Fettuccine With Collards And Bacon


Whip up this speedy Southern-inspired pasta dish in 40 minutes.

Fettuccine with collards and bacon in a white casserole dish

Antonis Achilleos; Prop Stylist: Lydia Purcell; Food Stylist: Ruth Blackburn

Active Time:
40 mins
Total Time:
40 mins

It’s safe to say that nearly all Southerners love bacon, most love collard greens, and a generous handful of those crave pasta. Put all those favorite foods together, you’ve got this speedy Southern pasta dish!

Thin ribbons of meaty collard greens go into your favorite cast-iron skillet for a quick sauté in bacon drippings before being combined with thick al dente strands of fettuccine, Parmesan cheese, and a little pasta water to create a speedy, savory sauce that clings to every noodle. Topped with a generous handful of toasted garlicky breadcrumbs, it’s the perfect easy supper to warm you up fast on a cold night.

A Trick for Tender Greens

To avoid tough greens, fold each leaf in half and then tear or slice off the stem.


  • 1 lb. uncooked fettuccine

  • 4 garlic cloves, divided

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs

  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt, plus more for salting water

  • 8 thick-cut bacon slices, chopped

  • 1 medium-size yellow onion, finely chopped (1 1/2 cups)

  • 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper, plus more for garnish

  • 1 lb. fresh collard greens, stemmed and thinly sliced (about 6 cups)

  • 4 oz. pecorino Romano cheese, grated (about 1 cup), plus more for garnish


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high. Add fettuccine; cook until al dente, about 8 minutes. Reserve 1 1/2 cups cooking water; drain pasta, and transfer to a large heatproof bowl.

  2. Grate 1 garlic clove. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add panko, salt, and grated garlic; cook, stirring often, until panko is golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, and set aside. Wipe skillet clean.

  3. Add bacon to same skillet; cook over medium, stirring often, until crisp, about 12 minutes. Transfer cooked bacon to a plate, reserving drippings in skillet. Mince remaining 3 garlic cloves. Add onion, red pepper, and minced garlic to drippings in skillet. Cook, stirring often, until onion is tender, about 5 minutes. Add collards; cook, stirring often, until just tender, about 5 minutes. Add cooked fettuccine and bacon, cheese, and reserved 1 1/2 cups cooking water. Continue cooking over medium, tossing occasionally until sauce coats noodles, about 2 minutes.

  4. Remove from heat, and sprinkle with panko mixture. Garnish with additional cheese and crushed red pepper. Serve immediately.

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