Smoked Turkey Collards

A Great Side Dish For Thanksgiving, or any time!

Greens On Plate

Greens, greens, I love some greens, on the far side of the hill! Yes, the New Christie Minstrels said it best back in the fabulous sixties, in one of the best songs about greens ever recorded. Wait, what? The song wasn’t about collard greens? Well, as far as I’m concerned there should be a great number of songs touting the virtues of collard greens.

The plan was to post a Thanksgiving pulled pork recipe, but it wasn’t quite at 100% so I decided to work on it a bit longer and post one of the side dishes, which was 100%. The side dish of which I speak is smoked turkey collard greens. I know the trendy green these days is kale, but I have to say, my favorite of all greens are collards. I understand that kale is on the way out, to be replaced by some other trendy green. Chard? Dandelion? Turnip? Whatever is the flavor of the moment, I am pretty sure that collard greens will always be my favorite. I can’t say for sure if it the greens themselves or the way they are prepared that fuel my obsession, but the juice, or “pot liquor” as it is known, is the tasty elixir that makes this dish one of the tastiest.

Smoked Turkey

Traditionally, this is made with ham hocks, but to “Thanksgiving” this puppy up a bit, and also just because they are dang tasty, I used smoked turkey thighs.

I used about 2-1/2 pounds of collard greens, with stems still attached.

Start out by removing the stems from the greens. Grip the stem with one had, place  the other hand at the base of the leaf. Pull on the stem and zip off the leaf. Place in a large bowl or sink. Fill with water and soak 15-20 minutes to remove all the schmutz, of which there will be plenty. Grab a stack of leaves, and roll them up like a “see-gar”. Slice the roll in about 1/2″ strips until all the greens are sliced.

Greens Stacked

The dirt and whatnot will sink to the bottom, so remove the leaves from the water fairly gently so as not to jostle the water too much.

Heat up some oil in the pressure cooker. Add in some diced onion, BAM!, and sauté until translucent. Plop in the garlic and sauté for another minute.

Pour in the chicken broth and bring to a simmer.

Greens With Top

Put the greens in the pot. It is best to use your largest pressure cooker, which in my case would be my 7 litre Kuhn Rikon, but since my KR was at the time housing a 6-pound pork butt, it was up to my Instant Pot to pick up the slack and cook my greens.

If your greens fill your pot past the maximum line, I usually put any top that fits fairly well on top of my cooker and steam the greens until they are below the max line. This usually takes just a couple of minutes.

When the greens are down to a manageable level, put in a couple of tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, a tablespoon of brown sugar, some salt and pepper and a shake of crushed red peppers.

Greens Turkey On Top

Top the greens with a couple of smoked turkey thighs.

Lock the top on the pressure cooker, bring to high pressure, adjust heat to maintain high pressure if using a stovetop model. Set the time for 25 minutes.

Greens Turkey Cooked

When time is up, immediately remove from heat. If using an electric pressure cooker, immediately remove the inner pot of the cooker.

Take the turkey thighs and place on a plate or cutting board.

Turkey Thighs Plate

Let them cool for 5 minutes or so and with a fork remove the meat from the bones. Remove most of the skin but it’s fine to leave a little. It is where most of the flavor is, don’t you know.

Turkey Shredded

Now, take that tasty turkey and blend it back in with the greens.

Pour into a serving bowl, or if you are serving later, put in a sealable container and refrigerate.

Smoked Turkey Greens Cooked

Makes a tasty side to any BBQ meal, and also a great addition to any Thanksgiving spread.

