This kale shakshuka is inspired by the classic but calls for braised greens in place of tomatoes and includes plenty of lemon, feta, Greek yogurt, za’atar, and parsley. It’s amazing at any time of day.
This riff on the breakfast-for-dinner classic, shakshuka, in which eggs are cooked to runny perfection in spiced tomatoes and peppers swaps kale, garlic, lemon, and tangy feta for the traditional sauce. Unexpected? Absolutely. Just as lovely as the original? Without a doubt. It’s essentially braised greens with eggs. Not shakshuka. But not something we’d kick out of bed. A dribble of Greek yogurt and a sprinkle of za’atar and fresh parsley make this savory supper satisfying beyond words.–Angie Zoobkoff
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 6 cloves garlic
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sweet paprika
- 1 pound kale stemmed and coarsely chopped
- Kosher salt
- 1/2 cup canned or homemade chicken stock or vegetable stock
- 4 ounces feta cheese crumbled
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- Juice of 1/2 lemon (about 2 tablespoons)
- 6 large eggs
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF (175°C).
- In a largish cast-iron skillet or cocotte over medium heat, warm the oil. Add the garlic and paprika and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds, then add the kale in 2 or 3 batches, allowing it to wilt slightly in between batches so it can all fit comfortably in the skillet. Add a generous pinch of salt and cook, stirring often, until the kale is softened, 7 to 9 minutes. Stir in the stock and cook until slightly reduced, about 5 minutes more. Add the cheese, a few turns of black pepper, a pinch of red pepper flakes, and the lemon juice. Taste and adjust the seasoning as desired. Remove from the heat.
- If using a skillet or cocotte, use the back of a large spoon to create 6 wells evenly distributed in the kale mixture. If using mini cocottes, distribute the kale mixture among 6 dishes and use the back of a large spoon to create a well in the center of each.
- Crack an egg in each well and bake, uncovered, until the whites are cooked but the yolks are still runny, 10 to 15 minutes.
- Top each cocotte with a drizzle of yogurt and a sprinkle of za’atar, parsley, salt, and pepper and serve immediately, with crusty bread if desired.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
Sautéed kale with garlic and a runny egg—already one of my favorite dishes to throw together for an easy dinner. This kale shakshuka was delightful. The kale was tender and the flavors were pronounced but balanced. I enjoyed mine with a Greek yogurt garnish, but is there a better sauce than drippy egg yolk?
I cooked in mine in a large cast-iron skillet, which worked well. A word of caution: 6 eggs to serve 6 people is not enough eggs per person for my crowd, so you may need to scale up accordingly.
Even though this kale shakshuka takes quite a bit longer than the traditional version, it was still quite easy to throw together. I actually think one could start with more than a pound of kale.
I used ramekins and it made 6 servings but I think it would be better in 4 larger ramekins or 6 smaller ones.
There are very few foods my husband will complain about eating, but kale is one of them. When he came home and saw that I had “”ruined”” a perfectly good shakshuka by replacing the tomatoes with kale he more or less threw a fit! That said, when it came time to eat, he cleaned his plate. Considering his only suggestion for improvement was to replace the kale with tomatoes, I would call it a winner.
We both agreed that the flavors in the dish were excellent—the garlicky-lemon-feta mixture really stands out and does its best to make you forget you’re eating kale, if that’s a concern to you! The cool Greek yogurt balances both the temperature and spice of the dish. I served this with homemade toasted sourdough bread, which was perfect for runny yolks and sopping up the leftover juices.
The recipe could easily be scaled up or down, which makes it perfect for a special brunch or a quick weeknight supper. I made 2/3 of a recipe, or 4 eggs, for 2 of us for dinner. I bought 2 bunches of kale from the store, they weighed 18 ounces total and then 10 ounces once destemmed, so I would save time and just buy a bag of stemmed and chopped kale that runs around 10 ounces. I used a 10-inch cast iron skillet to cook the kale and for the final dish.
My egg timing was 12 minutes spot on. I served it with a dollop of Greek yogurt, a sprinkling of za’atar, and some Maldon salt.
