Braised Kale with Bacon and Cider

So we grew kale for the first time this year but we weren’t really sure how to eat it.  I looked online for some ideas the other day and found a recipe for Braised Kale with Bacon and Cider on the Cooking Light website (check out the other recipes as well – the Orecchiette with Kale, Bacon, and Sun-Dried Tomatoes looks delicious).  Since we were having ribs and this recipe was supposed to go well with pork, it sounded perfect.  Here’s a picture of the kale before it was chopped and cooked and a copy of the recipe.

Braised Kale with Bacon and Cider (from the Cooking Light website)


  • 2 bacon slices
  • 1 1/4 cups thinly sliced onion
  • 1 (1-pound) bag chopped kale
  • 1/3 cup apple cider
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups diced Granny Smith apple (about 10 ounces)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  1. Place a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add bacon; cook 5 minutes or until crisp, stirring occasionally. Remove bacon from pan, reserving 1 teaspoon drippings in pan. Crumble bacon, and set aside.
  2. Increase heat to medium-high. Add onion to pan; cook 5 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Add kale, and cook 5 minutes or until wilted, stirring frequently. Add cider and vinegar; cover and cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add apple, salt, and pepper; cook 5 minutes or until apple is tender, stirring occasionally. Sprinkle with bacon.

As usual, I never follow a recipe exactly, especially since I am usually missing at least one ingredient. I didn’t use a pound of kale, maybe half that (there’s only two of us afterall!).  I used about a quarter of a pack of bacon instead of two slices (because in my opinion you can’t really go wrong with bacon), 3/4 of a granny smith apple and a teaspoon of white vinegar because we didn’t have any apple cider vinegar.  For the cider, we used Strongbow, but it might have turned out better with a sweeter cider. Here is a picture of the final product and our meal (the beans are also from the garden).

So overall, both Brian and I thought it was quite good and it did go very well with the ribs.  It turns out that kale tastes kinda like broccoli, and is less bitter than swiss chard so it is probably easier to cook with.   Next up, I am going to try adding it to a creamy pasta sauce. 🙂


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