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Vegetarian Black-eyed Peas with Collard Greens {Instant Pot pressure cooker option}

Richly seasoned with onions, celery and garlic, a smoky tomato broth is the base for this hearty stew of black-eyed peas with collard greens. Make it quick and easy in your pressure cooker or Instant Pot!

Black-eyed peas and collards with soy-sage in soup bowl

With a pressure cooker or Instant Pot, there’s no need to soak the black-eyed peas beforehand. 16 minutes under pressure, and your black-eyed peas and collards stew can be done and ready in 40 minutes.

dried black-eyed peas

If you don’t have a pressure cooker or Instant Pot, it’s best to soak the black-eyed peas ahead of time. Plan on 2 hours cooking time.

You can speed up the whole meal by using canned beans and/or frozen chopped collard greens. Canned black-eyed peas and frozen collards–easy-peasy!

collard greens washed and ready to cut
how to cut collard ribbons

Enjoy this nourishing stew any time of the year, but be sure to ring in the New Year with black-eyed peas with collard greens! 

Why eat black-eyed peas and collards on New Year’s Day?

Eating black-eyed peas with collard greens on New Year’s Day is a Southern tradition dating back to the Civil War. The idea is that black-eyed peas symbolize good luck and fortune, and collard greens represent money and wealth.

Tradition calls for some sort of pork, like bacon or ham, to symbolize a healthy new year. But this is a vegetarian blog, so … for a meatless stew, skip the pork, create the intention for a vibrant fit healthy body with sautéed chunks of pretend pork, sausage flavor!

Gimme Lean imitation sausage "soysage"

What if you don’t have collard greens?

You can substitute another leafy green vegetable, like kale or chard. Like for the collards, strip the leaves from the stems and chop the leaves into ribbons or small squares. The kale will take a bit longer simmer to be tender, and the chard, less time. If using chard, chop the stems and add them to the sauté with the onions and celery.

What to serve with black-eyed peas and collards:

Hot cornbread or cheesy buttermilk cornbread muffins are a wonderful complement to flavorful beans and greens. 

Stir rice into the pot for Hoppin’ John, another Southern US original. Or simply spoon this thick stew over steamed brown rice.

This recipe for Dirty Rice with Collards and Leeks gets rave reviews on Pinterest all the time.

You might enjoy these Hoppin’ John fritters with collards for your New Year’s Day dinner.

This easy Mexican black-eyed pea salad is another winner!

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PS If you make this recipe and love it, please consider leaving a blog post comment. Your comments help other readers learn more about the recipe. If you’d also give the recipe a ✮✮✮✮✮ rating, I’d be delighted!

Nutrition information is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. The numbers will vary based on the quantity consumed, brands used and any substitutions. The numbers do not include the imitation sausage.

Nutrition Facts
Vegetarian Black-eyed Peas with Collard Greens
Amount Per Serving
Calories 184 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Fat 3g5%
Saturated Fat 0.4g3%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Sodium 903mg39%
Potassium 637mg18%
Carbohydrates 31g10%
Fiber 6g25%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 11g22%
Vitamin A 1727IU35%
Vitamin C 15mg18%
Calcium 124mg12%
Iron 4mg22%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


  • Dennis Halloran

    Site looks great, you have the right camera set up Reply · 30 December, 2013

    • Letty

      Thanks Denny,
      The photos will be even better in 2014. Sending love for 2014! Reply · 31 December, 2013

  • I will be making a very similar dish tomorrow! Reply · 31 December, 2013

  • Michael

    When do you add the tomatoes? Reply · 1 January, 2019

    • oh my gosh Michael–thank you! You add them along with the water and spices. I fixed the recipe! Enjoy! Reply · 1 January, 2019

  • CJH

    Hi! You might want to add soaking time and the 2 HOUR SIMMER to the “40 minute” total time… Reply · 2 January, 2019

    • Thank you for the note–I appreciate your feedback and so updated the recipe to clarify times for pressure cooking, regular stove-top cooking, and if using canned black-eyed peas. Reply · 2 January, 2019

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