creamed chard and spring onions

My fridge is a mess. I like to fancy myself a focused shopper; I know what I want to cook, I carefully make lists of the ingredients I don’t have yet and I don’t come home until every item is crossed off.

spring onions, rainy day

Eh, hold on a moment because somewhere on the other side of a computer screen, my husband just snorted coffee through his nose. Look, I aim to be a focused, efficient shopper, I really do! It’s just that often the gap between my aspirations (look at my to-do list, and all of those little check marks!) and my reality (oh, we’re out of milk, eggs and flour? I thought I’d checked!) is big. And filled with a husband, who often gets relayed to a store because I’d forgotten one little thing.

ribbons of chard

Nevertheless, my fridge is a mess of my own making. Unable to find half the things I’ve been hoping to at the market lately, I’ve been walking away with random pretties that I have no immediate plans for, and on Thursday, it was time to stage an intervention or Let Good Food Go To Waste, which as you all know, is an unforgivable offense. And so I did what I too rarely do, which is throw some stuff together and see where it takes me, in this case, to a warmer weather version of creamed spinach, with chard and spring onions. Except, I got the math a little wrong and ended up with too creamy greens (woe is me!) and used some pasta and Parmesan to distribute the extra and lo and behold, I had made a most delicious lunch. I really should do this more often.

spring onions, concentrics

So this is a recipe for those of you who ask about the kinds of things I throw together from what is in front of me; I am not going to make any all-cap demands that you Make This Right Now, I don’t believe I’ve reinvented greens and pasta, but I liked this. It was filling and indulgent, yet far enough from the mac-and-cheese line that I could pass it off as a weekday lunch. And most importantly, I’m clearing space in the fridge for my next big idea, which had better involve carrots as I might have gone overboard buying them once I discovered a certain tot’s propensity toward them.

creamed chard and spring onion pasta

Next up: I’m debating working through my cooking (and fridge/pantry) backlog with daily posts this week. Someone please talk me out of it?

One year ago: Buttermilk Ice Cream
Two years ago: Cauliflower, Bean and Feta Salad
Three years ago: Margarita Cookies

Creamed Chard and Spring Onions
Adapted from my Creamed Spinach

You can swap cream or half and half for all or a portion of the milk, if you want this to be extra lush. You could also stir in a few tablespoons of grated Parmesan. I won’t tell.

1 1-pound bunch Swiss chard, thick stems removed and leaves sliced into ribbons
3 spring onions, ends trimmed, white and some green parts sliced into thin coins
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups milk
Salt and pepper

Wash your chard, but no need to dry it, just place it in a large pot over high heat. Cook, covered, with just the water clinging to leaves, stirring occasionally, until wilted, about 6 minutes.

Press or squeeze out the excess liquid any number of ways, either by wringing it out in cheesecloth (my favorite method), putting it in a mesh strainer and pressing the moisture out with a spatula or large spoon or letting it cool long enough to grab small handfuls and squeezing them to remove as much water as possible.

Wipe out the large pot so you can use it again. Heat milk or cream in a small saucepan over moderate heat, stirring, until warm. Keep warm. Meanwhile, cook onion and garlic, if using, in butter in your wiped-out large pot over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about six minutes. Whisk in flour and cook roux, whisking, about three minutes. Add warm milk or cream in a slow stream, whisking constantly to prevent lumps, and simmer, whisking, until thickened, three to four minutes. Stir in chard, then salt and pepper to taste and cook, stirring, until heated through.

To make Creamed Chard and Spring Onion Pasta: Use 1 3/4 cups of milk instead of 1 1/4 cups. Stir 1/4 cup finely grated parmesan into the sauce while cooking, and keep extra on hand for serving. This should be enough to toss with about half a pound of pasta (more or less depending on how saucy you like yours).

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196 comments on creamed chard and spring onions

  1. Katherine

    We have a dry erase list on the fridge of food that goes bad. We have to, since we’re CSA members too! It helps keep yummy items from getting lost in the fridge. So sad when you forget something delicious is there until it is too late!

  2. Deb, haha you sound like my mom and I!

    Great post!

    Also, I read your tweet earlier today on the Nutella crisis at Whole Foods. Did you get any Nutella, or do you still need some? I have a stash (I mean a STASH!) of the stuff. I could send you a jar or two, if you’d like…

  3. Ohhh these look delish!.. I am the same way, always plan ahead and have my check lists so I don’t end up wasting a lot of food that I randomly start buying in the super market!.. Delicious recipe!!

  4. Hey Deb, I have a friend who recently became a vegetarian and also gets farm fresh produce shipments. He’s been getting kohlrabi greens and kale quite often. Do you think you could use these instead?

  5. I’m not about to talk you out of posting daily. I had a two week stint of day after day posts and it was fun and exhausting. Plus I’ve been feeling completely uninspired to find something new to make for dinner every night so I could use inspiration from you!

  6. jen

    Please, please do something with carrots. I too overbought this week (I got .05/gallon fuel discount for buying the 5 lb. bag) and would love some new ideas.

  7. Haha, I totally have a detailed shopping list in my pocket right now, with ingredients for 2-3 healthy, delicious-looking recipes, ready for my stop at the grocery store on my way home today. We’ll see if they actually get made into meals this week.

