Swiss chard salad is a staple salad for anyone who has lots of chard – it can get away from gardeners at this time of year and is abundant at markets and in stores all through late summer and throughout the winter months, depending on where you live. Massage for the best texture and change up the additions to suit what you have on hand (see below for some suggestions). The salad as written uses my everyday honey mustard vinaigrette.
If you have loads of chard – or other hardy greens – use it in fan favourite lentil patties with lots of greens, gardener’s friend swiss chard frittata, or this chickpea pumpkin curry. We grow a lot of chard and always need more ways to use it!
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Chard: use any type of chard, really, they’ll all work the same here. Most people call all varieties swiss chard, any apart from that, rainbow is most common, and it’s simply a mix of seeds in one package.
- Onion: this can be raw sweet onion, green onion, pickled onions, or any type you like. I made this recipe with vegetables from a friend’s farm and used a sweet early onion, pictured above.
- Fruit: this can be virtually any fruit you like, but it is key for that bit of sweetness. Apple, pear, stone fruit like peaches or nectarines, even dried cranberries or raisins (very good with cranberries), or pomegranate seeds.
- Nuts or seeds: think sunflower or pomegranate seeds, hazelnuts, walnuts, even cashews or other soft nuts. Toast them for an extra flavour boost.
- Vinaigrette: pictured is a mustard vinaigrette. You can use your favourite but use something that’s made with oil and vinegar rather than a creamy dressing.
Step by Step
Step 1: wash the chard well and chop roughly (omit stalks if you’d like). Add the vinaigrette.
Step 2: massage thoroughly until the greens have wilted down to about half the size.
Chard is much less bitter, and has a softer texture, compared to kale. This is especially true when comparing to curly kale. It’s somewhere in between kale and spinach in terms of flavour and sweetness.
If your salad is hard to chew, it simply needs to rest more to soften up.
How to Store
Keep the salad in a sealed container in the refrigerator for a couple of days. The texture of the greens won’t change much with storage, but if you know you’ll be refrigerating it, use a fruit that stores well after cutting.
- Use your hands: it’s key to massage properly, and that simply won’t work with a wooden spoon or tongs. Get in there with your hands – they’re your best tool in the kitchen.
- Give it time: this is a salad that benefits from a bit of a rest before serving. You can serve it immediately, but it’s also good to make an hour or so in advance.
- Omit the stems: they will make the salad quite crunchy and have a stronger green flavour. Leave them out and either toss them or pickle them.
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Swiss Chard Salad
- 450 grams swiss chard one bunch, washed well
- 100 ml honey mustard vinaigrette or other vinaigrette
- 1 small onion or shallot very thinly sliced
- 2 apples or other fruit* thinly sliced
- 50 grams seeds or nuts
- Roughly chop the chard, omitting the stems if preferred. Add to a large mixing bowl with the vinaigrette and use your hands to massage well. The greens will be wilted down to about half the size when they're ready.450 grams swiss chard, 100 ml honey mustard vinaigrette
- Add the onion, fruit, and seeds to the bowl. Transfer to a serving bowl if desired and either serve immediately or let the salad rest, covered, for 30-60 minutes before serving.1 small onion or shallot, 2 apples or other fruit*, 50 grams seeds or nuts
- This salad stores well. Keep it for 3-4 days in the refrigerator, covered. Add the fruit later if using a soft fruit (if you know you'll be storing it, dried fruit is a good choice).
* For American cup measurements, please click the pink link text above the ingredient list that says ‘American’.
Nutrition is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate. If this information is important to you, please have it verified independently.