Black-Eyed Peas with Collard Greens is the perfect side dish to serve as part of a meal inspired by “soul food” traditions. The dish is traditionally served on New Year’s Day. We cooked up this recipe as part of a meal that we served with a bottle of Pinot Noir from Maison Noir, as part of the Wine Pairing Weekend exploration of BIPOC owned wineries and BIPOC winemakers.
I originally came up with this recipe in 2021 as part of a Black History Month event focused on Black owned wineries. My focus was on André Hueston Mack’s Maison Noir Winery, which we cover more below.
I often like to learn about a type of cuisine that goes along with the wine we are featuring, and come up with a recipe inspired by some traditional recipes…but adding my own twists to it. That’s the way we went with our black-eyed peas with collard greens recipe.
I had some black-eyed peas on hand from New Year’s Day, when I didn’t get around to making Hoppin’ John as I often do. I talk more about the tradition of eating this dish to start the year along with our Healthier Hoppin’ John recipe.
Overview of black-eyed peas and collards recipe
Here is a quick overview of the steps here, head down to the recipe card for the details!
I put the traditional black-eyed peas together with collard greens as an anchor to our plate for today’s pairing. We start by cooking up some bacon in the skillet to create a base of flavor for cooking the greens. The bacon gets set aside on a paper towel lined plate after cooking; we add it back at the end to finish the dish.
The classic method for this dish would involve cooking the black-eyed peas and collards with a ham hock. We are more likely to have bacon on hand here! But you could try the ham hock if you have it available.
After removing the bacon, we cook the onion on medium heat for a bit, then add the bell pepper.
Next, the collard greens get gradually added to the skillet.
After the collard greens have cooked down, it’s time to add the black-eyed peas along with the remaining ingredients, to finish the dish.
Black-eyed peas recipe background and resources
Black-eyed peas have their origins in Africa.
According to this article, they were a staple in West African cuisine long before being brought by Africans to the West Indies and the American South.
Collard greens also have a prominent place in Soul Food and Southern cooking. Typically cooked for a long time in a big pot with pork fat, I recall enjoying this flavorful preparation a lot during the time I lived in Kentucky. This recipe from Grandbaby Cakes looks like a good example of the classic greens.
As I was getting ready for this post, I came across the new book from Chef Marcus Samuelsson, The Rise: Black Cooks and the Soul of American Food. While my copy came too late to make something for today’s event from it, I have enjoyed starting to read it to learn more about the deep and rich history of how Black cooking underpins all food in America. I highly recommend this resource!
Black-eyed Peas and Collard Greens FAQ
There is a tradition of eating black-eyed peas for New Year’s Day to bring good luck. Learn more about the tradition to eating this dish to start the year along with our Healthier Hoppin’ John recipe.
This collard greens and black-eyed peas recipe is packed with nutrition. The dark leafy collard greens are loaded with vitamins, and black-eyed peas are a good source of fiber and plant based protein. We use a modest amount of bacon here to add flavor. You could use turkey bacon to reduce the amount of saturated fat.
Well, we definitely think black-eyed go well with collard greens! Cooking up some onions and bell pepper is a good way to start a dish with black-eyed peas. Check out our collection of Black-eyed Peas Recipes for more ideas, including what to serve with them.
Store leftover black-eyed peas and collard greens in an air tight container. It will keep for several days in the refrigerator. Reheat to serve as a side dish, or you could also use the dish in a wrap along with some chicken or other protein.
What to serve with this recipe
I served our black-eyed peas dish with our BBQ flavored pulled pork recipe and Mashed Sweet Potatoes with Cumin Sage Butter.
Serving BBQ flavored meat as part of this meal was a nod to the rich contribution of Blacks to American barbecue. As this article notes, “the uniquely hemispheric cooking form was perfected in the hands of Black pit masters in the American South.”
And a bonus — making pulled pork set up another pairing with a Maison Noir wine. We made a batch of Leftover Pulled Pork Risotto and paired with the Maison Noir Oregogne Chardonnay.
As the name implies, this is a Burgundy style Chard, was my favorite of the wines I sampled. Delicious pairing!