  8. post daily and your ability to balance motherly/work-ly duties will send me into a severe jealousy-studded depression. the upside, i’ll have approximately five new things to try in the cocina.

    p.s. i think toasted bread crumbs on the top of this pasta would be divine. slurp.

  9. At least we reap the benefits of your fridge chaos by getting a great recipe ;-) Honestly, yours couldn’t be worse then mine, not to speak of my shelf in the pantry overloaded with stuff which frequently falls off, much to the annoyance of my flatmate. I just love greens and this looks amazing.

  10. The Tutugirl

    Oh man. Its like you knew students were having exams this week, and needed comfort food. I can’t wait to make this!

    And I fully support daily posts. Something to look forward to!

    1. deb

      Amanda — This is adapted from my creamed spinach recipe… just follow the link under the recipe title.

      kamran — Thanks! I can get it around here, I just have a real hangup about spurious claims to healthier-than-thou-ness, i.e. the idea that Nutella = gross and unnatural but organic package cookies with a gazillion sketchy sounding ingredients = acceptable. Anyway, I bought an all-natural Nutella but it doesn’t taste as hazelnutty and is not as smooth. We’ll endure. :)

  11. Well this has turned out to be a ‘Deb’ kinda day! Started my day w/creamed spinach on your Jalapeno scones with a poached egg on top, add a teensy bit of grated Parm and can we say, ‘oh my’?! BUT I did have leftover creamed spinach, so guess what I’m going to be making??? Another terrific recipe and I too, vote for the fridge/pantry experiment as I too, have a messy fridge and pantry!

  12. Kathy in St. Louis

    Don’t make yourself a slave to posting daily, Deb; just be diligent about finding smart, thrifty, tasty, semi-nutritious uses for your pantry and fridge abundance. That’s what I would do.

    But, if you’re bent on posting daily, perhaps one or two days could focus on the small, simple ways you use up small amounts of things. This is a skill many of us who hate to waste food don’t learn except through experience, and damn if it doesn’t make us feel as though we’re pulling off the biggest trick ever. For instance, we bought several beautiful zucchini last week, but weren’t using them quickly; I turned two of them into zucchini bread from one of Heidi’s (101cookbooks) recipes. One loaf went into the freezer for sharing, and we’re slowly eating the other. Another example: our remaining cilantro is slowly dying and our two pounds of green beans are giving me the evil eye, so I’m eyeing an Epicurious preparation for green beans with cilantro and garlic. Plus, I have a small knob of Pecorino left, so I might grate that over the finished beans (or the burgers we’re going to grill tonight to go along with the beans).

    Anyhow, enough advising. Looking forward to seeing where your adventure leads.

  13. Priya

    DAILY POSTS!?!!? OH JOY!!!!! What a wonderful week!

    Btw, I made you spinach quiche a couple of days ago. It was to die for. I think I’ve been dreaming about it…

  14. linda

    the pressure to post a daily blog is:
    doesn’t sound like “fun” or “happy” (& that is what your posts usually are!)

    will daily posting this week:
    make you smile?
    will you be relaxed?

    i say re-arrange the frig ie: expiration dates/ freshness of produce &
    cook up a big batch of carrots that sweet jacob enjoys!

  15. Melissa

    You found swiss chard at the farmer’s market here in NYC? And spring onions already? My tiny little farmers market at brooklyn’s borough hall only has collards and kale right now. Which market are you going to?

    1. deb

      Melissa — Union Square. The chard was from Whole Foods, but I have seen a lot of spinach at the market so it seems that chard shouldn’t be too far behind.

    1. deb

      rose — I do, I mean, I am. I’m thinking about starting a side blog with baby food recipes. (I use the term “recipes” loosely; we’re not doing anything fancy yet!). I’ll keep you all posted if I do.

  16. Jean Marie

    Do you open your mouth when Jacob does? I did that with my boys and simply could not control it. The recipe looks wonderful and will be put to good use when the CSA box has chard and spring onions which should be very soon.

  17. I have never creamed swish chard but I absolutely LOVE eating it! I am plating some at the back of my herb garden tomorrow! It is so prolific that once planted here in VA it will actually keep coming back for years if you keep cutting and using it!
    Thanks for another way to make it!

  18. Mississippi Cook

    Can’t wait to try the pasta recipe, Deb… but with grits instead of pasta. I’ve been looking for a healthier alternative to grits ‘n greens! (The greens in the latter case being collards or turnip greens that have simmered with a half a pound of salt pork and two ham hocks for 3 hours, which my husband – a Yankee, ironically, in a move so mind-blowingly southern I only encountered it once in my pre-married lifetime – frequently mixes with his grits.)

    Also, my #1 wasted ingredient? Carrots. Due to the abundance of recipes that require 1-2 carrots, as well as the fact that I find raw carrots absolutely vile, rotten carrots are basically always in the fridge. (Celery is a similar case, especially if you cook a lot of gumbo and sauce piquante, which I do.) You can only make so much stock, and the standard honey-buttered carrots get old quick. So a post involving the use of several carrots would be awesome!

  19. I was just going out to “prune” our chard which has shot up to over 4 feet tall when I saw your tweet for this recipe! Nice coincidence. Going into the jungle now…hope I make it back out…

  20. I could have written this post! I am forever composing a shopping list, but my husband inevitably has to take a trip to the grocery store once a week for some forgotten item (this week it was eggs and cream cheese). The creamed chard looks great! I love when experimental recipes turn out well.

