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Kalyn's Kitchen

Baked Swiss Chard Stems with Olive Oil and Parmesan

If you have a garden that produces a lot of Swiss Chard, save the stems and make Baked Swiss Chard Stems with Olive Oil and Parmesan! This is a tasty idea that uses the part of the chard that usually gets thrown away! Use Side Dishes to see more tasty side dishes like this one.

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Baked Swiss Chard Stems with Olive Oil and Parmesan found on KalynsKitchen.com

This recipe for Baked Swiss Chard Stems with Olive Oil and Parmesan is the one I promised when I posted Swiss Chard and Mushroom Squares, and told everyone not to throw away their chard stems! I said that because I’d spotted this recipe in Vegetables Every Day, which is without a doubt one of the best cookbooks I’ve ever owned.

The cookbook version was Swiss Chard Stems with Butter and Parmesan, but I decided to substitute the butter for a slight misting of olive oil, and it still tasted wonderful. Of course use butter if you prefer!

I think it would take as many as three bunches of chard to come up with the pound of chard stems the original recipe calls for, but I used the stems from one bunch of chard which made about two servings (or in my case, a whole dinner because I ate the entire thing at one sitting.) If you like chard but haven’t stumbled on a good way to cook the stems, this is simple and delicious, and I love the idea that you’re making a side dish out of something that might get thrown away.

And if you read this good information about how nutritious chard is, you might decide it’s something you should be eating every week. Plus, if you’re a vegetable gardener, here’s an expert’s take on why you should be growing swiss chard. Swiss chard is also one of the most versatile ingredients you could ever ask for. And check out my Favorite Healthy Swiss Chard Recipes for more Swiss Chard ideas!

Baked Swiss Chard Stems with Olive Oil and Parmesan found on KalynsKitchen.com

Tips for Making Baked Swiss Chard Stems with Olive Oil and Parmesan:

(Scroll down for complete printable recipe, including nutritional information.)

  1. First, here’s a reminder of how to cut the chard leaves away from the stems. I think leaving a bit of leaf on the stem is fine; I actually liked the way it added some color to the stems.
  2. I cut the stems on the diagonal, cutting each chard stem into 3 or 4 pieces, with each piece about three inches long.
  3. Stems are parboiled in salted water for about six minutes, and drained well (didn’t get a photo of that step.)
  4. Then the stems are misted with olive oil and sprinkled with coarsely grated parmesan cheese. (Add some butter or replace olive oil with butter if you prefer.)
  5. Bake at 400 F for about 20 minutes. Yum!

More Ideas for Using Swiss Chard Stems:

Swiss Chard Leaves and Stems from Just Hungry
Swiss Chard Gratin from A Veggie Venture
Silverbeet Gratin from Green Gourmet Giraffe
Rainbow Chard Mushroom Sandwiches from One Hot Stove

Baked Swiss Chard Stems with Olive Oil and Parmesan found on KalynsKitchen.com

Baked Swiss Chard Stems with Olive Oil and Parmesan

Yield 2 servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 26 minutes
Total Time 31 minutes

This recipe for tasty Baked Swiss Chard Stems uses the part of the chard that usually gets thrown away!


  • 2 cups trimmed Swiss chard stems
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • olive oil for spraying pan and chard (see notes)
  • 1/4 cup coarsely grated parmesan cheese
  • coarse ground black pepper to taste


  1. Trim any discolored ends from chard stems, then cut stems on an angle into pieces about 3 inches long.
  2. If some stems are very thick, you may wish to cut them lengthwise so all pieces are approximately the same thickness.
  3. Preheat oven to 400F/200C.
  4. Bring a pot of water to a boil, add salt and chard stems and boil about 6 minutes.
  5. Let chard drain well.
  6. Spray a non-stick baking dish with olive oil.
  7. Place chard in the pan and mist lightly with olive oil, then sprinkle with cheese. (If doubling the recipe, make two layers, misting each layer with oil and sprinkling with cheese.)
  8. Bake about 20 minutes, or until chard is softened and cheese is slightly browned on the edges.
  9. Season with fresh ground black pepper if desired and serve hot.