OK, my spicy savory sweet potato preparation clearly veers from tradition, but lets keep in mind I was looking to put together a plate that would go with a nice bottle of Pinot Noir too!
More recipe ideas
Here are some more recipes from my fellow bloggers that could go well with our black-eyed peas and collard greens:
- Southern Buttermilk Fried Chicken from On Ty’s Plate
- Pernil – Roast Pork Shoulder from Sense & Sensibility
- Southern Cornbread from Grandbaby Cakes
- Milk Brined Southern Fried Pork Chops via on Ty’s Plate
- Brown Butter Black Bottomed Sweet Potato Pie via Chenée Today (for dessert!)
In addition, Elizabeth from Bowl of Delicious has put together a searchable database of Black food bloggers that you can check out for more recipe inspiration.
This Cook Local Eat Local podcast episode with Marwin Brown is also a great resource. He talks about modern soul food and shares some great recipe ideas.
We opened a bottle of the Maison Noir OPP ($25, 13.9% ABV) to go with our meal. The wine’s name and label give you a feel for the playful approach André brings to wine. The OPP in this case stands for “Other People’s Pinot”– and I had to play the song by the same name while opening the bottle, bringing back memories of hearing it at college parties.
The OPP has a jammy nose, cherry fruit and notes of licorice on the palate. Light bodied, with a pleasant mouthfeel. The wine definitely delivers on its goal to offer an affordable Oregon Pinot to the marketplace.
As you might guess from the description, the food-friendly OPP paired nicely with the flavors on our plate. The fruit complemented the smoky flavors of the bacon and BBQ flavors, as well as the spices in our sweet potatoes. A winning pairing!
About Maison Noir Winery
While researching Black owned wineries, Maison Noir quickly caught my eye. Founded by André Hueston Mack, a top sommelier, and located in Oregon’s Willamette Valley…i.e. the owner is focused on food & wine pairings, and the winery is in one of my favorite regions! I was quickly on their website ordering several bottles to sample.
As I learned more about André, shown above in courtesy photo taken by Sash Photography, I became intrigued with his background, and wanted to get a chance to chat with him. And that we did! As a result, I did a full article on André and Maison Noir Wines. You can also view our full conversation here:
You can also get a feel for the philosophy behind the Maison Noir wine brand in this short clip with André.Print
Black-Eyed Peas with Collard Greens
Black-eyed peas cooked with collard greens and topped with bacon for a flavorful side dish.
- Prep Time: 5 mins
- Cook Time: 35 mins
- Total Time: 40 mins
- Yield: 5 servings 1x
- Category: side dish
- Method: stove top
- Cuisine: soul food
- 2 strips of bacon
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- ½ of a red bell pepper, chopped
- 4 cups of collard green leaves, coarsely chopped
- ½ cup of low sodium chicken broth
- 14 ½ oz can black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
- 1 teaspoon honey
- pinch of salt
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- Cook the bacon: coat a large skillet with oil spray. Heat the skillet on medium heat. Add the bacon and cook until crisp, turning occasionally. When the bacon is cooked, place it on a plate with a paper towel to absorb the grease. When the bacon has cooled, crumble it into bite sized bits.
- Sauté onions: drain excess grease from the skillet but leave a bit for flavor. Add the olive oil, heat on medium low. Add the onions, and sauté for about 5 minutes until they begin to soften. Add the bell pepper, and sauté for a few more minutes.
- Add collard greens to the skillet, along with the broth, honey and a pinch of salt. Stir to combine with the onions, and cover the skillet. Simmer on medium low heat for 10 minutes.
- Add the black-eyed peas to the skillet, along with the thyme, paprika and half of the crumbled bacon. Stir to combine with the greens. Cover, and simmer for another 10 minutes or so, until the greens are tender.
- Plate the black-eyed peas and collard greens. Top each serving with some of the remaining bacon bits. Enjoy!
- Prepping collard greens: Cut the leaves off from the thick stems. The stems can be chopped fine and added to this dish, or saved for adding to a soup, stew, or stock.
- Turkey bacon is an option for lower fat and calorie content, although you do lose a bit of flavor.
- Classic Southern cooking or “soul food” would likely prepare a dish like this with a ham hock instead of bacon.
