Sauteed Chard, Anti-cancer Recipes - Cook for Your Life

Swiss chard works hard for recognition on the American dinner table. Cooks are often reluctant to tackle its huge green leaves and strong spine. But chard deserves a second look, since each leaf is a wonder of nutrition.

When compared with the nutrient density of 47 fruits and vegetables, chard is ranked as the third most nutrient-dense. Containing important vitamins and minerals, one cup of cooked chard contains an amazing 214% of the recommended daily amount of vitamin A and 53% of vitamin C, both important nutrients for a healthy immune system. Chard is also an excellent source of iron, which supports immune function and energy production. It also has manganese – a potent antioxidant – and vitamin K and fiber, and it’s rich in lutein, a carotenoid that acts as an antioxidant to minimize cellular damage from free radicals.

Chard is a member of the same plant family as beets and spinach, and actually tastes a lot like spinach when cooked, and it can be used in a variety of ways and in many recipes. It’s at the peak of its growing season in the fall.

Chef Tips

Chard comes in several varieties, with stems that range from ivory white, through yellow, to ruby red. Buy chard with deep green, crisp, springy-looking leaves. The stems should be brightly colored and free of bruising. Chard will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week if stored in a paper bag and minimal moisture.

When cooking soft leafy greens such as chard, we recommend a quick sauté for a minute until they wilt slightly, in order to keep vitamin and mineral values high. Chard stems, which are hearty, need more time to cook, so always cook them separately from the more delicate leaves.

For simple steamed chard try our Steamed Chard recipe. Chard also works well in combination with legumes and grains, like this Chickpea & Chard Chermoula, or Brown Rice & Chard Risotto.

Registered Dietitian Approved

There are many misconceptions about nutrition and cancer in widespread media. By using current scientific literature, plus recommendations of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the American Institute for Cancer Research, the National Cancer Institute, and the American Cancer Society, our Registered Dietitian, Kate Ueland, MS, RD, and our team of editors work to help our readers discern truth from myth.

The statements on this blog are not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease. Always consult your physician or registered dietitian for specific medical advice.

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