Swiss chard is a leafy green vegetable with a boldly colored stem. It can be cooked in a variety of ways and added to several meals and dishes. It has a slightly bitter taste when eaten raw; cooking the chard softens the flavor and gives it a delicate taste that complements many soups, stews, and casseroles.
Simple Ways to Cook Swiss Chard
If you want to add Swiss chard to your diet as a side dish, you have two options on how to prepare it.
- Pour approximately 1 to 2 inches of water into the bottom of your pan and place the steamer basket on top.
- Tear or cut the leaves off the stems; the stems are edible, but the majority of the nutrition in the chard is in the leaves.
- Place the leaves in the steamer basket and cover tightly.
- Heat the water in the bottom of the pot to boiling; the steam will rise from the pot and cook the chard.
- Wait 5 to 10 minutes, and then remove the cover of the pan. The chard should be a brighter, darker green and lightly wilted.
- Toss with lemon juice and a small amount of sea salt to serve.
- Heat a small amount of grapeseed or another high-heat oil in the bottom of a skillet.
- Add 1 tablespoon of garlic to the hot oil and stir until fragrant.
- Tear or cut the leaves off the stems and place the leaves in the heated oil.
- Cook over high heat stirring rapidly until the chard has reduced in size, darkened in color, and has completely wilted.
- Serve immediately.
Swiss Chard Casserole
If you want to try Swiss chard in a casserole or baked pasta dish before you try it on its own, give this baked casserole a try. It uses chard as its base along with pasta, tomatoes, and cheese.
- 1 large head Swiss chard
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 medium red onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup artichoke hearts
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 3 plum tomatoes, diced
- 1/2 pound bowtie pasta
- 3/4 cup crumbled goat cheese
- 3 tablespoons olive tapenade
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- Rinse the chard well, chop or tear into pieces, and set aside.
- Bring a pot of water to a boil and cook the pasta until tender. Drain and set aside.
- Heat the oil in a skillet and add the onion, artichoke hearts, garlic, Swiss chard, and tomatoes.
- Sauté, stirring constantly until the onions are translucent and the chard has been cooked down.
- Add the vegetables to the pasta and toss to coat.
- Stir in the tapenade, goat cheese, salt and pepper, and pour into a casserole dish.
- Top with the grated Parmesan and bake at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes, or until heated through.
Add Some New Greens to Your Diet
Swiss chard is an easy to prepare, delicately flavored way to add more greens to your diet. Add it to soups, stews, or any mixture of sautéed or stir-fried vegetables. With just one try, you'll discover how easy it is to add this brightly colored vegetable to your diet.