Leeks with Greens

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

Soft, buttery, wilted leeks bring a lovely sweetness to any kind of lightly cooked cabbage or greens. This simple preparation is one I turn to frequently, both at home and when cooking at River Cottage: it’s so easy to throw together, can be made with different seasonal greens throughout most of the year, and works as a side dish to everything from a bit of grilled fish to a full-on Sunday roast.


Cooking Methodsauteeing



Total Timeunder 30 minutes

OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Family Get-together

Recipe Courseside dish

Dietary Considerationegg-free, gluten-free, halal, kosher, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free, vegetarian

Five Ingredients or LessYes


Taste and Texturebuttery, savory

Type of Dishvegetable


  • About 1 pound leeks, white part only
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 savoy or other green cabbage, 2 pounds braising greens, or 2 bunches curly kale
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Slice the leeks finely and give them a good rinse to get rid of any grit. Heat the butter in a large frying pan or wide saucepan and add the leeks with a pinch of salt. Let them cook gently for 5 to 6 minutes, stirring or shaking the pan occasionally, until wilted and tender.

  2. Meanwhile, trim and coarsely shred the cabbage, greens, or kale. Cook lightly - in either a steamer or a large saucepan of salted water - for 3 to 4 minutes, until wilted and tender but not too soft. Remove from the heat immediately, drain well, and let the excess moisture steam off for a minute or so. Then add to the pan of buttery leeks, along with some more seasoning, and stir over a low heat for about a minute until thoroughly combined. Serve right away.


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