  21. always have this conundrum – using up leftover used-to-be-so-pretty produce. Recently saw a recipe for cabbage braised in cream, this reminds me of that. Sounds delish.

  22. I was in a place of thinking “if I get ONE MORE butternut squash in my every-other week CSA box I will scream” not too long ago. My husband said the same of chard several days ago. The tough side of the eating locally and seasonally coin, eh?

    I really enjoyed our creamed greens at Passover. Love the spring onion concept! Comfort spring food. Well done!

  23. I had a recent clean out the cabinets binge, lest the pretty spring veggies catch me harboring those shameful canned goods. Got a decent black bean burger out of it. I’m pretty good with using veggies in the fridge, but I’m criminal when it comes to herbs, I’ve thrown out bags of them. At lease soon I’ll be growing my own!

  24. Susan

    How lucky you have Alex to run to the store for you. How often do I start cooking and realize I forgot a crucial ingredient. I am so bad about making lists. Or reading them if I do make them. And I cook for clients so it’s really bad.

  25. Cris

    I think you have the most generous readers, all concerned about you, and how you feel, and whether you would get tired posting daily.

    Frankly, I don’t care about that. I am all for the daily posting. I love your recipes and would be thrilled to see a new one daily for as long as you can manage it. Post on, Deb! Post on!

    1. deb

      Susan — Alex is a manager, you see. He manages projects, thus when I’m mid-recipe and oopsineedmoreeggs! the manager in him rationalizes that the “project” would be taken further off course if the primary (the chef) were to step out rather than an assistant (himself). You’d think I’m joking, but he really thinks like this. Fortunately, we’ve got a killer bodega blocks from here, so it’s never a big deal to get more basics. We are all spoiled.

      Cris — Bah! I thought they were being awfully nice too.

      Carrots — I have to say, my absolutely favorite carrots recipe (besides roasting them) is David Lebovitz’s shredded carrots salad (salade de carottes rapees, plus a few accents), over here. So simple! Maybe I’ll steal it over here soon…

  26. Melody C

    Yum, I like how your “I need to clean the fridge” experiments turn out!! This looks like a fantastic planned-accident! Keep going and see what else you dig out of the back of the pantry or fridge.

  27. Susan

    Well, I’m up for you to clean out your backlog, unless you have an upcoming trip where you might want to use them while you’re away! I’m always ready for more when you post simpler recipes, the ones where science isn’t an issue and that I can cook right away. Salad recipes and this recipe, are straight forward and easy. It’s the recipes where precision or technique is key (baking) that I might need more ‘up’ time for answers to questions. Of course, I know you are aware of the trends..

  28. Yum! We’re not big on creamed greens here in Oz, but add pasta and you have a whole new story!
    And I happen to have a very sad looking bunch of spinach in the fridge that needed inspiration.

  29. For the record, when I said earlier that I would encourage you to post daily this week, I was under the impression that part/all of it would be in your backlog. I don’t want you to kill yourself cooking and posting and doing mom duties–I’m just really curious about what you’ve got up your sleeves!

    Now if you don’t mind, I’m going to go make your caramel pudding. =)

  30. jenniegirl

    No way am I going to talk you out of the daily posts…I’m a teacher, and after I get the little nerdnicks off to gym/or music/or whatever whatever I have my PREP…the glorious time when I get to finally run to the bathroom, get my morning coffee that I forgot in my rush, and then after looking both ways, I check to see if there’s something new on your site. Such a geek…I know. Your snickerdoodle recipe changed my life.

  31. My goal is to be a focused shopper too. Just like you, I shop until all my ingredients are crossed off my list. My issue is that intentions of what I am going to prepare seemed to exceed my energy level by mid-week. I am working on shopping more frequently and purchasing only what I need for 1-2 days, and only what’s on my list.

    The swiss chard looks divine!

  32. Jill

    When we lived in West Palm Beach, FL, there was a couple that sold the most amazing produce at the Green Market. The woman recommended that we saute the chard with some onions and serve over pasta. We added clams. We ate this every week of every year that chard was in season. Yummy.

  33. Oh, I’m so glad I’m not alone! I have so many good intentions when I go shopping/meal planning then life gets in the way and viola, limp veg, dried up or nearly slimy herbs, etc. Sometimes I just make “garbage soup” to save them. I can’t stand it when food goes to waste…

    Often the impromtu turns out to be some of the best meals made!

  34. I’m not a big fan of chard, but this looks pretty good. We make a similar recipe with zucchini, but I might give this one a try! The best food comes from throwing together what is left in the fridge!

  35. Looks lovely! I know what you mean about shopping, picking up little goodies and that then need to be used before they are wasted..I try very hard to make sure that my refrigerator is NOT the place where good food goes to die. Some weeks are better than others. Thanks for the “make what you’ve got” inspiration.

