Spicy Coconut Braised Kale

braised kale, kale breakfast

I’m ready to admit that I spent the first 6 years of my working years being jealous of people who had the luxury of grocery shopping during the weekdays.

This is because I mistakenly believed there were less people, shorter lines, and that grocery shopping by myself was going to be a better thing. Well, I can now report to you that:

– Although there are less people, they are the kind of people that move really slow. If you know what I mean. Somehow, I don’t end up moving through the store any faster than I do on a crowded Sunday.

– There are disproportionately less cashiers during the week days, so again we aren’t moving any faster.

I am blessed with a guy who never minded shopping with me, who stuck to my list and didn’t sneak Doritos and donuts into the cart, and who put everything away in exactly the right place without a word of complaint within 5 minutes of arriving home.

I heart him.

I really had a good thing going, battling the Sunday crowds with that hunk of mine. But, there’s still one thing I love about shopping by myself.

No one’s judging me! No eyes rolling and sighing as the cart begins to overflow as I throw in four avocados and the fancy kind of cucucmbers. No one arguing with me about whether we really need that second giant bag of kale. “Do we really eat that much kale?”

No, hunny, you don’t, but I sure do. If he knew what it was like, cooked down ’til it’s soft as butter and soaked with sweet coconut and zesty ginger, he’d surely get it. He might even be begging for his own bag of kale. But for now, I’m keeping it to myself. Eating my kale for breakfast, when I keep meaning to save it for a yummy kale side dish. Eating my kale with eggs, and saving that second bag for kale smoothies. It’s not that I’m selfish, it’s just that… I always end up eating it before he finds it hiding behind the two cartons of almond milk and six kinds of mustard in the fridge. How did it get back there? Hmm? My point is, don’t plan on making this unless you can commit to buying a whole pound of kale for everyone in your household on a weekly basis. Trust me.

kale with eggs

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Spicy Coconut Braised Kale

Yield: 4 servings

Add a poached or fried egg to this zesty, buttery kale dish to make a satisfying savory breakfast. Or, simply serve it up as side to broiled salmon or flank steak. For the vegans, toss it in a handful or chickpeas or use it as a base for other vegetables like broiled eggplant or roasted squash.


1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 cup thinly sliced red onion
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 cups unsweetened coconut milk beverage (from a carton, such as So Delicious brand*), divided
1 lb chopped kale

*Light coconut milk from a can will work, but nutritional information will be different.


In a large dutch oven, heat coconut oil over medium heat. Saute the onion for 5 minutes, until softened. Add garlic, ginger and crushed red pepper. Saute for one more minute, stirrring.

Add 1 cup coconut milk and increase heat to high. Add kale, a few handfuls at a time, stirring with tongs to combine with the onion and coconut milk and help it start to wilt down. When all of the kale has been added, pour in the remaining 1 cup of coconut milk, cover, and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until kale is very tender.

Nutrition Facts:

Nutrition Facts

Servings Per Recipe: 4
Serving Size: 1 serving

Amount Per Serving
Calories 100.4
Total Fat 6.4 g
Saturated Fat 5.5 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.3 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.2 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 34.9 mg
Potassium 348.7 mg
Total Carbohydrate 10.1 g
Dietary Fiber 2.8 g
Sugars 1.5 g
Protein 3.1 g

Cara Lyons, www.carascravings.com

For more food that looks good with eggs, hop on over to The Balanced Platter, where I’m guest-posting about awesome things to do with your farmers’ market bounties!

the balanced platter, quinoa with eggs

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13 Responses to “Spicy Coconut Braised Kale”

  1. 1

    janet @ the taste space — May 7, 2012 @ 9:31 am Reply

    Haha, I love grocery shopping by myself! Although when Rob comes, he can lift all the heavy things! 🙂
    So happy to see you using the coconut milk in the carton and not from a can. I should see if I can locate some here.. still maneuvering the new grocery stores after my move.
    I wonder how this would taste with collards? I have some already…

    • 1.1

      Cara — May 7, 2012 @ 12:14 pm

      I bet collards would be great! They are nice and hearty, like kale.

  2. 2

    Emily — May 7, 2012 @ 12:04 pm Reply

    What type of kale is good for recipes like this? I bought some once, and it didnt come out like I expected… I know there are fancy names, but would you mind giving a good visual description? This sounds so good!

    • 2.1

      Cara — May 7, 2012 @ 12:14 pm

      Hi Emily, I don’t buy any sort of fancy kale. Just what’s available in my supermarket which is the same kind I see in all the supermarkets I go to. It’s very coarse and curly. I like to buy the big 1-lb bags of it, already washed and chopped. That just makes it so much easier! The only time I have seen other varieties of kale is at farmers markets, so if you stick to regular grocery store kale (sorry, I don’t know the name!) it should be fine 🙂

  3. 3

    Joanne — May 7, 2012 @ 2:05 pm Reply

    I’m really glad to know that I’m not the only one who buys kale with reckless abandon. I always have to have a pound of it in the fridge. Always. Cause when the cravings hit (and they do. Daily.) They hit HARD.

    This new way to prepare it sounds delicious! I’m always up for rhubarb and ginger!

  4. 4

    Joanne — May 7, 2012 @ 2:05 pm Reply

    By which i mean…coconut and ginger. 😛

  5. 5

    Colleen @ Culinary Colleen — May 7, 2012 @ 4:39 pm Reply

    I also love keeping tons of kale on hand. I swear it never goes to waste! This sounds like a great recipe.

  6. 6

    Michelle @ Esculent Dreams — May 7, 2012 @ 7:06 pm Reply

    oh wow I never would have thought to combine coconut milk with kale! it looks delicious!

  7. 7

    Jill | A Cook's Nook — May 7, 2012 @ 7:54 pm Reply

    hillarious because it’s so true! I’ll admit, I’m still a little jealous of folks who can shop during the week (I just want my weekends to myself!). Never would have thought of this combo, but now that you’ve posted it- it looks yummy!

  8. 8

    Sarah — May 8, 2012 @ 12:28 am Reply

    That looks fantastic!

    Sarah @ Thinfluenced.com

  9. 9

    Elina (Healthy and Sane) — May 8, 2012 @ 10:24 am Reply

    Ha! The slow moving people and less cashiers is so so true. The aisles are less crowded but it still takes just as long and you have to learn patience at a whole different level.
    I want this kale dish in my life right now! 🙂

  10. 10

    Kate — May 8, 2012 @ 10:45 am Reply

    I miss weekday shopping! For me it became a quick errand during the week. Now it’s a half-day adventure on the weekend.

  11. Pingback: Spicy Coconut Braised Collards with Quinoa « the taste space – steam, bake, boil, shake!

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