Pickled chard stems

So I did some chilled chard with lemon, then “sausage, white bean, and chard soup”. Now I have stems.

Love and Lemons pickled chard stems

David Lebovitz

Heartbeet kitchen pickled swiss chard stems

Food 52

Different ratios of vinegar to water and sugar. Anybody done this?


With kale stems, not chard, but yes. They make an interesting garnish for a martini, and they’re also good as part of a cheese plate. I tried chopping them up and mixing them into rice, but that was not very successful.


Or bloody mary


Thanks all!

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Your pickled chard stems look fabulous. That’s their highest and best use, to my tastebuds.

We eat loads of chard from our farm share in the summer. I usually just slice up the chard stems thinly, on the diagonal, and use them in the dish I’m making with the leaves. I sauté the sliced stems first along with the onions or garlic or whatever aromatics I’m using. You can imagine that those fibrous stems need more cooking time than leaves.

I have also grilled the stems—plenty of recipes out there—but I’ve never been too excited about the result.


So which recipe did you use? Did you use much sugar? Blanch or not? I like the stems just fine cooked following @tomatotomato’s method but this intrigues me and is one of relatively few vegetables I have not yet tried to pickle.

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I’ve done this sort of things with collard stems, though you have to discard the woodier parts and simmer them a bit.


I would say it came closest to the David Leibovitz version. I was making a smaller batch, and didn’t carefully measure sugar, but maybe a TB. I cut the stems “OCD” style.

I didn’t blanch. I started off with the Love and Lemons recipe that has you salt them and let them sit awhile., and used shallots from that recipe, and maybe that volume of rice and white vinegar and sugar, but the volume of liquid didn’t cover the chard. Added a bit more water and white vinegar.

Some celery salt, because Heartbeet said celery seed, and I had some celery salt.


(I got that from my daughter who is “sheltering in place” with us).

Edited to fix some spelling and stuff.

That one looked closest to my ideal ratios other than WAY more sugar than I would use – like you, I would go no more than 1 T. Be sure and tell us how you like them after a few days!

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