  36. Alisha

    Yum, yum aaaaaand yum! My vote goes for daily posts too. Every day I click on the SK icon I’ve saved, just to see if there’s something new and incredible and irresistable. 6 days out of the week I’m disappointed. I honestly don’t know if you post every Sunday? I kind of enjoy wallowing in the desperation of NEEDING another of your recipes NOW. So yes … Post on!
    That being said, I covet a Coconut Curry Carrot soup and if you would like the recipe, I’d be happy to share. Its adaptable to taste and uses a bag of carrots. 9 or 10 carrots usually does the trick! Awesome way to dispose of “not long for this world” carrots.

  37. This is a fascinating recipe for me on many levels. Firstly, I have never eaten chard before, possibly because it’s a rare thing in Asia. Secondly, I only ever had creamed corn once and loved it, so creamed chard? MMMM, I might just enjoy it too!

  38. Nelly

    I’m licking the ‘puter screen (as usual) and I’m going to use baby bok choy as I have no chard, can’t wait for tomorrow’s lunch, thanks!
    Alisha, I’d like your carrot curry recipe please :-)))

  39. RicaSuave521

    what??? no nutmeg??? you can’t have creamed spinach / chard / greens without a grating of nutmeg!! or at the very least a squeeze of half a lemon … (otherwise, it’s too creamy)

  40. No, I’m not here to talk you out of it. Go go go! Looking forward to the insanity of daily food blogging :)
    By the way, I was yesterday at Le Pain Quotidien in Amsterdam, yes Holland, and I bought the most delicious Nutella wanna-be ever! Noisella, with Belgian chocolate and hazelnut. I’m a huge fan of Nutella and I can attest to the fact that this might even be better and its organic. Love it!!

  41. Love the idea of creamed Swiss chard…it will help take away some of the bite. Daily posts! Oh, wow! You are a brave soul. I just discovered over the weekend enough rice and pasta (in all sizes and flavors!) to make a dish every day for a month. I, would, however, be totally crazed! Good luck with the daily blogging. I look forward to seeing your recipes!

  42. Louise

    Ooh, the threat of daily posts is dangerous indeed! Please do. I have never thought of putting creamed spinach over pasta, I usually just send my husband back to the store for me!

  43. Cilantro

    This looks great–I *will* be trying it.

    On another subject, watch that carrot thing. My daughter, 32 now, went bonkers for carrots at your son’s age. I overdid it a tad, and today nary a carrot will cross her lips. She blames me.

  44. Kristin

    What about a carrot, ginger, curry soup? Carrot cake with pineapple? Roasted carrots with white wine, lemon zest, and fresh thyme? Make a couple batches of stock? Carrot latkes? I’ve also found food gifts to neighbors always goes over well. You empty your fridge, get to cook, AND help keep neighborhood in a state of food induced bliss *especially important when BBQ season is now and everyone is outside being rowdy/disturbing the peace more often*.

  45. Travels4Food

    I’d love to make this but am gluten-free these days. Anyone posting have any suggestions? Will simple rice flour work, or is it too grainy?

  46. This looks delicious! What is it about cream with leafy greens? I recently tried out Nigel Slater’s “contemporary” creamed spinach, which was easy and very tasty (which actually uses creme fraiche). I think your recipe here would stay warmer longer, since there is more cream.

  47. I dream of being able to throw together a recipe that works. I feel like I rely on them entirely too much. But whenever I try to go it alone, I just feel like it never turns out. Adapting recipes, I am good at; but coming up with them completely on my own? Not so much. I envy you so much for being able to do this!

  48. Jean

    Looks very yummy.
    A potato ricer works beautifully at wringing out spinach and other greens if you happen to have one. I like it better than the cloth as it’s easier to clean.

  49. Mmmm, yum. This looks delicious and creamy. I love throwing together recipes from random leftovers. When we had a permanent home, we used to make Thursday our “clean out the refrigerator night” and we would make dinner with whatever we had left and then go grocery shopping on Saturday.

    Carrots are the one thing in my refrigerator that I never leave behind because I am madly in love with roasted carrots and grilled carrots. I’m with Cris – daily posts, yay!

  50. Nicole

    I love carrots! We get them in great big bunches from my CSA. My favorite things to do with them (besides just munching on raw ones) are all stovetop-based: julienned and cooked with butter, ginger, soy sauce and almonds; sliced on the bias, boiled until soft, then tossed with butter and dill; sliced into coins and slow-cooked in butter until they’re soft, just browning and sweet; and julienned and swapped for half the zucchini in your quick zucchini saute (I also replace the almonds with hazelnuts, and sometimes the oil with butter – I really like carrots and butter together).

    1. Audrey

      Wash your Swiss chard in hot water, it makes sure all the grit is gone. Pull the green bits off and chop up the ribs, sauté them till tender then add the green parts and cook till tender. No need to cook in water.

  51. britta

    I vote for a side baby food blog. Maybe even just a link on this website to start? While I don’t have a baby (not yet anyway), I’ve always been curious about what you can do besides just pureeing carrots.

  52. Tamara

    Deb–You rule. Please don’t exhaust yourself–even an every-other-day posting that explains how to clean out the crap (oh, I mean Good Food that Might Go to Waste) in our fridges would be so very helpful.

    @ Nicole: THANKS for the carrot recipes.

    Deb: Celery recipes? These are the things that always rot in my fridge–carrots and celery. You’d think the celery wouldn’t because I substitute them for onions (we don’t get along, onions and me), but there is always at least half an entire…what do you call a group of celery stalks???

