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Kale with Southern Sweet-Potato Coconut Sauce

Even kids will ask for more kale when you top it with Southern Sweet-Potato Coconut Sauce. It's like having a little bit of pumpkin pie along with these healthy and bountiful greens. Try the sauce on collards, mustard greens, or Swiss chard, too. You can make the sauce up to four days in advance and use any extra to make the easy salad dressing described in the notes below.

Kale cooked with red onion and topped with Southern Sweet-Potato Coconut Sauce. Easy, vegan, healthy, and delicious. (c)2014 Cook for Good.

Kale with Southern Sweet-Potato Coconut Sauce

Active time: 40 minutes. Total time: 8 hours. Yield: 4 cups or 8 servings.


  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground chipotle
  • 6 ounces kale

Southern Sweet-Potato Coconut Sauce

  • 1 medium sweet potato (250 grams)
  • 1 1/3 cup full-fat coconut milk (canned, not boxed coconut-milk beverage)
  • 1/2 cup sorghum
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • pinch salt
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla


  1. Start making Southern Sweet-Potato Coconut Sauce at least seven hours before serving. Shake coconut milk, open can, and then stir to blend in any coconut cream that has separated from the milk. Pour coconut milk into a small (1.5 quart or 6 cup) slow cooker and turn it on. (Use the low setting if you have a choice.) Peel sweet potatoes, slice thin, and add to coconut milk. Stir in sorghum, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, and salt. Cover and cook for seven to eight hours until sweet potatoes are very soft. Break up sweet potatoes by whisking with a wire whisk or mashing with a wooden spoon. If the sauce isn't smooth, let it cook for ten minutes more minutes to soften the sweet potato bits, then whisk or stir again. Stir in vinegar and vanilla. Taste and adjust seasonings.

    Make Southern Sweet-Potato Coconut Sauce in a slow cooker for greens and salad dressings. Vegan, healthy, and delicious. (c)2014 Cook for Good.

  2. Prepare kale about 30 minutes before serving. Mince garlic and set aside. Heat olive oil in a medium pot over medium low heat. Peel onion and slice thin, then add to olive oil. Cook until soft, stirring to avoid burning, for about five minutes.
  3. Chop kale stems into 1/2 inch pieces and add to onion. Tear or cut kale leaves into pieces about 2 inches across. Stir chipotle into onion mixture, then add kale. Cover and reduce heat to simmer. Cook kale until soft but not limp, about 10 to 15 minutes, stirring once or twice.
  4. Serve kale hot with a generous drizzle of Southern Sweet-Potato Coconut Sauce. If you have any sauced kale left, toss to spread sauce and refrigerate for up to four days. Refrigerate or freeze remaining sauce.


  • Save ten minutes by starting with a pre-rinsed and chopped bag of fresh kale. I rinse bagged greens and salad even if they've been pre-washed, but with fewer changes of water than if I'm starting with field-fresh produce.
  • For a healthy salad dressing, mix three parts Southern Sweet-Potato Coconut Sauce with one part apple cider vinegar and stir to blend.
  • Make frosting too. This recipe calls for 1/3 cup less coconut milk than is in a full can of Thai Kitchen coconut milk (13.66 fluid ounces or 403 milliliters) because I used the other 1/3 cup to make Sweet Heart, Strong Heart Chocolate Frosting. If you want to use a full can, then just use a slightly larger sweet potato and perhaps a teaspoon more sorghum.

Reader Comments (1)

Charlotte just asked me:

What is the "sorghum" in this recipe? Is it sorghum flour or something else?

Great question! I just started using it myself two years ago and now it's my new liquid sweetener of choice. Learn more about it, including a place to order organic sorghum syrup, in the recipe for Zesty Banana Pancakes. You can also get it at some Whole Foods, natural foods markets, and regular grocery stores.

Feb 2, 2014 | Registered CommenterLinda Watson
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