German Style Green Kale (Gruenkohl)

"I am posting this for my father, who tried a version of this recipe at the Sion Brauhaus in Cologne, Germany when he was here visiting us. He enjoyed it so much, that he asked me to find a recipe for him. This recipe, as translated directly from the German version I found in "Koch Vernuegen Wie Noch Nie" is very close to what he tried. Bacon grease is really quite essential here for the flavor - please try not to use a substitute as it just won't taste quite the same. You may use any type of cooked sausage you like, however, if you decide to throw some in at the end of the cooking process. In the area of Germany I currently live in, you would most often see bratwurst added to the kale. I am guessing on the cook time as I have not acutally made this myself yet. I will warn you that this is a very ugly looking dish and may be considered an acquired taste for some, although I find it quite delicious personally."
photo by TattooedMamaof2 photo by TattooedMamaof2
photo by TattooedMamaof2
Ready In:
1hr 30mins




  • Wash the kale in lukewarm warm very well several times to remove all grit and dirt- do not dry them off- leave them dripping wet.
  • Remove the hard stems from the leaves and then place the kale into a pot, put the lid on, and let it cook over medium heat until it wilts- this won't be terribly long.
  • Drain in colander and then dry the leaves completely.
  • Coarsley chop the kale.
  • Heat the bacon grease in a skillet, add onion and cook until brown, stirring often.
  • Add the kale to the pan, along with salt and pepper to taste, a pinch of freshly grated nutmeg, and a pinch of sugar.
  • Add the beef broth to the vegetables and stir to mix.
  • Cover and let cook 45 minutes- it should get very, very tender and will be very, very soft.
  • If you prefer, briefly cook some bratwurst in hot water according to the package directions, then add them to the pot in the last 15 minutes of cooking time.
  • Check seasonings again before serving.

Questions & Replies

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  1. Rita1652
    I liked this My kind of stuff. I`ve made something like this with collards before.I didn`t use the bratwursts. I used a smoked turkey wing instead. And I like to squeeze a lemon on it before eating!I think I`ll grow kale instead of collards this year!!!!!!!!!!
  2. Minne A.
    Delicious and definitely authentic! Made this on a cold wet night for my fam (we used to live near Cologne) and they gobbled it up. I blanched the kale and also used 2 cups beef broth for a moister (there’s that word) dish. Added 2 pkgs par-cooked (in the blanching liquid) supermarket brats with 15 minutes to go. Served with boiled baby potatoes and coarse ground mustard for those who wanted it. Guten Appetit!
  3. TattooedMamaof2
    Yum, yum, yum. Just like Oma made it! Made as written and was on point. The only thing I'd do different is cook it for a shorter amount of time, 45 minutes seemed excessive. Thank you so much! I will be making this again!
  4. SoCalTine
    This was really good. I added red wine, and a little of honey mustard, and it was a lot better. Thanks for posting it
  5. sugarpea
    I admit to switching to olive oil and omitting the bratwurst, so I didn't really expect much in the way of flavor from this recipe. I was very pleasantly surprised. This is sooo good and quite easy. I skipped the pre-wilting step and just chopped the kale before cooking. Excellent recipe that makes great kale.



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