    Thanks for the blog–my all-time fav.

  53. As a fellow list maker and planner of meals (with a teen who gets sent to the local store weekly for “one more thing”), I admit that all bets are off once the local farm stands open up. I buy whatever looks lucious, then figure out the rest as I go. Love your work in repurposing a proven recipe with new ingredients.

  54. JJ

    I grow chard in my winter garden, although for any East Coast gardeners it can be grown in the summertime garden as well. I use it exactly like I would use spinach. I made this dish last night. It was lovely.

  55. This sounds pretty tasty.

    I made the lime cake (only as lemon) this week and it was a huge hit. I made lemon curd and turned it into a 2 layer cake with a lemon cream cheese frosting (without confectioners sugar).

  56. L

    Wow!!! I JUST looked in the fridge this morning and discovered both chard and spring onions that I have yet to use! This will be on the menu for tonight!

    BTW, I have been reading for a long time but haven’t yet commented – and I just want to say, I want to be you. You are awesome!

  57. Tracey

    Perfect! I get so much kale and chard in my CSA, and I was getting kinda sick of just eating sauteed with garlic. (Besides, anything with cream and cheese must be good…). Thanks!

  58. Carrots! I, too, have a youngster (a bit older than yours) who loves carrots – only she demands more flavor than just the carrots. So, I make a mashed carrot salad that can be paired with an almond, cumin and toasted coconut topping (for the grown-up) and she eats it up. Only problem is that the stains are really hard to get out!

    When he gets a bit toothier, try using a mandolin to julienne (the long way) carrots, zucchinis and yellow squashes, and saute them up in some olive oil. Add some pepper flakes for you, and you have a great summer side dish for fish, as well.


    Deb – I would LOVE to see baby food recipies and encourage it whole-heartedly! I don’t have any muppett’s of my own but I am godmother to about 10 and have a garden in my backyard screaming to be utilized for more uses!

  60. I have little green onion-like things that grow in my yard — can I use those for this recipe? I love chard and hope my kid will eat it if cooked like this. Thanks.

  61. Francesca

    Wonderful! I doubled this and made it with kale, as the idiots in my local shop didn’t even know what chard was. Sigh. The sauce was VERY thick though, and difficult to stir through the pasta. I’ll be using the leftover parmesan and scallions to try the drop biscuits from a few days ago =]

  62. Amy

    In my single, vegetarian days, I would heat up a package of frozen creamed spinach and eat it on toast. Yum. Can’t get away with that anymore–the family would barf. But this makes me want it again.

  63. Sometimes my favorite meals come from cleaning out the fridge. I’m now toying with a mega huge, value-sized bag of baby carrots that will not go away. Help!

    Anyway, this looks wonderful – I adore creamy greens and pasta. Perfect combo! I’m wondering of evaporated skim milk might work for a rich texture by less guilt than actually using cream? I will have to try it out!

  64. Melissa

    Thanks for letting me know you picked up the spring onions from Union Square. That is by far the BEST market in NYC. Love it! I second Rose’s request for simple recipes for baby food. I’m due in August w/my first and am curious what I should be doing when.

    p.s. if you are ever in need of ancho chiles or some other chiles or unique spices, check out Two for the Pot on 200 Clinton Street (at Atlantic Ave) in Brooklyn Heights/Cobble Hill. I picked up the ancho chiles there for your romesco sauce (yet to be made). It’s a wonderful hole in the wall place ran by a man who mixes loose leaf tea for sale and has some of the finest coffee and spices around. Plus it’s right near Sahadi’s and Trader Joes for more shopping!

  65. jules

    i made this with fresh spinach & ramps (instead of spring onion) from my csa. amazing flavor. thanks. now i’m off to make the yogurt cake.

  66. Dalnapen1


    Just wanted to thank you for your blog. This past weekend I hosted a bridal shower brunch, at which I made your wedding cake for 25 women (in four layers). Everything went well–the food was good. That chocolate cake is a revelation! Used some leftover Starbuck’s Pike’s Peak roast. Thank you for making an average good cook look like a gourmet maven! And such is my trust in you that I, a swiss buttercream novice, waited until an hour before the event to make the icing with which to ice those cakes. Turned out great! Thank you.

  67. Melanie

    As soon as I saw this recipe yesterday, I knew I had to share it with my mom and my sister – and my mom e-mailed this morning to say that she made it *last night* and she and my dad absolutely love it! It’s on our list for sure, too :-)

  68. Amy TH

    Must be chard season here on the East Coast. I brought home rainbow chard tonight from the grocery… This sounds DELISH!

  69. Matt

    I can’t tell you how excited I am to see an “Everyday Cakes” section on the Recipes page. Thank you thank you thank you!!

  70. Anne

    Dear Deb

    2 boys, 2 jobs and way too much on my to-do list. One thing being clean and sort out my fridge(s) Once I can see some negative space in one of the fridges, i will make this delicious looking dish. I have thoroughly enjoyed all the recipes that I have tried from your blog so far. I hope you won’t stress too much about your lack of focus. After a few years, you won’t even miss it.