Smoked Turkey Collards
Recipe type: side dish
Cuisine: southern
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 8 servings
A turkey-ized take on the Southern classic, perfect for a holiday side dish
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 1 sweet onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 2-1/2 pounds collard greens (weight with stems), stems removed and chopped into ½" strips
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 rounded tablespoon brown sugar
  • A few grinds of black pepper
  • A sprinkle of crushed red pepper (around ⅛ teaspoon)
  • 2 smoked turkey thighs
  1. With the pressure cooker pot on medium high heat, place 2 tablespoons oil
  2. When oil looks shimmery, add the onions and sauté until translucent
  3. Add the garlic and continue to sauté for another minute
  4. Pour the chicken stock into the pot
  5. Place the greens into the pressure cooker
  6. If it is above the maximum limit line, put any lid that will fit on top for a couple minutes and let steam until the greens are below the maximum line
  7. Add the vinegar, brown sugar, salt, black pepper and crushed red pepper
  8. Place the smoked turkey thighs on top
  9. Lock lid on pressure cooker and set time for 25 minutes
  10. When time is up, do a quick release and immediately remove the inner pot from the pressure cooker, if using electric
  11. Remove the turkey to a plate, let cool for 5 minutes or so, then use a fork to remove the meat from the bones. Discard most of the skin, but you can leave a little of it.
  12. Add the turkey meat back into the greens and mix with a spoon
  13. Move to a serving bowl and serve


Pressure Cooker Rice and Peas

Or Should It Be Rice and Legumes?

Peas and Rice Plate

Is it rice and peas or rice and beans? This is the conundrum with which I am faced. I used black beans for this dish since that is what I found at the store. Sometime in SoCal it can be difficult to find much besides black beans and pinto beans, depending on which store you go to. At this particular store, I could have bought kidney beans which work well for this recipe, but they only had cans that were about the size of the old oil drums which some people make smokers out of. Anyway back to the pea or bean debate. This dish is traditionally made with pigeon peas, which I suppose is where the name is derived from, even though the pigeon pea seems to be closer to a bean, much like the humble black eyed pea, which I would also consider a bean.

Rice and PeasKidney beans are often used for this as well, especially here in the states. But as I said, I used black beans. Canned black beans I might add. Partly so everything can cook at once and partly because my goal here was to make a super-quick side dish to accompany my Brown Stew Chicken recipe.

I am posting this during the week, in my usual non-recipe post because it is one of those that is just so dang simple that it barely qualifies as a recipe.

Beans and RiceJust take a can of beans (drained but liquid reserved), 2 cups of rice (I use Basmati. Different types of rice may require adjusting the liquid a bit.), 1 can of coconut milk and enough water to make 3 – 1/2 cups of liquid when combined with the bean liquid and the coconut milk.

Put this in your pressure cooker (I used the Instant Pot so I could just set it and let it go while I worked on my chicken in the stove top pressure cooker.) Add some Allspice, dried Thyme, salt, pepper and garlic powder.

Beans Rice Onions

Lock the top on the pressure cooker and set for 4 minutes at high pressure.

When the time is up, let the pressure come down on its own for 10 minutes then do a quick release.

I like to let it sit for 2-3 minutes with the lid off in order to absorb a little more of the liquid.

Rice and Peas Finished

Makes a great side dish to any Caribbean meal!

Pressure Cooker Rice and Peas
Recipe type: Side Dish
Cuisine: Caribbean
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6 servings
A quick version of the Caribbean side dish. Goes great with any Caribbean entree.
  • 2 cups basmati rice
  • 1 can beans (I used black beans, you can also use red beans or kidney beans), drained and liquid reserved
  • Water as needed
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced (white part and a couple inches of the green part)
  1. Put reserved bean liquid and coconut milk in a large measuring cup
  2. Add enough water to make a total of 3-1/2 cups liquid
  3. Put rice, liquid and the rest of the ingredients in the pressure cooker pot
  4. Lock lid on pressure cooker and set to come to high pressure for 4 minutes
  5. When time is up, turn off cooker and let the pressure come down on its own for 10 minutes, then do a quick release
  6. Remove cover
  7. I like to let it sit a couple minutes after the lid is removed to absorb a bit more liquid, but you can serve immediately if the texture is to your liking


Pressure Cooker Hawaiian Macaroni Salad

Plate Lunch Style Macaroni Salad Made Quicker

Mac Salad Plate4

Alright, let me clear up a couple things from the get-go. Yes, it is called Hawaiian Macaroni Salad, but that does not mean that it has pineapple in it. There is NO pineapple in this, and simply adding pineapple to something does not make it Hawaiian. Also, this is in no way, shape or form intended to be a healthy dish, so please do not try to substitute Low Fat Mayo, skim milk or brown rice (or spelt, etc.) macaroni. Any of those changes will automatically render this dish Non-Hawaiian.

