Swiss Chard


PRIMARY MICRO NUTRIENTS Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Magnesium, Potassium, Iron, Manganese, Copper
SECONDARY MICRO NUTRIENTS Vitamin B2, B6, Folate, Calcium, Phosphorus
  • Highly nutrient density
  • High Carotene and Chlorophyll content
  • Bone health – due to Vitamin K
  • Carotenes – anticancer, especially digestive cancer (e.g. colon)
  • Chlorophyll
    • Stimulates hemoglobin, production of red blood cells, prevents excessive menstrual blood flow, very similar to Heme portion of red blood cells
    • Anti-cancer and anti-oxidant effects
    • Astringent – stimulate wound healing, especially of skin and GI tract
PLANT FAMILY Chenopodiaceae. Related to: Beets, Spinach, Swiss Chard
DANGERS High amounts oxalate: calcium binding and kidney stones

The Nutrient-Rich Way of Cooking Swiss Chard

Try boiling Swiss chard as this brings out a sweeter taste from the chard (by freeing up acids and allowing them to leach into the boiling water). Discard the boiling water after cooking.

Quick boiling follows three basic cooking guidelines that are generally associated in food science research with improved nutrient retention. These three guidelines are: (1) minimal necessary heat exposure; (2) minimal necessary cooking duration; (3) minimal necessary food surface contact with cooking liquid.

Use a large pot (3 quart) with lots of water and bring to a rapid boil. Add chard to the boiling water. If stems are more than 1-inch wide, cook them for 2 minutes before adding the leaves. If less than 1 inch in width you can boil the leaves and stems together for 3 minutes. Begin timing as soon as you place the chard in the pot if you are using 1 pound or less of chard. If you are cooking large quantities of chard bring the water back to a boil before beginning timing the 3 minutes. Do not cover the pot when cooking chard. Leaving the pot uncovered helps to release more of the acids with the rising steam.

Remove Swiss chard from pot, press out liquid with a fork, place in a bowl, toss with our Mediterranean Dressing, and top with your favourite optional ingredients.

RDA Chard, swiss, raw % RDA
Nutrient Unit per 100g
Water g 3700 92.66 2.5%
Energy kcal 2600 19 0.7%
Protein g 90 1.8 2.0%
Total lipid (fat) g 87 0.2 0.2%
Carbohydrate, by difference g 224 3.74 1.7%
Fiber, total dietary g 38 1.6 4.2%
Sugars, total g 1.1
Calcium, Ca mg 1000 51 5.1%
Iron, Fe mg 8 1.8 22.5%
Magnesium, Mg mg 420 81 19.3%
Phosphorus, P mg 700 46 6.6%
Potassium, K mg 470 379 80.6%
Sodium, Na mg 213
Zinc, Zn mg 11 0.36 3.3%
Copper, Cu mg 0.9 0.179 19.9%
Manganese, Mn mg 2.3 0.366 15.9%
Selenium, Se µg 55 0.9 1.6%
Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid mg 90 30 33.3%
Thiamin mg 1.2 0.04 3.3%
Riboflavin mg 1.3 0.09 6.9%
Niacin mg 16 0.4 2.5%
Pantothenic acid mg 5 0.172 3.4%
Vitamin B-6 mg 1.7 0.099 5.8%
Folate, total µg 400 14 3.5%
Choline, total mg 18
Betaine mg 0.3
Vitamin B-12 µg 2.4 0 0.0%
Vitamin A, RAE mcg 900 305.8 34%
Vitamin E, total mg 15 1.89 12.6%
Vitamin D IU 600 0 0.0%
Vitamin K (phylloquinone) µg 120 830 691.7%

RDA – Recommended Dietary Amount recommendations are based upon calculations for a 40 year old very active man that I have adapted from USDA’s Dietary Intake Guidelines. Using this link you can make your own calculations

Adapted from:

Murray, M. (2005). Encyclopedia of Healing Food. New York, N.Y.: Atria Books

USDA food database:

Other information sources:

World’s Healthiest Foods – an excellent online food and nutrition encyclopedia

Self Nutrition Data: an online nutrient breakdown of foods

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