  71. Moogylady1

    For getting a little or a lot of water out of greens, pasta, washed fruit, and any other veg I would be lost without my KitchenAid Salad Spinner. Any Salad Spinner would do though. I just like the size and momentum the K/A Spinner produces.
    RE: Greens-any hearty green is inter-changeable in these recipes.
    For a healthier version of “Mac & Cheese” with greens try my version.Soak the Chard to get the sand out of the crooks and crannies, barely spin (you will want the water on the greens), transfer to bowl of spinner. The strainer will be used for the draining of the pasta. I precook the pasta till al’dente, drain & set aside. In same pot, in olive oil saute’ crushed garlic with some sliced onions till starting to soften. Quickly add the greens with all the water in bowl to saute’. Quickly cover with tight lid, do not stir. Let the water left on the greens do the steam. I also add diced prosciutto or bacon if I have it on hand with the onions. After 5-8 minutes add the pasta to the greens, stir and reheat for 2-3 minutes. Mix in or top with one or all of some Romano, Parmesan, or Asiago cheeses depending on preference. Wonderful, quick,l and healthy.

  72. Nelly

    I made it, I ate it, I loved it! Thanks!

    I used too much chinese cabbage and baby bok choy and shallots (Aussie spring onions) so I added an extra 1/2 cup of milk or so to the roux, no worries.

    Having the leftovers tomorrow night as a side, with steak and yes, carrots!

  73. Gavin

    I substituted thinly sliced yellow onions and Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free flour mix and it came out wonderfully. Also, I used 1 cup 2% milk with 1/4 cup heavy cream.

    Every recipe my wife and I have made from your blog has been as delicious as your awesome photos made it look. Keep it up!

    Your braised short ribs is our go-to recipe for feeding and impressing the masses on a gray Seattle day.

  74. I made this last night, served it over pasta and it was absolutely divine! We upped the cheese just slightly and it was probably the best creamy-cheese sause that I’ve ever made. Thank you!

  75. bakingsoccermom

    Sooooo good! Made this for dinner Sunday night – couldn’t wait for leftovers last night! But the topper is my almost 18 year old son couldn’t wait for leftovers last night! Score! Thanks so much!

  76. Elizabeth

    I made this and it’s wonderful! I ate some for dinner then gave some to friends as a substitute for spinach dip and it was very popular (even among people who don’t think they like chard). Yum – thanks!

  77. You don’t have to add the milk slowly. As long as your roux is smooth, you won’t get lumps in your white sauce. You can pour the milk in all at once, you don’t even have to warm it beforehand. Whisk it while it’s heating up and thickening — but that’s to prevent scorching, not lumps. :-)

  78. I made this tonight with kale and regular onions instead of chard and spring onions, and served it over pasta. OMG. it was soooo good. I am glad it makes enough for two dinners, (for one person.) because I will be looking forward to having it again tomorrow!

  79. Mariana

    Another winner from Smitten Kitchen! You have become my go to resource for menu planning. I used spinach because that’s what I got at Farmer’s Market this weekend and added a dash of nutmeg. My 3 year old told me “Mama I DO like this spinach. Super yummy.” Thanks!!

  80. Jeff

    “That sounds delish! There was chard at our CSA pick up this week but I did not know what to do with it. Now i know!”

    Chard is a wonderful green– I like it better than spinach.
    it is great just steamed with a little butter/touch of sea salt

    It is great sauteed in a garlic/oil mixture– I often add a touch of sesame oil before serving.

    best thing about chard is that it’s easy to grow yourself– and produces all season– even after frost (no bolting) The more you cut it –the faster it grows.

  81. Pat

    The Creamed Chard and Pasta looks great. I need a dish for Saturday night and this might be it.

    Like so many others posting, I too have only recently discovered chard (at my local farm). Now I’m growing it. My 17 yr old loves it. I saute it with a oil and garlic, after tossed in the oil I add a touch of water or broth to help it cook.

    Thanks for the beautiful pictures.

  82. I tried this with Kale, and I’m not gonna lie, I didn’t love it. I would try a more tender green. The Kale just didn’t break down enough. I’m sure it’s fabulous with Chard though! Next time I’m going to make it with only spring onions and double the amount of onion, I think those were fantastic! Thanks again for another creative recipe.

  83. Alisha

    This is way WAY better than generic pasta sauce. It’s so perfectly different and delicious. I used all skim milk and no cream and it turned out awesome. FYI for those not able to use cream or heavy milk.

  84. Mestebla

    I made this for dinner tonight and it was great! I made mine with pasta to make it a little more substantial as a dinner. The only thing I would change next time would be to cut the chard into shorter ribbons because it tended to clump together in the dish and not be throughout. Thanks for sharing this. I will definitely make it again.

  85. Charlotte

    I made your creamed spinach the other night and it was yummmmmmmmy! (I added a wee bit of chopped pancetta to the mix) So if either spinach or chard is at the market today we’re having this for supper. Thanks!

  86. Maja

    I just made this and had it with Spätzle (thick egg noodles). Exquisite. Keep posting recipes that use healthy green stuff! (I almost never eat healthy green stuff, so I need the inspiration.)

  87. Made this for dinner tonight with pasta and it was excellent! I used a cup and a half of skim and half a cup of cream. This was my first go with chard too and it was a definite sucess!

  88. Emily

    I’m lactose intolerant, so I made it with soy creamer instead of the milk product and it turned out wonderfully! And…our CSA just started bringing us shares, and these both came in one week, so I was very thankful for the recipe’s timing. Thank you.

