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All about “Swiss Chard / Chard”

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Swiss chard, a little-known vegetable

The chard, also called Swiss chard, is a vegetable often unknown to consumers. Chard ribs have a taste similar to beet, however the leaves will have a taste reminiscent of spinach. It is easy to cook, both savory and sweet, as in Swiss chard pie, a specialty from Nice.

Characteristics of the chard:

  • Rich in fiber;
  • Low in calories;
  • Source of vitamin K;
  • Source of iron;
  • Stimulates intestinal transit.

What is the chard?

Swiss chard identity card

  • Type: Vegetable;
  • Family: Amaranthaceae;
  • Origin: Mediterranean basin;
  • Season: June to November;
  • Green color ;
  • Flavor: Sweet.

Chard characteristics

When it is harvested, the chard forms long, broad, green leaves with a white part in the center called the chard rib.

Word from the nutritionist

Swiss chard is rich in water and low in calories. It is a food of choice in times of weight loss.

Nutritional values

For 100g of cooked chard:

Nutrients                                                               Quantities                                                             
Protein 0.7g
Fat 0 g
Carbohydrates 0.46 g
Water 95.3 g
Fibers 2.5g
Vitamin C 18 mg
Beta carotene 4100 µg
Calcium 80 mg
Potassium 510 mg
Iron 2.3 mg
Magnesium 86 mg


7 benefits of Swiss chard: why eat it?

  1. The fibers contained in the chard will have a regulatory role on intestinal transit and will also help to fight against constipation.
  2. There is glutamine in Swiss chard, it is an amino acid that helps slow cell aging and regenerate body cells.
  3. Potassium being present in good quantity, it will help regulate blood pressure and will therefore be an ally in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases.
  4. Brought in sufficient quantity, iron allows oxygen to be transported in the body in a fair and efficient manner. Swiss chard is rich in them and their consumption will allow you to avoid anemia.
  5. The wealth of antioxidants in beta-carotenes will help you maintain all of your body tissues but more specifically the pigments of the retina rods and help you maintain good eyesight over the years.
  6. We find the coagulating properties in the vitamin K brought by the chard, in fact this vitamin is essential to fight effectively against the haemorrhages and thus to reduce the risks of cardiovascular diseases.
  7. The contribution of fibers by the chard will regulate the transit but also regulate the glycemia and favor a good elimination of fats.

How to choose your chard

An average chard weighs around 200g, you will find it on market stalls from June to November. To choose it well, choose a chard with very firm white or red ribs and dark green leaves.

The different forms

Originally very close to beets, Swiss chard is a derivative of the same subspecies. You can find chard red or white, it has very little influence on the flavor of the chard.

Keep well

Chard will keep better if you put it in the vegetable drawer of the refrigerator.

Chard preparation

How to cook it? How to match it?

  • The leaves as the ribs are consumed, however it is important to separate them because their cooking time is not identical.
  • If you cook with boiling water, it will take only 2 to 3 minutes of cooking for the leaves against 7 to 10 minutes for the ribs.
  • To cook Swiss chard easily, you can try Swiss chard pie, Swiss chard ravioli or Swiss chard tian.
  • Swiss chard can also be cooked like spinach, in a pan or blanched in water, added in an omelet, quiche or in an omoniere garnished with meat or fish stuffing.
  • You can make very good Swiss chard gratins by mixing them with béchamel and making them all gratin with grated gruyère.

History of Swiss chard

Swiss chard is native to the Mediterranean basin where it has been cultivated since Antiquity.
In the Middle Ages, it was eaten with leek in the form of a soup.
In the 16th century, the botanist Bauhin listed the different varieties of Swiss chard and discovered a great diversity, especially in terms of their color.
Very popular with consumers, it is now grown in large quantities.

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