Swap In Collard Greens For An Even More Nutritious Lettuce Wrap

There's not a bad word that we can say about lettuce wraps. They're crisp and delicious, lack the carbs of a regular wrap — so there's no heavy feeling when you eat several at a time — and most of all, they're good for you. However, if you want all these benefits but with more nutrients, use collard greens in place of lettuce for your wraps.

Earthy with a touch of bitterness, collard greens are best known as a comfort dish. They're cooked down into delicate leaves and combined with plenty of ham hock or bacon to make Southern collard greens. As beloved as the dish is, collard greens have many lives and are just as good when used in wraps. Although lettuce is seen as the king of wraps, in terms of health, collard greens reign supreme. Collard greens, which are high in vitamins A, B, and C, also provide a higher amount of vitamin K than lettuce.

Nutrition aside, collard green's taste is the perfect foundation for all the rich flavors placed in wraps, particularly the sweeter ones. In these cranberry collard green rolls, the leafy green uses its bitterness to balance the taste of sweet potatoes and tangy cranberry sauce. While this fall-forward dish explores the best of collard green's flavor, the leaf shines in other wraps, as well.

How to prep collard greens for wraps

As a hardier vegetable, we wouldn't recommend using raw collard greens for wraps. While they are edible, their bitterness and tough texture are on full display when uncooked. Instead, par-cook them quickly to make them tender enough for wraps. After removing the stem, boil the leaves in water for less than 30 seconds and then let them rest in an ice bath. Alternatively, you can steam them in a small amount of water for around one or two minutes, or until it slightly softens. Afterward, let them cool down and air dry.

Once the leaves are ready to go, they can be swapped for lettuce in any appetizing wrap, such as these Thai crispy tofu lettuce wraps. Peanut butter and collard greens aren't a familiar combination, but the shared earthiness of the two and peanut butter's sweetness should certainly make it more common. Heightened with a dash of maple syrup, this spicy, tangy wrap is sure to be a cloud-pleaser.

Collard greens can also take the place of traditional wraps. Use it in place of bread for these plant-based tofu shawarma pitas. The rich spices, zesty pickles, and nutty tahini were made to be placed on a platter of bitter kale.