Meet Marcy

CUESA is excited to welcome our new executive director, Marcy Coburn! Find out what inspires her work.

July 11, 2014

Farm Tripping

Summer is prime time for agritourism. Here’s our list of local U-picks, tours, and other farm fun.

July 09, 2014

A Fond Farewell from Critical Edge Knife Sharpening

Bob Kattenburg retires after 19 years as the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market’s knife sharpener.

July 04, 2014

On the Farm at Marin Roots

Take a behind-the-scenes look at organic veggie growing with the young farmers at Marin Roots Farm.


CUESA (Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture) is dedicated to cultivating a sustainable food system through the operation of the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market and its educational programs. Learn More »