Mac Salad Ingredients

This dish is meant to emulate the creamy, decadent macaroni salad that is typically served with the Hawaiian Plate Lunch. If you have never had a plate lunch, it usually comes with one or two entrees such as Teriyaki Chicken or Kalua Pig, with two scoops of rice and a scoop of macaroni salad. It is definitely not “diet” food, but it is definitely delicious. I will admit, though, that I have used less mayo and milk than most recipes call for (believe it or not).

Celery Scallion

I have found that adding the vinegar to the water while cooking the pasta will permeate the macaroni with vinegar flavor, giving it the “tangy” quality that restaurant versions have. If you taste the macaroni by itself, you may find it kind of odd tasting, but once it is all mixed together you will have a tangy, tasty treat.

Grated Carrot

I made this in the electric pressure cooker, so that is how I wrote the recipe. You can easily use a stovetop model using the same timing. But make sure that you are cooking on LOW pressure, so as not to overcook the macaroni.

Start by dumping the macaroni into the pressure cooker pot.

Add 1/2 cup rice vinegar and about 2-1/2 cups water (liquid should just barely cover the macaroni, adjust as needed). Apple cider vinegar will also work, but I prefer the milder taste of Rice Vinegar.

Add a tablespoon of oil to help reduce foaming and salt the water liberally.

Place the top on the pressure cooker and set for LOW pressure.

Set the time for half the time that is listed on the macaroni package (mine said 9-11 minutes, I set the time for 5 minutes). You want the macaroni to be soft and fluffy, not al dente, so that it will easily absorb the dressing.

While the macaroni is cooking, get your dressing ready. In a bowl whisk together 1-1/4 cup mayonnaise, 1 cup milk, a tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce, a couple teaspoons prepared mustard, a tablespoon of brown sugar and one teaspoon of onion powder. This mixture will look thin, but once it is blended into the macaroni and some of it is absorbed it will be just right.

Mac Salad Dressing

When time is up, do a quick release. Remove the top and let it sit for about a minute.

Transfer the macaroni to a colander and quickly rinse with cold water. Drain for a few minutes, then transfer macaroni to a large bowl.

Macaroni Cooked

Add about 1/4 cup grated carrot, 2 stalks finely chopped celery and 3 finely chopped scallions and mix together. I used the medium side of a box grater for the carrot.

Pour the mayo/milk mixture over macaroni and stir it all together.

Taste and add salt, if needed.

Mac Salad Mixing

Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to let the flavors meld.

Top with freshly ground black pepper and/or paprika, if desired.

For authentic plate lunch, serve with white rice and an entree, such as teriyaki chicken. It is also a great side for just abut anything, Hawaiian or not!

Mac Salad PLate1

Pressure Cooker Hawaiian Macaroni Salad
Recipe type: Side Dish
Cuisine: Hawaiian
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 8-12 servings
The Hawaiian plate lunch staple made quicker and tangier by using the pressure cooker
  • 1 pound large elbow macaroni
  • ½ cup rice vinegar
  • 2-1/2 cups water (approximately)
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • salt
  • 1-1/4 cups mayonnaise (not "Lite")
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 teaspoons prepared mustard
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ cup grated carrot
  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 3 scallions, finely chopped
  1. Dump macaroni into pressure cooker pot
  2. Add the rice vinegar and about 2-1/2 cups water (liquid should just barely cover the macaroni, adjust as needed)
  3. Add the oil (to help reduce foaming) and salt the water liberally
  4. Place top on pressure cooker and set for LOW pressure
  5. Set time for half the time listed on macaroni package (mine said 9-11 minutes, I set time for 5 minutes. You want the macaroni to be soft and fluffy, not al dente)
  6. While macaroni is cooking, in a bowl whisk together mayonnaise, milk, Worcestershire Sauce, mustard, brown sugar and onion powder
  7. When time is up, do a quick release
  8. Transfer macaroni to colander and quickly rinse with cold water and drain for a few minutes
  9. In a large bowl mix together macaroni, carrot, celery and scallion
  10. Pour mayo/milk mixture over macaroni and stir it all together
  11. Taste and add salt, if needed
  12. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes
  13. Top with freshly ground black pepper and/or paprika, if desired


The Pressure Cooker Convert Poll

Since we have been going through a heatwave here for a couple weeks, my pressure cooker recipes have slowed down a bit, but I have been working behind the scenes (behind the scenes=at the beach!). I’ve been trying to think of ways to improve my site without straying too far from the theme of the blog.

