Comforting gratin made with Swiss chard, quinoa, and cheese. Perfect vegetarian dinner for a chilly night.Jump to Recipe
Not that this stops me at all, mind you, but greens take up way too much real estate in the refrigerator for my husband, Carnivorous Maximus. So when colorful flounces of Swiss chard grabbed my attention at the market earlier this week, I knew that complaints about them crowding out his meat were in my future. I needed a solution to keep everyone happy. The solution: a cheesy Swiss chard gratin. You should know, cheese is our 'go-to' peacemaker. And to make it more of a meal for me, I added quinoa to the mix. Luckily, quinoa is the only grain he doesn’t greet with a toss of his head and a series of neighs, while pawing the floor.
Casseroles like this gratin are flexible, so feel free to adjust to your liking. First I wilted the Swiss chard - 4 huge bouquets yielded barely a cup of wilted greens! Next I slid the tomatoes in to roast while some onion and garlic sautéed on the stove. Finally I stirred them together with the cheeses, eggs, milk, and spices. While it baked, I whipped up a topping of toasted breadcrumbs to spread over the gratin when I came out of the oven.
When it was done, CM couldn’t wait to try it, and then asked for seconds. With this seal of approval, I feel confident this is a vegetarian casserole your whole family will like.
Another hearty vegetarian gratin is this tomato gratin, with cauliflower, tomatoes, tofu and spinach in a yogurt - curry powder sauce. It's topped with sliced tomatoes, breadcrumbs and cheese.
Before moving onto the recipe, another recipe with Swiss chard and quinoa is this vegan Swiss chard recipe that sautés chard with quinoa, lemon, capers, and olives.
Swiss Chard Casserole with Quinoa
- Dutch oven or other heavy-bottomed pot for precooking the Swiss chard
- Small pot for cooking the quinoa
- ¼ cup white quinoa to make ~ ¾ cup cooked quinoa
- 4 large bunches rainbow or green Swiss chard
- 2 jarred roasted red peppers diced
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
- 4 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small yellow onion diced (about ¾ cup)
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- ½ cup ricotta cheese
- ½ cup grated Swiss cheese
- ¼ cup low-fat milk
- 2 large eggs
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
- ⅛ teaspoon grated nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- ¾ cup breadcrumbs
- 2 tablespoons pine nuts
- 2 teaspoons Parmesan cheese, for garnish
- Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil over high heat, preheat the oven to 375˚F, and butter an 8" X 8" casserole dish.
- In small pot, covered with a lid, simmer the quinoa in ½ cup water (or vegetable broth) until done. It's done when you see little spirals in the seeds where they appear to have popped open. Drain of any excess liquid.
- Pro-tip: Go here for details on how to cook up a pot of fluffy quinoa.
- Remove the stems of the chard from just below the leaf, and discard.Slice the leaves horizontally into one-inch wide ribbons, and add to the boiling water. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes, or until the leaves are very wilted. (You may need to do this in batches.) Drain, and when cool enough to handle, squeeze as much water out as possible. Set aside.
- Add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil to a sauté pan over medium heat, and sauté the onion until soft, about 10 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook an additional minute.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the cheeses, milk, eggs, salt, pepper, and nutmeg until well combined. Fold in the chard, red peppers, cooked quinoa, and sautéed onions, and transfer into a casserole dish using a rubber spatula. Bake for 30 minutes, or until bubbling.
- Melt the butter in the sauté pan and add the breadcrumbs and pine nuts. Sauté until lightly toasted, about two minutes. Spread across the top of the baked casserole. Add a little Parmesan cheese for garnish on top.
- Serve warm with a fresh green salad.
Delicious recipe is the perfect combination of healthy eating with delicious ingredients! Thank you for sharing, no doubt is a dish that will be amazing for my diet!