Easy Swiss Chard

Looking for an easy way to get more greens in your diet? Try this simple sautéed Swiss chard recipe.

In the spectrum of greens, Swiss chard lies between spinach and kale—not as tender as spinach, not as tough as kale. But like spinach, you can easily sauté it in some olive oil in just a few minutes.

The stems can be tough. You can either remove them and discard (or boil and toss with butter), if some of the stems are tender, just sauté them first before adding the leaves, to give them more cooking time.

By the way, not only is chard packed with vitamins (vitamins K, A, and C), it also is anti-inflammatory and helps the body manage blood sugar. It’s in the same family as beets, spinach, and quinoa. Even more reasons to eat chard!

For this easy sauté we are cooking the chard in just a little olive oil with some thinly sliced garlic and red pepper flakes. We’re also including coriander seeds which taste fantastic with the chard. If you don’t have coriander, you can skip it, but if you do have it it will make this simple swiss chard dish truly special.

Recipe and photos updated, first published 2005.

  • Prep: 5 minutes
  • Cook: 15 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 2-4 (depending on the amount of chard)

The coriander seeds are optional because not everyone has them in their spice rack. But if you do, please use them! Coriander is wonderful with chard.


  • 1 large bunch of fresh Swiss chard
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced
  • Pinch of dried crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon of whole coriander seeds (optional)


1 Prep the chard stalks and leaves: Rinse out the Swiss chard leaves thoroughly. Either tear or cut away the thick stalks from the leaves.

Cut the stalk pieces into 1-inch pieces. Chop the leaves into inch-wide strips. Keep the stalks and leaves separate.

2 Sauté garlic and crushed red pepper flakes: Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan on medium high heat. Add garlic slices, crushed red pepper, and coriander seeds (if using), and cook for about 30 seconds, or until the garlic is fragrant.

3 Add Swiss chard stalks: Add the chopped Swiss chard stalks. Lower the heat to low, cover and cook for 3 to 4 minutes.


4 Add the chopped leaves: Add the chopped chard leaves, toss with the oil and garlic in the pan. Cover and cook for 3 to 4 more minutes. Turn the leaves and the stalks over in the pan.

swiss-chard-method-2 swiss-chard-method-3

If the chard still needs a bit more cooking (remove a piece and taste it), cover and cook a few more minutes.

Serve immediately.



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Swiss Chard

Main Ingredients