Keywords: black-eyed peas, collard greens, black-eyed peas with greens, Southern food
More BIPOC Wine Articles from #winePW
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- The Many Talents of John Legend on A Day in the Life on the Farm
- Family and Wine Go Together for These Black-owned Businesses from My Full Wine Glass
- Black-Eyed Peas with Collard Greens and Maison Noir OPP by Cooking Chat
- Where’s Linus Sauvignon Blanc with a Shaved Vegetable Salad, Crostini, and Scallops on Cauliflower Rice Risotto on Crushed Grape Chronicles
- A Taste of Theopolis Vineyards from ENOFYLZ
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- Meet Cheramie Law: Black, Female, and Founder of Texas’ Cheramie Wine from The Corkscrew Concierge
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- Camins 2 Dreams: When a Chumash Winemaker Meets a Spanish One And Sparks Fly from Gwendolyn Alley, Wine Predator
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Camilla M Mann
Amazing, inspiring article, David. Now you have me looking up books…and songs (I don’t know that one!)…and searching for wine online at 5 in the morning. I have some black-eyed peas in my cabinet. I’ll have to try this soon. Thanks.
The song is definitely fun, high energy for dancing or cooking! But parental discretion on the lyrics…actually more the meaning of them rather than outright expletives.
Love that you centered the entire meal around Black History Month. I read Yes, Chef by Marcus Samuellson…I left that book not caring for him to much.
Hmm, interesting you didn’t like his other book, Wendy. I hadn’t heard of him until I heard him on a podcast talking about The Rise.
What a great pairing! I love that you’re highlighting foods of comfort while highlighting Black-owned wineries.
It was fun to learn more about some new wineries and food traditions!
What a great piece! I have black-eyed peas in the pantry. I might just need to try this recipe.
Can I just say how much I love his Chardonnay label “Oregogne” Just brilliant!
I love your interview snippet with Mr. Mack and look forward to watching the longer interview.
Thanks Robin! We had fun with this one.
He’s a favorite of mine and I enjoyed your post so much. The dish is one my grandmother enjoyed every year of her life.
Thanks Terri, that’s great! Southern roots I’m guessing?
Black-eyed peas are such a favorite at our house. And I can’t love it enough that you listened to the song OPP while drinking the OPP wine. Love it!
Getting that OPP going brought back some good memories of college days! Alas, it wasn’t Pinot in my glass then…
Linda Whipple, CSW
I listened to Chef by Marcus Samuellson on a long car ride some years back and enjoyed it very much, and I loved Americanah. You’ve weaved together so many threads here, David – an educational and fun read. Looking forward to your interview with André Mack.
Thanks Linda! I’m curious about Chef now too.
I truly love this post – I love how you’ve woven aspects of wine,food, history, and culture together and given thoughts on small tangible steps we can all take. You’ve given me so many things to flag down in wine and books. We also often do collards and black-eyed peas at New Year’s as well, so that add an extra tummy and heart-warming element for me,
MARTIN D REDMOND
It’s hard to go wrong with Pork and Pinot David. I’m loving everything on your plate and in your glass. I’m vaguely familiar with Andre Mack, but look forward to learning more!
David- I loved your post and have black-eyed peas in my cabinet and turkey bacon in my fridge. I am very excited to try out your recipe which I just printed. So much going on in your piece – wine, food, history, social justice, books, chefs, winemakers and music. Now I have OPP in my head too. I literally just had to listen to it on YouTube! I am so impressed with how many links and recipes you put in this post as well. A master of the genre. My compliments David. And a Social Justice advocate to boot. Good for you. 5 years in Kentucky…WOW.
Thanks Susannah, I appreciate the feedback! Hope you like the recipe.
I am always looking for new side dishes to try and this look delicious. I can’t wait to try it.
I definitely learned some new things reading this article. Thank you for taking the time to educate. The black eyed peas and collard greens sounds amazing.
Thanks for stopping by, Julie!
Love this healthy side dish especially since it’s healthy and so easy to make! Thanks for the recipe!
These look great, love the sound of this!
The black-eyed peas with collard greens turned out really tasty and went great with slow cooker pork.
So glad to hear!