  89. This looks good. I can’t wait to try it. Not sure if my family will go for it. But it’s worth a try. Wish me luck. I’m trying to get as many ideas as I can. Thanks.

  90. maria

    Deb- I love reading your new baby food posts. My daughter was born in late June, so she’s a few months older than Jacob and she’s already loving homemade fried rice and this yummy creamed chard with spring onions. Thanks for inspiring me to find real food recipes she and I both love!

  91. Ann

    I made some of this the other weekend with the intention of saving most (after a little taste of course) to put on top of pasta during the week. It was all gone by the end of day 2, it never stood a chance.

  92. Which Jennifer

    This one was a winner with all seven of my kids, ages 1-12. I used kale because I needed to do something with it before it went bad, and it was so good the kids were fighting one another for more. I thought it would be good over pasta, but I never had a chance to make any, and they poured it over your asparagus hash instead.

  93. Laurel

    Just made this for lunch today bc since I had both chard and those gorgeous spring onions in my CSA, it was meant to be. Husband scarfed it up and I found it delicious. My greens wilted in about 3 minutes. To me, this IS a make-right-now dish!!

  94. I am going to get the stuff I need at the market this Saturday and make this. Thanks for the recipe!

    I too am an “organized” shopper. I have my lists, and send my boyfriend to the store. I tend to be inspired while at the store or market and end up with a lot of stuff extra. I need discipline! Glad I’m not the only one.

  95. Tory

    I have tons of chard in my garden, and made this last night to use some of it up. SO SO GOOD! I’ve actually never had creamed spinach or anything like it, so this was a first for me. I’m still warming up to cooked leafy greens, and steam-squeeze-chop is working well. With plenty of salt and pepper and parmesan this was amazing! I didn’t have time to make anything to go with it, so I served it on leftover biscuits (I figured if it worked for chipped beef it would work for this.) Yummy!!! :)

  96. Carrie

    We had the pasta version of this for dinner last night and it was delicious. We used half a pound of swiss chard and thought that was ample. It was our first time trying swiss chard but not our last!

  97. Charlene

    I made this last night with chard from my garden. Wonderful! I used half-and-half because I had some that needed to be used. Thanks for another winner, Deb!

  98. Camille in Slovenia

    Perfecto! Just grabbed this stuff from the garden.
    Sorry about your loss on The Takeaway the other day. injustice!

  99. K

    I just did a gratin-style take on this and it turned out fantastic. I followed your recipe to a T, using the smaller amount of milk, then topped it with two slices’ worth of fresh breadcrumbs tossed with about 1/4c grated Parmesan, a pinch of pepper flakes, and a minced garlic clove. Divine, and not too indulgent with 2% milk in the roux!

  100. A friend just told me about this dish from your site, calling it “mac n cheese” for her kids. Made it today and it was great! We added a side of some easy salmon for protein, and a side of veggies. I think we’ll make it again for sure. I used 1 bunch without weighing it–pretty sure it wasn’t a pound. I will be putting more chard in next time. Made the roux with 1% milk, so i liked that the recipe was fairly healthy. Thanks. I hadn’t really tried one of your recipes so far though I definitely know about your website!

  101. Brittany


    I’d say 2 cloves of garlic *minimum* otherwise you’ll be adding so much salt & pepper. Some diced/chopped tomatoes would be a nice addition also

  102. Cathy

    I absolutely love this … except I use garlic scapes instead of the spring onions. It is *so* good and definitely something we look forward to in the spring when we get garlic scapes in our CSA. Of course as I’m writing this I have both garlic scapes AND spring onions from the CSA, but I think the garlic scapes will win tonight for this recipe!

  103. SP

    I came home with a beautiful bunch of chard from this week’s CSA. Probably a crazy question but, might I strive to make this recipe dairy-free by using, say, (unsweetened) almond milk, do you know? Thanks, Deb!

  104. Lila

    I made this with Lactaid milk and it worked great. I really couldn’t believe I was hearing myself think, “I know I’m not still hungry but I just can’t stop eating this…swiss chard?!”

  105. Iris

    I made this tonight with alterations and it was awesome. I added chopped smoked bacon and replaced the spring onions with leeks. If you do, they need to be cooked longer than the spring onions. I went with half milk, half cream, heaped everything over linguine and all I can say is: wow! This is an impressive recipes. Totally delish!

  106. Beth

    Deb, this may be a long shot, but is there any passover-friendly substitute for the flour? Looking for some tasty veggie side-dishes for next week…


  107. deb

    Hi Beth — One method is to boil (and stir) the milk until it is reduced and a bit thicker. You’ll want to use more. You can do it with cream too, which seems to thicken a bit more easily. It’s not the same but it will give the creamed effect.

  108. Chloe

    Loved this. To be honest, it was more flavorful than I thought it would be in the sense that the spring onions gave it a sort of tang. I also thought your directions were great–it left some chewiness to the chard so that the dish has good texture. Yum!

  109. Jessica

    I had a huge bunch of fresh rainbow chard from my sister’s garden and was looking for a way to get my 3 year old to eat it. As usual, when I’m looking for inspiration, I stop by Smitten Kitchen first. This recipe was a HUGE hit. I chopped the stems and boiled them for a couple minutes before adding the leaves to be wilted. We served it over fresh roasted red pepper pasta from a local pasta company.

