Thursday, February 15, 2018

Southern Potlikker Soup


Potlikker is the delicious, highly concentrated, vitamin-filled soup that develops as sturdy, leafy greens simmer in well-seasoned cooking liquid. Or, as one connoisseur put it, “Potlikker is the residue that remains from the commingling, heating, and evaporation - anyway, it is in the bottom of the pot.” (source:

This Potlikker Soup is nutritious and delicious, as this one time Yankee gal was soon to discover. I was very fortunate to be able to use some local heirloom collards from the Bradford family, which are naturally sweet and tender, so much so I have used them raw in my Bradford Collard Slaw and Bradford Collard Salad w/ Peanut Vinaigrette.

You can use any, preferably organic, collard greens you can find. It's best if you find them at a local farm or farmers market, since those will be the freshest, but grocery store organic collards will work.

Be sure to serve this Southern Potlikker Soup with some nice cornbread to sop up all the liquid. It's so darn delicious you won't want to miss a single drop!

4 cups fresh collard greens
4 slices bacon, cut into 1" pieces
1 cup cooked cubed ham pieces
1 medium onion, diced
2 medium carrots, sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced (or 1 tbls minced garlic from a jar)
2 cups chicken bone broth
6 cups water
salt and pepper to taste

Cut bacon into pieces and cook in a large sauce pan until crisp; remove with slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Drain all but 1 tbls. of bacon grease and add onions and carrots. Saute until vegetables become tender, about 5 minutes, scraping up all the brown bits from the bacon. Add garlic and cook for 1 more minute.

Pour in chicken bone broth and cook until it has reduced some, approx. 30 minutes; season with salt and pepper. Trim stems and roll collard greens into a cigar shape and slice into thin ribbons. Add collard greens and 6 cups water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook until greens are tender, about 30 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.

Serve hot topped with reserved crumbled bacon and a side of cornbread.

Yield: 4 servings


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