Creamy Swiss Chard & Green Garlic Pasta

Picnik collage

Despite how obviously creamy and delicious this dish is, it's also healthy.
The recipe is slightly adapted from Smitten Kitchen, she seriously can't go wrong, and the creamed chard is made with mostly whole milk with a little bit of butter and flour as a thickener.

You can certainly have the creamed chard by itself or you can mix in pasta like I did.
I had planned on using orecchiette which I swore I had at home and if you are shopping for this dish I would suggest regular chard as opposed to the colorful variety.

Given the horrible light when the dish was ready I had planned on taking pretty pictures the next morning.
I set some of the creamed chard aside to mix with some orecchiete I would purchase and cook the next day.  Luckily I snapped a few shots of the pasta dish before we ate it because in the morning when I glanced into the fridge I noticed that my chard concoction had turned completely pink.

Like bright, pepto bismol pink with green chunks.  It wasn't pretty but it still tasted darn good.
This is why I suggest buying the regular swiss chard. 

Picnik collage

What started all this was the gorgeous chard and green garlic we received in our CSA box.

Green garlic is actually just young garlic (aka spring garlic) and you can see the garlic forming on the bottom.  Although it definitely has a garlic flavor, it's much milder than the traditional version.

If you don't have green garlic, which you mightn't, feel free to use spring onions, regular onions, green onions, leeks or a little of your regular garlic.  All of these options would be fantastic.

Picnik collage

Creamy Swiss Chard & Green Garlic Pasta

1 lbs Swiss Chard, thick stems removed and leaves sliced, then chopped
3 stalks of green garlic, sliced thinly (from bottom to tender part of the greens)
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (wheat or white)
1 3/4 cup whole milk
1/3 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 lb pasta of your choice
Salt and pepper to taste

Make sure your chard is chopped up well to avoid any long stringy bits that your little one can choke on.
Rinse the chard and place it, still wet, in a large pot over high heat.
Cover it and cook until just wilted, stirring occasionally.
Pour chard in a colander and allow it to cool.

Start cooking pasta of your choice.
I always reserve a little pasta water just in case I want to thin out the finished dish.

In a small bowl heat the milk over low-medium until warm throughout, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, wipe out your pot, place it back over medium heat and sauté the garlic in the butter until soft.
Add the flour, whisking constantly until thickened.  Make sure there are no lumps.
Add the milk in a steady stream, while whisking constantly until incorporated and the sauce has thickened.  Add the parmesan and mix until melted.
Squeeze any remaining water from the chard and mix it in to the sauce.
Taste and add salt and pepper if desired.

Combine the pasta and chard mixture and serve!

~This can certainly be placed in a food processor and blended to make a very tasty puree!


-Use any kind of pasta or mediterranean couscous
-Try this with greens like spinach or collard greens
-Add fresh herbs at the very end
-Use onions, garlic or leeks interchangeably

Refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months

Chard is an excellent source of calcium,  vitamin C, E, B6 & K, fiber, potassium, magnesium, iron, protein, zinc and folic acid.  So good for you.

Milk contains calcium, protein, potassium, phosphorus, vitamins D, B12 & A as well as riboflavin and niacin.


  1. I used to make something similar apart from using cream cheese, cheddar and spinach (which tastes a lot like swiss chard). I always thought a touch of nutmeg was the natural perfect partner for it, have you tried that?

  2. I just made this for my (picky) 14 month old daughter and she scarfed it up!! Thanks so much for the recipe.

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