Sautéed Rainbow Chard with Garlic and Lemon


For a gorgeous, relatively light Christmas side dish, 2002 F&W Best New Chef Fabio Trabocchi turns to rainbow chard, which has crisp-tender stalks in an array of bright yellows, pinks, and reds. Plain green Swiss chard is delicious here, too.

Total Time:
1 hrs
10 servings
Sauteed Rainbow Chard with Garlic and Lemon
© John Kernick


  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided

  • 3 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced

  • 4 pounds rainbow or ruby chard, thick stems discarded, inner ribs removed and cut into 2-inch lengths, leaves cut into 2-inch ribbons

  • Kosher salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest


  1. In a large pot, heat 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Stir in the garlic and cook over moderately high heat until lightly golden, about 1 minute. Add the chard leaves in large handfuls, allowing each batch to wilt slightly before adding more. Season the chard with salt and pepper and cook, stirring, until the leaves are softened and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes. Transfer the chard to a bowl. Wipe out the pot.

  2. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pot. Add the chard ribs and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the wilted chard leaves and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a bowl, sprinkle with the lemon zest, and serve right away.

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