Lemony Rice with Swiss Chard Recipe- Vegan, Easy, and Delicious

I'm sorry I haven't posted in the last week- I've been dealing with sick kids- all four of my kids have taken turns having the flu, and we're already on week 2 of dealing with sick family members. Fortunately, thus far my husband and I have been spared.

With all that, to be honest, I haven't been eating so healthily, eating far too much junk and ready made food. While I did manage to get enough protein each day (for the most part) I was feeling vegetables very lacking in my diet. I did have a fridge full of food, but wasn't inspired. It's been pouring rain and the weather has made my garden flourish, my garden overflowing with all different types of greens, but predominantly my sea beet, beta vulgaris, or wild Swiss chard.

In just a few minutes, I picked all this chard (and there's about 50 times more of that out in my yard at the moment), determined that I'd make myself a nutritious, vegetable heavy, dish with it. I turned to the internet looking for ideas, and got many, but one specific idea was sent to me by someone named Abby- Swiss chard cooked together with rice and lemon.
In my mind, something about cold, wet days goes hand in hand with rice, especially sticky rice, so I made this rice with short grain rice. It can be adapted to be made with regular white rice, but I don't know the exact proportions of water if using regular white rice.

This recipe is easy, yummy, frugal, and vegan. If you don't have Swiss chard or sea beet like I do, you can make this also with beet greens, spinach, or probably kale as well.

Lemony Rice with Swiss Chard Recipe- Vegan, Easy, and Delicious

2 tablespoons olive oil or other oil
1 large onion
4 cloves garlic
2 large bunches of Swiss chard or other greens
3 cups short grain rice
4 cups water
1/2 cup lemon juice
2-2 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper (optional)

1. Rinse your rice in a mesh strainer until the water runs clear. Usually this involves swishing the rice around in water three times.

2. Chop your onion and mince your garlic.

3. Heat up your oil in a saucepan and add your onion and garlic, cooking on a medium high heat until starting to get golden.

4. Chop up your Swiss chard and add it to the pan, then saute it for a minute or two to get it to begin to wilt.

5. Add the rest of the ingredients, mix it well, and cover the pan, and bring it to a boil.

6. Once boiling, lower it to a small flame, and cook it covered until all the water is absorbed, around 20 minutes.

7. Serve hot.


What are your favorite recipes using Swiss chard? Does this look like a recipe you'd try?

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal


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  1. Looks delicious! Although I have to ask - does the nutritional elements of the chard get boiled away since you cook it for 20 minutes?

    1. As far as I'm aware, if you cook greens or other vegetables, they could lose some of their nutrients into the water, but since the water is being absorbed by the rice, it wouldn't be lost. There are some nutrients destroyed while cooking, like vitamin c, but there are other nutrients made more available by cooking. Specifically with greens I've heard it is healthier to cook them with a bit of fat.

  2. i have not found short grain rice labeled that way, but i found arborio and risotto, both short grain types....can i use either or both of those?

  3. I would definitely try that recipe. It looks simple and delicious.

  4. if i 1/2 the amount of rice, do i 1/2 ALL the other ingredients?

  5. This looks like a Greek recipe I was just looking at to try soon, spanakorizo. It looks so delicious!

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