Chard Salad with Garlic Breadcrumbs and Parmesan

November 10, 2013
10 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Serves 4 as a starter
Author Notes

Inspired by a salad my husband and I shared at one of our favorite local restaurants, Stone Park Cafe, this is a bright, grassy tangle of chard, tossed with coarse, fresh breadcrumbs crisped with just a whisper of garlic in a generous amount of olive oil. A lemon dressing and a good sprinkling of Parmesan cheese gave it brightness and depth. —Merrill Stubbs

What You'll Need
  • 1 bunch Swiss chard
  • 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan
  1. Wash and dry the chard and remove the stems from the leaves. Set aside. Zest and juice the lemon.
  2. Combine the lemon juice (you should have about 2 1/2 tablespoons), 1 teaspoon of the lemon zest and a few generous pinches of salt in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in 1/4 cup of the olive oil. Set aside.
  3. Warm the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil in a small, heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the breadcrumbs and cook, stirring frequently, until they are crisp and golden brown (about 5 minutes). Be careful not to burn them! Stir in the garlic and let them toast for another minute, then remove from the heat.
  4. Separate the chard leaves from their stems. Finely chop the stems. Stack a few of the leaves on top of each other, roll them like a cigar and cut the cigar into thin (1/8-inch) ribbons. Repeat until all the leaves are shredded. Put the chard stems and leaves into a large bowl and toss gently with the Parmesan and about 2/3 of the lemon dressing. Taste and add more dressing if you like. Toss in the toasted breadcrumbs and serve immediately.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Cheryl
  • LisaD
  • kzmccaff
  • Teri Gentry
    Teri Gentry
  • Darlene

23 Reviews

Cheryl December 19, 2016
Delicious. I made it vegan by just using a little bit of vegan parmesan. Loved the dressing. Can't wait to have more.
Kendra March 28, 2016
9 times out of 10, when I have chard in my fridge this is what I make. I love it!
LisaD October 5, 2015
I made my breadcrumbs with leftover bacon fat the second time I made this. Yum.
kzmccaff July 8, 2015
This was great! I also love this salad with Kale. I too used some walnuts and they were a great addition.
Teri G. January 30, 2015
lauriw January 20, 2015
Fantastic! I followed the recipe, as is, minus adding the cubed stems. I'm not a greens-person but this was great- and easy.
Darlene October 27, 2014
I added some toasted walnuts because from the picture, I thought I saw walnuts and was surprised they weren't on the ingredient list. Once I had the idea in my mind, I couldn't let it go! I made the mistake of adding some of the parmesan to the toasted crumbs while the crumbs were still warm and the cheese of course melted, but it ended up being delicious anyway. We kind of crumbled the crispy bread/cheese combo over the salad - a happy accident :-)
Tamara D. October 21, 2014
I made this tonight. Surprisingly good! The swiss chard in our garden is prolific this year, so I thought I'd give it a try. Delicious!!
Alexandra S. August 5, 2014
This was so delicious! I made it tonight, and my husband took one bite, and said, Wow. Those breadcrumbs are irresistible, and the whole combination of lemon and parmesan is just delectable. I had never enjoyed Swiss chard raw before making this salad, but I will be preparing it this way again and again this summer and fall as the bundles from CSA keep coming and coming. Thank you!
EmilyC June 6, 2014
I adore this salad! So simple to prepare, so bold in flavor. To be honest, I've never been a huge fan of Swiss chard (despite trying numerous preparations of it) and got to the point where I'd just bypass it at the market. But along came this salad! Not only is this my favorite way to eat chard, but it's such a welcome change from kale. This is a new favorite. Thank you!
Merrill S. June 6, 2014
So glad to hear this!
Dimply D. January 20, 2014
So this might just be the best salad I've made in a few years. Really simple and simply excellent! Would not change a thing. Other greens like kale, spinach, etc. would lend themselves nicely. I checked on the oxalic acid issue posted by a previous reviewer and it seems to me unless you're eating raw greens high in oxalic acid everyday or for every meal, calcium absorption is not a problem. This did not burn my throat or cause any issues for any of us that ate it. I'm sending this little gem to everyone.
Merrill S. January 20, 2014
Thanks for your lovely comment, and so glad you liked it! And good to know about the oxalic acid issue...
Gibb T. October 17, 2018
Breadcrumbs or croutons? Where to get those in Brooklyn? Thx!
Boomdog02 January 16, 2014
I made this the other night for myself, wife and a picky teenager...RAVE reviews all around. One change I made was that instead of making the bread crumbs I used some home made herbed croutons which I pulsed until ground in my processor. I also added a teaspoon of honey to the dressing. Incredibly yummy!!! In the words of my daughter..."a keeper"!
sara D. January 3, 2014
I have not tried this, but I am really surprised to see a RAW chard recipe. I grow chard, and love it, but it is SO high in oxalic acids that it BURNS BURNS BURNS my throat when eaten raw. Also, since many people eat leafy greens for their high calcium content, it's worth noting that oxalic acid binds to calcium in the intestines and kidneys, not only making calcium less "absorb-able" but contributing to the formation of damaging kidney stones.
healthierkitchen December 13, 2013
so, so good! I did cut back the olive oil a little and did have some extra bread crumbs which is good because I could eat this everyday!
procrastibaker December 11, 2013
This was so good that my boyfriend volunteered to go out and get more chard so we could have it again tonight. We're going to try it without the cheese (watching the waistlines during holiday party madness), but as he said, "You could put these breadcrumbs on virtually anything, and I would eat it."
MariahK November 29, 2013
really good salad! loved the acidity paired with creamy pasta.
AmandaO November 24, 2013
This was so easy and delicious. Served without the cheese to make it vegan friendly and it was amazing.
I was cooking for a crowd, so used panko breadcrumbs. Doubled it, and 8 of us ate it all.
bridgetbakes November 15, 2013
made this with dinner tonight - delicious !! a keeper :)
JosieD November 14, 2013
Just made this for dinner tonight-- so good! I rarely follow salad recipes, but I sure am glad I tried this one. Our toddler was digging out the croutons and the rest of us were gobbling it up. I'm looking forward to making it again tomorrow! Great winter salad.
cratecooking November 12, 2013
So simple, looks delicious!