You can use a little melted butter to drizzle over the chard instead of olive oil if you prefer. This recipe slightly adapted from Vegetables Every Day (affiliate link) by Jack Bishop.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 84Total Fat: 5.2gSaturated Fat: 1.5gUnsaturated Fat: 3.4gCholesterol: 5.4mgSodium: 493mgCarbohydrates: 6.7gFiber: 2.9gSugar: 1.5gProtein: 4.3g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.

If you make this recipe I'd love to hear how it turns out. Leave a star rating or share on social media with the hashtag #KALYNSKITCHEN, thanks!

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
This is a good side dish for any low-glycemic or low-carb diet. It might be a bit high in fat for the South Beach Diet, especially if you use butter, but I would eat it occasionally as a personal choice.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Diet Type Index to find recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You can also Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

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    43 Comments on “Baked Swiss Chard Stems with Olive Oil and Parmesan”

  1. Madeline, thanks for the feedback. I always love hearing from someone who tried the recipe and liked it! I totally loved this too!

  2. This recipe is so fantastic, I’ve already made it twice this week. We absolutely love it. My boyfriend said we should make this for our next dinner party, that’s how good it is!

  3. I love Swiss chard and so I´m delighted to find a new recipe. As usually thanks for sharing Kalyn.

  4. Just found your website – it’s wonderful! What an inspiration you are. The “south beach suggestions” are a nice extra bit of info.

  5. I could eat Swiss chard everyday and this dish reminds me a lot of one my grandmother used to make to prevent wasting food. Thanks for reminding me to make that dish again and I will use your recipe next time.

  6. Hi everyone,
    Fun hearing from people who might try this. Cynthia, the stems were not the least bit bitter. I did hear that Kale stems are very bitter though, so maybe that’s what you’re thinking of.

  7. fooIs the stem bitter?

  8. Swiss chard Stems…I’ll have to give it a try. My father always loved Swiss Chard and I’ll always avoided it.

    I’ve recently been to a restaurant that served a flash-fried swiss chard with olive oil and parm. It was amazing.

  9. And I just happen to have a big, beautiful bunch of Swiss chard in my fridge!

  10. Oooh, yes – definitely my kind of recipe!

  11. Hmmm… guess I’ll have to jump on the Swiss Chard bandwagon! Looks great, but I’ve never ever had it before. Love to try new things so thanks for sharing 🙂

  12. Kaly, what a delicious way to serve veggies – anything with parmesan has my undivided attention! 🙂

  13. I keep forgetting about swiss chard on my grocery list!
    Happy Valentine’s Day!

  14. I never throw away the stems; I usually just steam them with lemon juice and a bit of vinegar.

  15. What a wonderful idea – they look like cardoons!
    And anything with Parmesan and Olive oil has to be good!

  16. Chard stems are my favorite part. There are some European varieties of chard that are mostly stem, with attenuated leaves only.

    I don’t eat other stems (kale, ack!), but chard is a whole different ballgame.

  17. Very, very thoughtful as are the brussels sprouts and broccoli recipes.
    You have given a great deal of thought to healthy dishes. As my Doc told me, if your great grandmother did not serve it up, you should not either.

    Having worked in a French kitchen under a German chef forty years ago, this kind of cooking is so crisp and clear and healthy. I love it.

    All the best to you.

    Peace and Grace

  18. Happy Valentine’s Day, Kalyn!

  19. That’s a brilliant recipe Kalyn. I too love the idea of using an ingredient that might otherwise get thrown away. I’ll try this next time I get some chard. Not sure I can remember to eat it every week though!

  20. Thank you for the recipe. I use “greens” often but have never tried parboiling the stems before utilizing them in some manner. It amazes me how fibrous the stems are compared to the leafy greens.

    I look forward to checking all the links in your article for other great ideas!