Great green shakshuka that would work well for breakfast, dinner or brunch with company. The recipe is easy enough to prep and serve in under an hour, scales easily for individuals or a crowd, and has just the right amount of punch to be an equal contender with traditional red shakshuka.
I was making this for just the 2 of us, so I easily scaled it to a third of the recipe, using about ⅔ of a bunch of dino (Lacinato) kale. The tang of the feta, garlic, and lemon was surprisingly effective and blended with the paprika to make a complex flavor in very little time or effort.
After transferring everything to my Staub mini coquettes, the egg whites took 14 to 15 minutes to set, though I think if you cooked all the eggs in one large coquette it might go faster since that pot is already hot from cooking the kale, so start checking at 12 minutes and watch through your oven window, if possible, as no one likes runny egg whites! Staub mini-coquettes are described as having a capacity of 8 ounces and are just the right size for individual servings. I set them on a baking tray for ease of transferring in and out of the oven.
I stirred a few drops of nice olive oil into the yogurt but it still made for more of a dollop than a drizzle. If you really want to get chef-y for a crowd, you could drizzle the yogurt from a small resealable plastic bag with the corner cut, but I didn’t worry about that. Served it with a green garnish and some toasted local levain. This was very, very good!
I was out of parsley and tho I was happy to have a bit of chopped cilantro atop my serving, himself preferred to skip that. The garlic and paprika work together really well and the amount of moisture was perfect. I felt especially virtuous getting my kale in early in the day and would gladly eat this on a regular rotation.
What a great breakfast or brunch recipe! The kale was tender and flavorful and looked beautiful with an egg in the well. I used a large cast iron skillet to make the kale, adding it in 3 batches. Timing is accurate in the recipe and the kale was cooked perfectly. The lemon juice really adds a lot to this, and although I was nervous about the za’atar after smelling it, it was quite mild and added an extra level of flavor. The drizzle of yogurt is awesome, but after my first taste, I decided to add some lemon juice to the yogurt to thin it. My daughter and I agreed that the extra lemon in the yogurt really made it.
I used the mini cocottes. Personally, I would prefer to poach or fry an egg and place that in the well and eliminate the baking, although I enjoyed how some of the kale became browned, as did the feta. Maybe bake the kale mixture while frying the eggs? For me, I like a runny egg but prefer to have the white completely cooked and baking never allows this for me.
Recipe made 6 delicious portions which we served with toasted sourdough bread. YUM!
This is a quick weeknight meal if you like a breakfast dish for dinner. There are some strong flavors with 6 cloves of minced garlic, paprika, red pepper flakes, feta, and lemon. Even with that, they all meld to work well with the kale and runny egg. The yogurt adds a nice tang and the za’atar is just good as always. I served with slices of baguette to aid in mopping up every last bit.
This can serve 6 if you have another side dish. If not, I would suggest that 3 servings with 2 eggs per mini cocotte would be a better choice.
I used baby kale (pre-washed which saved a step) and this reduced my cook time from the 7 to 9 minutes to 4 minutes on that step. I decided to use the small individual cocottes to make a prettier presentation. If I had not done the individual cocottes and instead left everything in the cast iron pan, I would have left it on the stove, covered it with a lid, and had dinner on the table even faster, entirely avoiding the oven.
This provided a simple and flavorful dinner that was ready in about 30 minutes. My husband said that each bite was like a flavor explosion.
I turned the oven on to preheat as I prepared the kale and it was ready to go around the same time the pan was ready to go into the oven. The kale was tender and the feta and lemon provided a nice bite.
We loved this. It was quick and easy for a weeknight meal.
When we make it again—and we WILL—we’ll add a bit more stock and try covering the dish to steam the kale so that it will be a bit more tender. Be sure to use a deep pan because a pound of kale is a whole lot of kale.
Be sure to stir the kale frequently right after adding to the garlic and paprika oil as we noticed the paprika and garlic cooked very quickly. We caught it right before it became too brown.
This dish has a wonderful flavor and is so easy and the method invites endless variation. A keeper for us!
Originally published February 19, 2019