Kale ‘Carbonara’
kale parmesan bacon

kale parmesan bacon

If you’ve got kale parmesan bacon and a little cream or eggs, you’re in for a treat!

This simple one pot recipe will have dinner on the table in 15 minutes.

And the best part is it won’t weigh you down like a big bowl of pasta.

Instead you get to enjoy the goodness of all those greens.

I know that carbonara traditionally includes egg yolk and no cream, but I really liked the sound of kale ‘carbonara’ and I felt more in the mood for cream than egg yolk… so that’s what we have.

Even with the bacon, cream and cheese it is a lighter meal.

So see the more substantial variations below if you’re feeling hungry.

Kale ‘Carbonara’

Course Dinner
Cuisine keto, low carb, modern
Keyword bacon, kale, keto, low carb, parmesan, recipe, simple
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 2 people


  • 4-6 slices bacon chopped
  • 1 large bunch kale (500g / 1lb) sliced into ribbons
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • 4 tablespoons cream
  • 2 handfuls grated parmesan 100g / 3.5oz + extra to serve


  1. Heat a little olive oil in a frying pan and cook bacon on a medium high heat until well browned.
  2. Remove bacon from the pan and add the sliced kale and garlic. Cover and cook, stirring every few minutes until the kale is wilted and deep green in colour. It will take about 5-10 minutes. If it starts to burn, add a splash of water to help generate some steam.
  3. Return bacon to the pan and add cream. Stir over the heat to warm through then remove from the heat and add the cheese.
  4. Divide between two plates and serve with extra cheese if you like.

NET CARBS: 5g / serve

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Variations for Kale Parmesan Bacon

different veg – as much as I love kale, any leafy greens such as spinach, baby spinach, chard, rainbow chard, collard greens or silverbeet can be used. Steamed broccoli is also lovely with this treatment.

more substantial (low carb) – add roast almonds, extra bacon, serve with fried or poached eggs.

more substantial / carb lovers – toss in some cooked pasta at the end. A drained can of chickpeas or white beans will do the same job without causing blood sugar problems.

paleo / more classic cabonara – replace cream with 2 egg yolks. Add the yolks with the bacon off the heat. And see the dairy-free option.

dairy-free – replace cream with 2 egg yolks and replace parmesan with grated brazil nuts and if you like a teaspoon of nutritional yeast or use my brazil nut ‘parmesan’.

vegetarian – replace bacon with chopped smoked tofu – a really lovely ingredient, or serve with a big handful of smoked almonds or other nuts, you could also use semi dried tomatoes.

vegan – cook sliced kale with garlic in olive oil and serve with more olive oil and a good few handfuls of roasted nuts or cooked legumes.

Problem Solving Guide

bland – more parmesan! or more salt. If that doesn’t work try a squeeze of lemon.

too dry – either add more cream to the pan or serve with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

kale burning – it’s important to stir the kale as it cooks. Quickly adding a few tablespoons water will generate steam and prevent burning. Also using a lower heat. If it’s really bad, quickly tip the kale in to a clean pan and soaking the burnt pan can help get rid of the worst of it.

hard to chew – a sign that your kale wasn’t cooked enough. Next time either cook for longer, or slice the kale more finely so it cooks quicker. For now remember it’s good exercise to chew!

Waste Avoidance Strategy

bacon – freeze it.

– will keep in the fridge in a plastic bag uncooked for at least 2 weeks. Once cooked like this it will keep for a month or so in the fridge. Can be frozen both cooked or raw.

– pantry in the dark or a brown paper bag to prevent sprouting.

– freeze it or use for another meal.

– wrap in waxed paper or baking paper and store in the fridge in a sealed paper bag or airtight container. Will keep for months. Can be frozen if you’re going away.

Prepare Ahead

Yes! Just cook as per the recipe but keep the parmesan separately. Leftovers will keep in the fridge for up to 2 weeks or can be frozen. To serve, warm in a pan with a little oil then add the parmesan as per the recipe.

More recipes using kale parmesan bacon

Have fun in the kitchen!

With love,
Jules x

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