“Instant Pot” Sweet and Savory Collards

I absolutely love collard greens! I can eat them for breakfast, lunch, and dinner! The fact that these collards are full of flavor without the addition of salt, oil, or sugar makes them that much more worth indulging in at any time!

Born and raised in the south, Collard greens frequented our plates not just during the holidays but all throughout the year especially on Sundays!  However, they were always prepared with some type of smoked meat and lots of salt and sugar.

Now that our family lives a Whole Food Plant-Based lifestyle,  making healthier but flavorful collards has not been a challenge.  We have two recipes for collards, Smoky Coconut Collards and Table Tasty Collards which are both amazingly delicious!  However, these collards are second to none!  Bursting with flavor, free of added oil, salt, and sugar! 

How is it possible to prepare collards without added oil, salt, or sugar with a little smokey flare?  Well, drum roll please.  The secret ingredients are the Smoked Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Lime Juice, and the “reduced” Balsamic Vinegar.  Simply amazing additions that makes these collards absolutely divinely delicious!

Please note, be sure to use “reduced” (4%) acidity Balsamic Vinegar in this recipe because of the intense sweetness.  I would also highly recommend using the “smoked” Sun-Dried Tomatoes for a much more intense savory flavor.  

Cooking collards the traditional way on the stove top is labor intense.  Thank heaven for the Instant Pot!  It has become my favorite appliance!  Now I can put collards on and walk away from the stove.  The Instant Pot does all of the cooking and checking for me!  Now that’s care-free cooking!

Simple and quick to make, these Sweet and Savory Collards are to live for!  They grace our table at least 2-3 times a week!  Southern deliciousness at it’s best!

Watch “How To” Video:

"Instant Pot" Sweet and Savory Collards

Sweet and Savory Collards, full of flavor without added salt, oil, or sugar making them that much more indulgently delicious!
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Servings 4 servings


  • 1 large bunch Collard Greens, destemmed, chopped, and rinsed (about 2 1/2 pounds)
  • 3 oz Smoked Sun-Dried Tomatoes
  • 8 cloves garlic (about 1 oz)
  • 1 large Yellow Onion, Chopped
  • 1/2 cup White Button Mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp Garlic Powder, unsalted
  • 1 Tbsp Onion Powder, unsalted
  • 1/2 tsp Chipotle Chile Pepper
  • 1/3 cup Balsamic Vinegar, reduced (4% acidity)
  • 2/3 cup Veggie Stock, unsalted (used Kitchen Basics)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice


  • Rinse the collards in running water or allow them to soak overnight in the kitchen sink filled with water. Using a serrated knife destem each collard and cut into bite-sized pieces or strips. Set aside in a large bowl.
  • Using a food processor chop the Garlic and the Smoked Sun-Dried Tomatoes and transfer to the Instant Pot. Chop the Onions and Mushrooms and add them to the Instant Pot. Add a splash of water to the Instant Pot and sautee the veggies using the "Sautee" mode for about 8 minutes, stirring frequently. Add water as needed to keep veggies from sticking. After the veggies are finished sauteeing turn off the Instant Pot.
  • Add the chopped collards to the Instant Pot. In a separate bowl add the Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Chipotle Chile Pepper, the Reduced Balsamic Vinegar, and the Unsalted Veggie Stock. Stir until mixed well. Pour over the Collards in the IP. Engage the lid and ensure the steamer valve is closed.
  • Cook the collards on the "Manual" mode for 25 minutes with at least a 20-25 minute "Natural Release". Open the IP and give the Collards a thorough mix thru. Add the Lime Juice and give another good stir thru. Serve and enjoy!
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

18 Comments Add yours

  1. Maria T Krehel says:

    What reduced balsamic vinegar are you using? I am having a hard time finding one without sugar or sugar additive.

    1. Faith Scott says:

      Hello Maria! The brand I used was purchased from my local Walmart. I was in my local Kroger the other day and saw that they too carried a reduced balsamic vinegar. Try checking out your nearest Whole Foods Store or Trader Joes.

    2. Faith Scott says:

      Hello Maria. The brand of Balsamic glaze that I use is from my local Walmart. The name brand is De Nigris. I have a picture of the brand in the blog. Hope this helps. Have a great day!

  2. Linda W says:

    I always use my stove top, but will now use my Instant Pot. Thanks for your post. I also add chopped carrots & kale, and used to add vegan Soyrizo to replace bacon. But it is processed so I quit using that and never miss it . Now I add beans and oat groats or brown rice as side dishes, and occasionally, top with cheezy sauce for variety. Serve with 1/2 apple and 1/2 orange. Yum.

    1. Faith Scott says:

      Hello Linda! Sounds hearty and yummy! You gotta love the versatility and variety of plant-based creations. The sky is the limit!

  3. Sally says:

    Oh my goodness! SOOOO Delicious. I ended up making with kale instead of collards because that is what I had. I think I could eat the whole pot by myself!! YUM! I will definitely make again with collards and I imagine this recipe will be in my regular weekly rotation!! Thank you so much!

    1. Faith Scott says:

      Hello Sally! Oh me oh my, Kale in this recipe! I know they were lip-smacking good! I hope you enjoy the collards as much as we do! Have a super fantastic Plant-Powered day because you simply can!

  4. Deb says:

    I cook my collards similarly in my IP but only cook mine for 6 minutes and it’s completely cooked and tender.

    1. Faith Scott says:

      Hello Deb! Great! It seems as if though a 25 minute cook time may be a long time, but I tried all different cooking times with this particular recipe and the 25-minute cook time with a natural release of 20-25 minutes was the perfect tenderness for our family. It could be because of the minimal amount of water used to the amount of collards (2lbs) being cooked that could possibly affect the different cooking times. Thanks again for stopping by our site. Have a great day because you simply can!

  5. Julie says:

    New to your site. This looks so good! Can’t wait to make these.

    1. Faith Scott says:

      Hello Julie! Thank you for your kind support! We love these collards! Hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

  6. Maxine James says:

    I made these and loved them. I knew I would as I e tried the Brussels slaw and the fudge sickles and loved both of them. They tasted even better after being in the fridge a few days. Might have se the kale I have and make them again

    1. Faith Scott says:

      Hey Maxine! So glad to hear that you enjoyed the Collards, Brussels Sprout Slaw, and Fudgesicles! You just gotta love what a plant-powered kitchen can produce!

  7. Vicky says:

    I just made this recipe today for lunch! So delicious! Thank you for creating ways to enjoy collard greens without animal products, salt, oil and sugar! πŸ™‚

    1. Faith Scott says:

      Hey Vicky! So glad to hear that you enjoyed the Sweet and Savory Collards! There is life in the kitchen without animal products, salt, oil, and sugar! πŸ™‚

  8. Lisa Joy says:

    Oh my! Can’t wait to try these! Can I use regular sun-dried tomatoes in this dish?

    1. Faith Scott says:

      Hello Lisa! Sure you can. πŸ™‚

  9. Jeannie says:

    Okay, I am making a shopping list!!!

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