Easy Creamed Swiss Chard with Garlic Breadcrumbs

3 mins read

This easy creamed Swiss chard gets the comfort food treatment thanks to a light but creamy sauce topped with crispy garlic Panko breadcrumbs for a side dish so good it’ll give creamed spinach a run for its money.


I love a tender green veg at my holiday table. Whether it’s my green beans with browned butter almondine or my roasted Brussel sprouts with pancetta, and whether I’m celebrating Easter, Thanksgiving, or Christmas, it’s nice to have a lighter, healthier dish to help balance out all of the richness. That’s where this super easy, healthy-ish creamed Swiss chard comes in, and it makes for an excellent addition to your holiday table.

Swiss chard is a gorgeous green from the beet family. It boasts a mellow flavor and is rich in vitamins A, K, C, and minerals, so it’s teeming with nutrition. Some people claim fresh chard has a bitter bite, but with cooking, the bitterness fades. Its dark green leaves also have a nice, soft texture, more tender like spinach and less like kale. And when made into a creamy side dish, this leafy green vegetable is a star. Here, it’s bathed in a light and savory cream sauce and topped with garlicky toasted breadcrumbs for extra savory flavor and an irresistible crunchy bite.

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What’s in This Creamed Swiss Chard Recipe

This creamed Swiss chard gets a double dose of flavor and texture from a savory and light cream sauce and a salty, crunchy breadcrumb topping.

Here’s what you’ll need: 

  • Swiss chard––you could use regular Swiss chard or rainbow chard
  • Butter
  • Garlic––I press or mince mine, but you could do garlic slices instead
  • Shallot (or yellow onion)
  • Cream cheese––adds a light and creamy tang and richness in every bite
  • Chicken stock (my homemade version is incredibly easy). Feel free to use vegetable stock if you want to make this vegetarian.
  • Nutmeg (ground or freshly grated)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Breadcrumbs
  • McCormick Black Garlic Powder Seasoning (you could just use garlic powder if you can’t find this)
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Parsley (fresh or dried, but you could also use thyme or rosemary in this)

Tip: If you want to a bit of heat, consider adding some red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper.


How to Make Creamed Swiss Chard

This creamed chard couldn’t be easier to make. With this recipe you won’t find a cream and flour roux to clump and squelch the tender leaves, turning them into globs of dough.

Here’s how to make it:

Make the toasty breadcrumb topping. Melt some butter (or you could use a little olive oil here) in a medium pan over medium-high heat. Add the breadcrumbs and season with the garlic seasoning and kosher salt. Stir often to be sure the panko toasts to a golden brown but doesn’t burn. Let them cool, then stir in the parsley and Parmesan cheese.

Trim those stems. It seems tragic to do so, what with how striking they are, but that’s where a lot of the bitter bite and toughness hides. Use a sharp paring knife to trim the stems from the leafy greens and roughly chop in prep for sautéeing.


Make the Creamy Sauce

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and sauté for 3-5 minutes until the onions soften, stirring often.

Add the cream cheese and the chicken stock. Whisk together until the cream cheese melts into the broth and the mixture is smooth. Season with the nutmeg, salt, and pepper and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, stirring until thickened.


Assemble and Serve

Add half of the Swiss chard to the creamy sauce, gently folding it until it wilts and softens. Then add the remaining chard and fold it into the mix until it softens and reduces as well.

Sprinkle the creamed chard with the toasted breadcrumbs and transfer to a serving dish.

What to Serve With This Creamed Swiss Chard

More Side Dish Recipes That Deserve Your Attention

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