Chard is a member of the beet family. However, unlike most beets, this vegetable is sought after for its large, crinkly green leaves — which have a hearty, yet mild spinach flavor — rather than its roots. While the Swiss chard stalk is white, other chard varieties have stalks that come in fun colors, including yellow, purple, or red. All chard varieties are rich in vitamins A, C, and K. Young chard leaves can be eaten raw in salads, but when chard matures, it tastes best steamed, boiled, roasted, sautéed, or in a stew – such as this Chard and White Bean Soup. Try this recipe to learn a new way to add chard to your menu.

Chard and Bean Soup – Packed with vegetables, this hearty comfort food is quick to fix and makes a perfect weekday dinner.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 1 stalk celery, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 (12-ounce) can organic fire-roasted crushed tomatoes
  • 4 cups organic, low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 to 3-1/2 cups cooked cannellini beans (or two 15-ounce cans organic cannellini beans)
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon Ground Veggie Blend, found at local supermarkets or online
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 pinch sugar (optional – to cut acidity)
  • 2 bundles Swiss or rainbow chard, cut into strips

Directions

Sauté onion, celery, and carrots in the olive oil. Once they are soft, add the garlic and cook for one minute. Add the crushed tomatoes, chicken broth, white beans, and all the spices. Bring to a boil for about 5 to 10 minutes with the lid on to release the flavors. Turn off the heat, incorporate chard, stir, cover, and wait about 3 to 5 minutes for the chard to cook.

Serves 6-8 people.

Have a great weekend!

Karen Alexander, MS, RDN, LD/N