Lemony Swiss Chard Salad with White Beans and Garlic Breadcrumbs

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Try this plant-based gem once and you’ll crave it all winter long.
lemony swiss chard salad with white beans and garlic breadcrumbs recipe: two bowls of lemony swiss chard salad with white beans and garlic breadcrumbs
Christine Han/Big Bites

Have you only ever sautéed Swiss chard? (Or perhaps you’ve never cooked it at home…no judgment here.) The lemony Swiss chard salad with white beans and garlic breadcrumbs from Kat Ashmore’s new cookbook, Big Bites: Wholesome, Comforting Recipes That Are Big on Flavor, Nourishment and Fun, proves that the hearty winter green can also be enjoyed raw.

“Swiss chard makes a wonderful addition to or base of a salad, because it’s both tender and sturdy, meaning it holds up well to weighty additions like white beans and a robust, lemony dressing,” writes Ashmore. “The soft bitterness of the chard combined with the creamy bellies of the beans and the crunchy breadcrumbs makes for one lively bite of salad.”

The recipe calls for making breadcrumbs from scratch. You can use any hearty country bread you have on hand—just make sure it’s stale for maximum crunch.   


Fresh Breadcrumbs

2 cups stale bread


2 tablespoons and ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided

1 cup fresh breadcrumbs

1 garlic clove, minced

¼ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning

Crushed red pepper flakes

Zest and juice of 1 lemon

¼ teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 large bunch Swiss chard (about 12 ounces)

One 15-ounce can white beans, drained, rinsed and patted dry

1 shallot, thinly sliced


1. Make the Breadcrumbs: Cut the bread into 1- to 2-inch cubes. Place the pieces in a food processor or high-powered blender and process until you have crumbs, stopping the processor and scraping the sides when needed to ensure the bread processes evenly. Store the crumbs in the refrigerator for up to one week.

2. Make the Salad: Warm 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a small, heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the breadcrumbs and cook, stirring frequently, until they turn crisp and golden brown, 4 to 6 minutes. Stir in the garlic and a pinch each of salt and red pepper flakes, then toast for about 30 seconds. Remove from the heat and set aside.

3. In a large serving bowl, add the lemon zest and juice, the mustard and ¼ teaspoon of salt. Slowly whisk in the remaining olive oil.

4. Wash and dry the Swiss chard and remove the stems from the leaves. Discard the stems or freeze them to make a pasta sauce or frittata.

5. Stack a few of the leaves on top of each other and roll them into a cigar shape. Slice the cigar crosswise into thin ribbons. Repeat with all the leaves, then place them into the bowl with the dressing.

6. Toss the chard and dressing to coat. Top with the white beans and shallot, then the breadcrumbs.

Nutrition Facts
  • 627 calories

  • 22g fat

  • 82g carbs

  • 29g protein

  • 6g sugars

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Note: The information shown is Edamam's estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.

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