Keeping that in mind, I just wanted to throw something out there to see what others might think. Lately I’ve been toying with the idea of posting some recipes for some of the side dishes that I have shown, side dishes that may not use the pressure cooker such as the Bacon Cole Slaw with Homemade Mayo that I showed in my recent post on Pressure Cooker Pulled Turkey. Now, I don’t want to go too far beyond the scope of this blog, which, of course, is pressure cooking. But is including side dishes that pair well with the pressure cooker recipes too far out of bounds?

Cole Slaw pictured here:


So I pose this question: Would you like to see some of these recipes included on this blog to accompany the pressure cooker recipes, or would you prefer that only pressure cooker recipes appear on this blog?

I would very much appreciate any and all comments you might have.

Pressure Cooker German Potato Salad

A Super Quick Pressure Cooker Version of Classic German Potato Salad


Classic? Maybe. Traditional? I’m not so sure.


The first time I set this dish in front of the S.O., who is from Germany, she asked me what it was. I replied, “Warm Potato Salad, like in Germany!”

“That’s news to me. I’ve never had warm potato salad in my life, and I used to have potato salad all the time in Germany!” was her reply.


Of course, it’s entirely possible that it is a regional thing, and she happens to be from the “Cold Potato Salad” area of Germany.

But, authentic or not, one thing for sure is that this is pretty dang tasty.


And also, a disclaimer: just because this is mayo-free, it is by no means “low-cal” or “healthy.” It is full of bacon-y goodness. If you are in the market for something a little lighter and healthier, give the “Italian Potato Salad” a try at It looks delicious as well.


The most time-consuming thing about this recipe is cooking the bacon. Once the bacon is cooked, everything else just takes a few minutes. If you plan ahead (I never can, but maybe you can), cook some extra bacon for breakfast one day, and save it (along with some of the grease), and this will go even quicker.


I used small red potatoes, and cut them into around 1/2″-3/4″ chunks. And try to get extra thick bacon, it works best with this dish.

After opening, adjust the salt and pepper to taste, making sure it has cooled enough to taste first. Or should I say: “Making thure it ith cool enough to tathte firtht (the tongue bandages come off next week). You may not need much salt depending on what bacon you use.

This goes great with sausage and sauerkraut (of course), but also could be a good alternative to fries, served with a corned beef sandwich or hot dog.

I usually serve this just a little warm, not “hot”, but I have also had it cold and it is good that way, too.


So give it a try for the true taste of the “Old Country” (if by “Old Country” you mean somewhere in Minnesota).

Pressure Cooker German Potato Salad
Recipe type: Side Dish
Cuisine: German
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
A speedy pressure cooker preparation of the classic warm German Potato Salad
  • 6 slices thick-cut bacon (about ½ lb.)
  • 2 lb. red potatoes, cut in ½"-3/4" chunks
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 splash worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon prepared mustard (grainy or Dijon both work fine)
  • ½ teaspoon celery seed
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf (italian) parsley
  1. Put pressure cooker pot over medium high heat
  2. Roughly chop the raw bacon (you can leave it whole if you have a large pot, but I do it this way because it fits better)
  3. Put bacon in pot and fry until crisp (around 15 min. total)
  4. Remove with a slotted spoon to a plate
  5. In the bacon fat, saute onions until translucent (do not brown)
  6. Chop the crisp bacon fine and add back to the pot
  7. Add potatoes to the pot
  8. Add in vinegar, broth, worcestershire sauce, mustard, celery seed, sugar and a little salt and pepper
  9. Turn heat to high, cover pressure cooker and bring to high pressure
  10. When high pressure is reached, lower heat to maintain high pressure and set timer for 5 minutes
  11. When timer sounds, remove from heat and let sit for two minutes then do a cold water release
  12. Adjust salt and pepper to taste
  13. Stir in the parsley, then let it cool (it can be served warm, or put in the refrigerator to be served later (I served it cold).