Silverbeet also is known as Swiss chard, seakale beet or chard is a leafy green vegetable with (normally) white stems. It may seem that silverbeet might be part of the spinach family; however, it’s part of the beet family.
Silverbeet has more of an earthy, stronger flavour compared to say English spinach or baby spinach. It’s also much heartier.
I’ve grown up eating silverbeet as it was a staple in my family home. We would have it in many different ways, and it was always prepared very simply.
If my mum wanted to make a quick meal, a silverbeet recipe was generally on the cards, next to other quick dishes like this cabbage pasta.
My mum being Croatian grew up eating silverbeet too. The three simple recipes I share with you below I learned from my mum and grandmother. Silverbeet originated from Europe and is quite popular in Mediterranean countries.
Eat with the seasons
Silverbeet is currently in season here in Australia, and where we live out in the country, it has become one of the only leafy greens I can get organic at the moment. So I’ve decided to embrace this vegetable and share with you the three simple ways that you can use silverbeet at home.
I’ve realised Swiss chard isn’t a vegetable that too many people would pick up off the shelf unless they knew what to do with it. If you wish to grow it, there are plenty of places you can buy seed for them!
So to get you more comfortable with this delicious vegetable, I thought I’d go through and answer some common questions about it first.
Do you eat the stalks of silverbeet?
Yes, you do! I try and use every part of a vegetable when I cook so naturally, I’ll use every part of the silverbeet.
In all three of these silverbeet recipes, I’ve included the white stalks, so nothing is wasted. They do take a little bit longer to cook, but they add a delicious depth of flavour and texture to the dish.
My tip is to dice it up finely and make sure you add it to the pan/pot about 5-10 minutes before adding the rest of the silverbeet. This way it will cook for longer making it softer and less noticeable in your dish.
If you’re ever using a recipe that says to leave the stalks out, you can add them later to your soup, stir-fry or stock, so it doesn’t go to waste.
What is silverbeet good for?
Like many leafy greens, silverbeet has many health benefits. It’s a great source of vitamin K, A, B6, C, riboflavin, and folate as well as iron, zinc, potassium and manganese. You’ll also find that it’s a wonderful source of fibre.
What all this translates to is that chard is good for:
- Your brain and nerve function
- Can help to regulate blood pressure
- Helping to clot your blood
- Assists with bone metabolism
- Helps regulate blood calcium levels
- Will assist by supporting your immune system
- Promotes the absorption of iron
- Amongst many others!
Fun fact: As I mentioned earlier, depending on where you live, silverbeet is called a variety of different things. When we refer to rainbow chard, that means that instead of the stems being white, they can be an array of colours like pink, yellow, orange, red or even purple.
Now that you know a little more about this wonderful leafy green vegetable, I hope that next time you’re buying produce you consider picking up a bunch!
These three silverbeet recipes are so easy to make and are a quick, healthy and nutritious weeknight dinner, side or starter. I eat all of these as main meals as they’re so delicious.
If you try any of these recipes, let me know! Would love for you to leave a comment and rating below. If you want to go that extra mile, tag us on Instagram or share your photo of the recipe on Pinterest. Don’t want to make it now? Pin it for later!
First up, we have this super creamy (without the cream) silverbeet and potato soup. With just a few ingredients that you’ll need on hand, this is perfect for those cosy evenings inside.
Next up I’m sharing with you something that I’ve only ever seen my mum make, and that is pasta with tomato sauce with the chard in it. SO simple, but I’m still surprised how this dish packs so much flavour! Not dry or any weird textures, who would have known that chard is an excellent addition to your tomato sauce?!
And lucky last, the simplest of them all. This classic Croatian dish that I was also raised on has been something that reminds me fondly of my mum. Better known to me (or others from that part of the world) as “blitva sa krumpirom”, it’s great accompanied by some pan-fried tofu and drizzled with tamari.
How easy are these? Which silverbeet recipe caught your attention? Have you had any of these before?