Stuffed Chard with Fresh Marinara

Stuffed Chard with Fresh Marinara

13 Reviews
From: EatingWell Magazine, October/November 2005

Reminiscent of the stuffed cabbage of yore, the mild flavor of chard makes these beef-stuffed rolls perfect for the whole family. Make It a Meal: A side of whole-wheat spaghetti to soak up the sauce plus a glass of Syrah.

Ingredients 4 servings

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Original recipe yields 4 servings
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  • 1 pound 90%-lean ground beef
  • ½ cup plain dry breadcrumbs
  • 2 medium shallots, minced, divided
  • 1½ teaspoons Italian seasoning, divided
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided
  • 8 large Swiss chard leaves, stems removed (see Tip)
  • 1 14-ounce can reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • ½ cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese, (optional)


  • Active

  • Ready In

  1. Gently mix beef, breadcrumbs, 1 tablespoon shallot, ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning, garlic powder and ¼ teaspoon pepper in a large bowl until just combined. Divide the mixture into 8 oblong 3-inch portions.
  2. Overlap the two sides of a chard leaf where the stem was removed and place a portion of beef there. Tightly roll the chard around the beef. Place each roll, seam-side down, in a large nonstick skillet. Pour in broth, cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to a simmer; cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of a roll reads 165°F, 8 to 10 minutes. Discard any remaining broth.
  3. Meanwhile, heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the remaining shallot, 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, ¼ teaspoon pepper and crushed red pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the shallot is soft, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly reduced and thickened, about 8 minutes. Serve the chard rolls topped with sauce and Parmesan cheese, if desired.
  • Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate the chard rolls in the sauce; reheat in a covered baking dish at 350°F for about 10 minutes.
  • Tip: Remove chard stems, including the widest section of the rib at the base of the leaf, by making narrow triangular cuts.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: 2 rolls
  • Per serving: 174 calories; 5 g fat(1 g sat); 5 g fiber; 28 g carbohydrates; 7 g protein; 59 mcg folate; 0 mg cholesterol; 10 g sugars; 2,307 IU vitamin A; 28 mg vitamin C; 112 mg calcium; 4 mg iron; 782 mg sodium; 847 mg potassium
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (47% daily value), Vitamin A (46% dv), Iron (22% dv)
  • Carbohydrate Servings: 2
  • Exchanges: 1.5 starch, 2 vegetable, 4 lean meat

Reviews 13

October 29, 2019
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By: Diane Chehab
Usually I make Middle Eastern style stuffed chard leaves, but I looked for a change. This recipe is quite easy and very good, rather subtle without being boring. BTW I used ground grass-fed lamb and scallions, because that was what was available!
May 03, 2012
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By: EatingWell User
Try it with bulgur! I modified the recipe for my taste--used bulgur in stead of breadcrumbs (great texture, easy to prep while making sauce and mixing meat), added the chard stems, chopped, to the sauce, and added some extra red pepper for a kick. We had it with a raw kale salad, seared green beans, and cottage cheese. Very yummy! Pros: Healthy, flavorful, filling, flexible recipe, good as leftovers Cons: Prep takes a bit of time.
March 15, 2012
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By: EatingWell User
Excellent recipe- we made it wheat free We tried this recipe last night. I really like that most of the ingredients we already had in the pantry. My husband is allergic to wheat, so we substituted 3/4 c of minced zucchini for the breadcrumbs. Cuts the carbs a bit, and adds vegetable. Next time we will also double or triple up on the chard leaves for more veggie content. Also going to try it with ground bison for even lower fat content. Think the bison will stay moist. This recipe is a keeper.
October 14, 2011
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By: pweeks59
Great Use for the Chard in my garden Used the chard from my garden. Easy to make, delicious. The only changes I think it needs is more chard - I'll double or triple the leaves on each next time - and some grated onion rather than shallots in the filling for more flavor and moisture. Sometime I'll also try some roasted red pepper in the filling.
June 21, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
What a great idea! I am going to try it. I think I will eliminate the oil, and replace the bread with brown rice. I will also use onion instead of shallots. I like the idea of ground turkey, although I may mix turkey & beef some time, just to experiment with it. I will also use my slow cooker. I love chard, and I usually eat it steamed or raw. But for a cooked meal, this recipe sounds GREAT. Thanks for sharing.
June 21, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
The amount of chard in this recipe is negligible. It's just enough to make some people feel virtuous, & not enough to do much good.
June 21, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
If you wanted to make a healthy dish, why use beef and make it unhealthy. I would like to see how you can make it without the beef.
June 17, 2010
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By: EatingWell User
We're always looking for new dinner ideas. If they are VERY good, we keep the recipe on a go-to list. If they just okay, we discard...already have enough "just okay" recipes! Made this tonight and it was a definite keeper! Both my husband and I loved it. I made a few minor changes. Used fresh garlic instead of garlic powder. Added a little Worchestershire sauce in with meat mixture along with a little paprika and Emeril's Essence ( in LOTS of dishes! I added about 1/2 cup of diced red bell pepper and 2 tblsp. balsamic vinegar to the marinara and added fresh oregano and thyme (instead of dried herbs) about 5 minutes before it was finished reducing. Served it with brown rice and topped the rolls with marinara and freshly grated parmesan. It was VERY good!! Good enough and attractive enough to serve to guests!
May 09, 2010
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By: jordanhorowitz
This is a delicious and easy recipe (I agree with the others). I used ground turkey instead of beef, though.
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