Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Swiss Chard Sauté

Swiss Chard Sauté

Swiss chard stems and leaves quickly sautéed with a bit of onion and finished with a splash of vinegar. This side dish goes with a variety of meals and uses a large bunch of chard.

Buy ALL the vegetables!
Eat ALL the rainbows!

If you haven't seen Hyperbole and a Half's hilarious post, This is Why I'll Never be an Adult, (which provided me the inspiration for the intro to today's post) please do yourself a favor and pop over to read it. You can find it here, and I'll wait patiently while you read.  I've got a cup of tea handy.

Have you ever gone shopping--at the farmer's market, the grocery store, or Costco--and been struck with the desire to EAT ALL THE RAINBOWS? You buy more vegetables than your fridge can hold, convinced that this time, THIS TIME will be different and you'll magically find room for it all and eat everything before it spoils. That's the problem--buy too many bags of potato chips and they'll keep wherever you find space for them. Not so much for bags of Swiss chard. 
I rarely shop at the farmer's market since my Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farmers do such a terrific job of keeping me in fresh veggies from June into December (and then I do a pretty good job of keeping myself in veggies for the intervening months, eating up the veggies I've put up in the freezer, the pantry, and the Strategic Winter Squash Reserve). Mostly when I hit the farmer's market I'm picking up honey, maple syrup, and the occasional mushroom. If I didn't have a CSA, though, I'd routinely come home with more produce than I could store.
This side dish is great for when your pile of new veggies exceeds your available fridge space. [While I'm doing my weekly post-CSA pickup vegetable triage, I leave Swiss chard on the counter. A lovely large bunch takes up so much room that I may as well sauté it up and serve it with dinner.] It's fast, requires very few pantry staples, and goes with a variety of entrees from fried eggs to Beetloaf. While it is a simple recipe, it's great to have a fast, easy, and basic cooked greens side dish method in your back pocket [next to your phone].

For other Swiss Chard recipes, please see my Swiss Chard Recipe Collection, part of my Visual Recipe Index.

Swiss Chard Sauté

1 large bunch Swiss chard (about 3 to 4 cups stems and 6 cups leaves)
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 to 2 teaspoons dried minced onion, or ¼ cup finely chopped onion or shallot
½ teaspoon salt (I use kosher)
¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 to 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar (or sherry, white, or rice wine vinegar)

Chop chard stems into bite-sized pieces. Preheat a large (12 inch) skillet to medium heat, add olive oil, and sauté stems (and fresh onions, if using) for 3 to 5 minutes until starting to soften. Stir dried onion, if using, into the stems after they've begun to soften. Slice leaves into ribbons. Add chard leaves to the skillet by the handful, stirring to coat with oil and then covering the skillet to let leaves wilt for a couple of minutes before adding additional handfuls. Repeat until all leaves are incorporated and wilted. Finish with a drizzle of vinegar. Serve hot.


  1. This looks awesome- I think the apple cider vinegar is terribly underrated (as is swiss chard!)

    1. Jessy,
      I agree-I grew up with vinegar on swiss chard and it's one of my favorite ways to enjoy it (though I admit I love beet greens more, which is probably greens adultery but oh well).
      Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Sauteed swiss chard is super easy and yet I rarely do it. I have no idea why, but I should change that this year.

    1. Meghan,
      Clearly you have more room in your fridge than I do! I simply can't fit the chard in--so it's a matter of not wasting food for me.
      You make colorful composed salads look super easy, and yet I rarely do them. I should change that this year--along with adding more fresh ginger to my life.