    Because the leaves and stems were chopped before the kid saw it, he didn’t realize it was “salad” he was eating. That’s his term for any leafy green and that means he won’t eat it. He’s the best broccoli and pea eater but he just won’t touch greens or red bell peppers, for some reason.

    Thank you for another outstanding, yet simple, recipe!

  110. Liz L.

    I can’t believe I haven’t commented on this recipe. I’ve been making it for a few years, and almost always go the pasta route. I do add a bit of Parmesan cheese even if I’m just having it without pasta. So delicious! I made the mistake one day of adding in some leftover mascarpone cheese that needed to be used, and don’t know if I can ever go back. Just a few tablespoons, but oh so decadent an addition!

  111. Mandy

    I saw the most wonderful looking Spring Onions today at Whole Foods and I’ve recently gotten into working with more greens so this is perfect. I’m pairing it with Fusilli for dinner tonight :) Thanks for another great recipe and a reason to use fresh spring produce.

  112. Julie

    This recipe has become a spring standby for me. As others have said, it’s incredibly versatile — I’ve made it with all kinds of greens and all different combinations of milk/cream. Last night I used rainbow chard, leeks, and a bulb of green garlic (and I could have used more!) with half skim, half whole milk for the sauce. It’s just so delicious. Thank you as always, Deb!

  113. KatieK

    My CSA for the past two weeks had Swiss Chard; I combined the two and it was fabulous. The chard had red veins and stems and now I wish I hadn’t disposed of the stems. It was really really pretty with the green, red and white from the cream (really, skim milk). My boys who aren’t big veggie fans (although they love creamed spinach) loved it. I might try it with bok choy as someone else did. The CSA seems to overwhelm me every week with of some kind of greens. Also I did add some parm cheese. It had a lovely sweetness to it.

  114. Megan

    Could you make this with collard greens instead of chard? My collards are thriving in my garden and I want to use them for this. Just not sure how it would change the recipe/ cooking time.

  115. Jordana

    Hi Deb, A few questions about this one as I am planning to make it tomorrow for my husbands birthday. I noticed you said one can add garlic in the recipe — How much garlic do you suggest? My other question is whether you think this can be made earlier in the day and reheated before dinner.
    Thank you for all of your wonderful recipes and amazing blog posts. Every year I make one of your cakes for his birthday. This year it will be the strawberry summer cake.

    1. deb

      Jordana — I would use one minced clove and add it with the onion at the beginning, or just in the last minute of sauteeing. For sauces like this, I don’t have problems reheating them, but I might just reheat and add the greens shortly before serving just because if the greens sit a long while, it miiiiight get watery. I’m not positive it will, but it’s safer not to find out if you’re just making it once.

      1. Marion

        FYI – the recipe instructions specify that we should saute onion and garlic; however, garlic is not included as an ingredient.

  116. Alex

    Made this tonight with 3 cloves of garlic and subbing two green onions and three pearl onions in the place of spring onions (which were sadly gone from my market super suddenly! :( ). It was excellent and a crowd pleaser. The extra crunch from including bits of the stems made this a more interesting dish than just straight up creamed spinach.

    Next time I will definitely try it over pasta!

  117. ThereseJ

    I can relate! I picked up these onions in produce because they looking beautiful. I’ll find something to concoct with. I googled and came to your site. I like to use foods and not have waste, too. I thank you for the comments and so will make the creamed kale with spring onions. Thanks!

  118. mt

    mmmm Used fresh swiss chard, scallions instead of spring onions. Added a bit of crushed red pepper to scallion/butter/garlic saute. Served over 8oz of cooked fusilli. Easy, rich, comforting.

  119. Jennifer

    Chard And spring onions in the CSA box Led me to make this. Over never had creamed-anything, so I’m delighted I like this. Took another reviewers recommendation and out an egg on top. Now if you could get me recipes for turnip greens and radishes, for those who don’t like either.

  120. Andee Althoff

    A neighborhood stand was selling spring onions — which I had never seen before — and a lightbulb went off! I went back to your fantastic recipe and modified it with garden spinach instead of chard. Oh, baby! The spring onions add a kind of culinary magic to the dish.

  121. Susan

    A nifty way to squeeze water out of cooked spinach or chard is to use a potato ricer! It takes a few ‘batches’ to get through it all but works terrifically. I’ve also used it to squeeze the liquid from shredded zucchini when making a relish.

  122. Lorri

    I made this as a pasta topper with beet greens and green onions (because that was in the CSA box and the chard went with the leeks into your flatbread) and it was fantastic! I did add the Parmesan. Thanks!

  123. Whitney

    This was delishious! I cooked the Swiss chard in the pan with the spring onions and then added the cream so it could be a one pot meal. Also added Herbs de Provence and a sprinkle of hard cheese. Topped with a piece of seared tilapia. Yummmmmm

  124. Ruby Christine

    Overall a simple nice dish to use up a heaping amount of chard… chose to go the pasta route. In the end, I found it to be a little bland so I added crushed red pepper and heavy doses of fresh ground pepper and flaked sea salt at the last minute to shoozz it up. Very nice.