How Long to Cook Swiss Chard: Tips for Perfectly Tender Greens

Swiss chard is a leafy green vegetable that is loaded with essential vitamins and minerals. It is a versatile vegetable that can be used in various dishes, including salads, stir-fry, and soups. If you are wondering how long to cook Swiss chard, this article is for you. Here, we will provide you with some handy tips for perfectly tender greens.

Preparing Swiss Chard

The first step in cooking Swiss chard is preparing it. Proper preparation is essential for getting the best-tasting and perfectly cooked Swiss chard. Here are the steps you need to follow to prepare Swiss chard:

  • Wash the Swiss chard thoroughly with cold water to remove any dirt or debris.
  • Break off the tough stems at the bottom of the leaves.
  • Cut the leaves into bite-sized pieces.
  • If you want, you can also chop the stems and use them in your recipe.

Boiling Swiss Chard

Boiling is one of the best methods to cook Swiss chard. It is easy and does not require any particular cooking skills. Here’s how you can boil Swiss chard:

  1. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.
  2. Add the Swiss chard leaves to the pot.
  3. Cook for about 2-3 minutes or until the leaves are wilted.
  4. Drain the Swiss chard and squeeze out any excess water before using in your recipe.

Braising Swiss Chard

Braising is another method that can be used to cook Swiss chard. It involves cooking it with a small amount of liquid at low heat for a longer time. This helps to retain the nutrients in Swiss chard while giving it a delicious flavor. Here’s how you can braise Swiss chard:

  1. Heat a pan over medium heat and add some oil.
  2. Add the Swiss chard leaves and stems to the pan.
  3. Season with salt and pepper and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add a splash of water, cover the pan with a lid, and cook for about 10-15 minutes or until the Swiss chard is tender.

Sautéing Swiss Chard

Sautéing Swiss chard is a quick and easy method that is perfect for busy weeknights. It involves cooking the Swiss chard in a pan with some oil and seasoning. Here’s how you can sauté Swiss chard:

  1. Heat a pan over medium heat and add some oil.
  2. Add the Swiss chard leaves and stems to the pan.
  3. Season with salt and pepper and cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Remove from heat and use in your recipe.

Tips for Perfectly Tender Swiss Chard

To get perfectly tender Swiss chard, here are some tips you should consider:

Cook the stems first

The stems of Swiss chard usually take longer to cook than the leaves. To ensure that they are perfectly cooked, cook them first before adding the leaves.

Use a lot of water

Swiss chard can absorb a lot of water, especially when boiling. To prevent it from turning soggy, use a large pot and a lot of water when boiling. This allows the Swiss chard to cook evenly and quickly.

Season well

Swiss chard has a mild taste, so it is essential to season it well. Use garlic, lemon, salt, pepper, or any other seasoning of your choice to enhance the taste of Swiss chard.

Don’t overcook

Swiss chard is naturally tender and does not require a lot of cooking time. Overcooking can make it mushy and unappetizing. Cook Swiss chard only until it is wilted or tender, depending on the cooking method you are using.


Swiss chard is easy to cook and is a great addition to any dish. Whether you are boiling, braising, or sautéing, with the tips provided in this article, you can get perfectly cooked Swiss chard every time. Follow these tips, experiment with different cooking methods and enjoy the goodness of Swiss chard.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Here are some common questions and their answers related to cooking Swiss chard:

  • Can you eat Swiss chard raw? Yes, Swiss chard can be eaten raw. However, it is usually cooked before adding it to dishes.
  • How long does it take to boil Swiss chard? It takes about 2-3 minutes to boil Swiss chard.
  • Can you eat the stems of Swiss chard? Yes, the stems of Swiss chard are edible and can be cooked and eaten.
  • How do you store Swiss chard? Store Swiss chard in the refrigerator in a plastic bag for up to 5-7 days.
  • Is Swiss chard good for you? Yes, Swiss chard is loaded with essential vitamins and minerals and is a healthy addition to any diet.


1. FoodData Central. (n.d.). Swiss chard. Retrieved 7 September 2021, from

2. The Kitchn. (2021). A Simple Guide to Cooking Perfect Swiss Chard. Retrieved 7 September 2021, from

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