Braised Kale with Basil

Learn how to braise Kale with basil. You’ll be amazed with how easy it is to braise kale finished with fresh basil, freshly grated nutmeg and balsamic vinegar

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An impressively easy and delicious braised kale with fresh basil leaves. The term braise is usually reserved for a slow and long process of cooking a tough piece of something, like meat. While true, braising also works for cooking vegetables. Depending on the type of vegetable braising time differs. Importantly, the vegetables are cooked on low heat but not necessarily for as long a period as with tough meats.

For this braised kale with basil recipe, baby organic kale works well. The baby organic kale tends to be sweeter and less harsh than regular types of kale. However, cook time is the shortest when compared to other types of kale. More importantly, any type of kale works.

Further, braising kale adds a deep depth of flavor. The rich flavor profile in this braised kale with basil, starts with sautéing aromatics like shallots, garlic and a blend of spices. What’s more, the kale is finished with lots of fresh basil, freshly grated nutmeg and aged balsamic vinegar.

While the combination of these flavors are perfect, the recipe is flexible enough to add your spin. For example, any type of kale works. However, any full grown kale, like Lacinato or Curly kales requires a longer cook time and more braising liquid. Additionally, while shallot works with the baby kale, yellow or white onions compliments full grown kale.

When making this braised kale with basil , even with the use of matured kale, be sure to add lots of basil for a fresh taste. Importantly, the basil added at the end of the cooking process ensures freshness to the final dish. Finishing the braising process with balsamic vinegar and fresh grated nutmeg gives the dish a sweet earthiness.

You may also love these kale recipes:

Kale Vegetables and Mango Salad with Red Wine Vinaigrette

Kale and Fruit Salad

Mango Kale Smoothie

5 from 1 vote

Braised Kale with Basil

This easy braised kale recipe is mindblowingly delicious, super easy to make and it's healthy too. The perfect side dish for any day of the week or a celebration recipe for the holidays.

Course Side Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian
Cuisine American, Braised, Easy, Vegan, Vegetarian Cuisine
Keyword Basil recipes, Best kale recipes, Braised kale with tomatoes and basil, brased kale with tomatoes, Easy braised kale recipe, How to braise kale, Simple braised kale recipe
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 People
Calories 150 kcal
Author Julietkitchen By Chef Yasmin


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium shallot peeled and minced
  • 4 cloves garlic peeled and minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes may use up to 3/4 teaspoons
  • 1 – 1 1/2 pints grape tomatoes halved. We love tri-color grape tomatoes
  • pinch of kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 16 ounces baby organic kale or any type of kale you prefer
  • 1/3 cup stock vegetable or chicken (may use water)
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste Note: The entire recipe can use 1/8 to 1/4 tsps salt depending on your taste and dietary requirements.
  • 2 cups packed basil leaves
  • 1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 – 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar


  1. Heat olive oil in a 3-quart deep skillet using medium heat.

  2. Saute the shallots 2 minutes until translucent and fragrant.

  3. Add the garlic and spices. Mix and cook 30 to 60 seconds.

  4. Add the tomatoes along with a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Mix to coat the tomatoes with the aromatics.

  5. Add the kale and stock (or water). Cover the pan with a tight lid. Cook 2 to 3 minutes until the kale starts to wilt.

  6. Remove the cover. Stir to coat the kale with the tomato mixture. Turn heat to medium low. If the liquid has dried up, add 2 to 4 tablespoons more.

  7. Cover the pan and continue cooking over medium low heat for 7 to 9 minutes.

  8. Remove the cover. The liquid should be mostly absorbed. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Stir/mix.

  9. Add the fresh basil leaves, Mix to combine with the kale mixture. Cook 30 to 60 seconds until the basil leaves wilt. Turn off the stove.

  10. Sprinkle in the freshly grated nutmeg and balsamic vinegar. Stir to coat the vegetables with the vinegar. Serve hot with your favorite entree. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts
Braised Kale with Basil
Amount Per Serving
Calories 150 Calories from Fat 81
% Daily Value*
Fat 9g14%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 5g
Sodium 154mg7%
Potassium 900mg26%
Carbohydrates 15g5%
Fiber 7g29%
Sugar 7g8%
Protein 6g12%
Vitamin A 13682IU274%
Vitamin C 134mg162%
Calcium 339mg34%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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