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Tender beans and greens, caramelized onions, savoury bacon, sliced garlic, smoked paprika, and a hint of spice, star in this one-pot, low cost, crowd-pleaser served over indulgently thick slices of crunchy-edged, pan toasted garlic bread.
5 from 4 votes

Greens and Beans with Garlicky Toast

Tender beans and greens pair with caramelized onions, savoury bacon, sliced garlic, smoked paprika, and a hint of spice, are stewed up in pan juices in one single pot are then served over indulgently thick slices of crunchy-edged, pan toasted garlic bread.
Inspired by my Grandma Shaffer's recipe and Epicurious.
Course Main Course, Main Dish, Soup
Cuisine American
Keyword beans and greens, collard greens, dutch oven, greens and beans
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 731kcal
Author Rebecca Lindamood


  • 4 slices homemade or purchased crusty bread 1-inch thick
  • 3 tablespoons garlic olive oil or 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil mixed with a minced clove of garlic
  • 8 slices thick-cut bacon cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 onions peeled and thinly sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika plus extra for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 12 ounces collard greens or escarole, swiss chard, kale, or spinach, stems removed and finely chopped. Leaves torn into 3 to 4 inch sized pieces washed, and drained but not dried.
  • 2 cans (15 ounces each) Cannellini or Great Northern Beans , drained and rinsed, or just about 4 cups of home-cooked beans, drained.
  • 2 cups chicken stock plus extra if you use pre-washed, dry greens
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar or red wine or white wine vinegar, or sherry vinegar


  • 4 fried eggs


To Prepare the Garlic Toast

  • Place your Dutch oven, braiser, or skillet over medium high heat. Brush both sides of your bread slices with the garlic oil. Toast in the hot pan for about 1 1/2 minutes on each side, or until golden brown with some charred bits. Remove to a plate.

To Prepare the Beans and Greens

  • Return the pan to medium high heat and add in the cut up bacon strips. Fry, stirring frequently, until the bacon is beginning to crisp and has rendered at least 1 1/2 tablespoons of fat, about 4 minutes.
  • Stir in the onions (and chopped greens stems, if using). Fry for about 4 more minutes, or until the onions are translucent, tender, and starting to turn golden.
  • Add in the sliced garlic, smoked paprika, crushed red pepper flakes, kosher salt, black pepper, and dried thyme. Stir for 1 minute, or until fragrant.
  • Add about 1/3 of the greens and use tongs or two wooden spoons to toss with the hot onion and bacon mixture until the greens wilt, turn bright, and shrink a bit. (If you're starting with dry greens, see Cook's Notes). Repeat this until all of the greens are incorporated into the pan.
  • Add the chicken stock and vinegar, stir, and bring to a simmer. Simmer until the greens and stems reach your desired level of tenderness; for us, that's about 5 minutes.
  • Finally, add the drained and rinsed beans to the mixture and toss. Continue cooking just until the beans are heated through.

To Serve

  • Place one piece of garlic toast in a bowl, top with a generous scoop of beans, greens, and broth. If desired, top each serving with a fried egg and a dusting of smoked paprika.


Calories: 731kcal | Carbohydrates: 64g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 42g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 1876mg | Potassium: 631mg | Fiber: 16g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 4935IU | Vitamin C: 36.1mg | Calcium: 396mg | Iron: 7.2mg