Stuffed Swiss Chard / Bietola Ripiena

Swiss chard is one of those vegetables that mystifies people. What to do with it? Short of steaming or boiling it and serving it like spinach, it doesn’t seem to get the same kind of innovative treatment that other vegetables get. Why not stuff it with ricotta cheese? Light and airy, this makes a good side to meats and fish and is a vegetarian’s dream.

Serves four


  • 15 Oneounce container ricotta cheese (skim or whole milk)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 8 large whole Swiss chard leaves with stems, washed
  • 2 tablespoons Filippo Berio extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • Ingredients


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. In a bowl combine the ricotta cheese, egg, 1/4 cup of the grated cheese, salt and parsley.  Set aside.
  3. Cut away the stems from the Swiss chard and thinly slice them.  Set aside.
  4. Bring a large pot of water to the boil and add 1 teaspoon salt. Add the whole leaves and blanch for 10 seconds. Carefully remove the leaves with a slotted spoon and allow them to cool. 
  5. Meanwhile heat  the olive oil in a sauté pan. When the oil is hot add the onion and stems and cook them over medium heat until the stems soften. Cool the mixture slightly, then add to the bowl with the ricotta cheese mixture.
  6. Lay each Swiss chard leaf flat and spread  1/4 cup of the cheese mixture down the center of each. Starting from the end nearest you roll each leaf up to encase the filling, folding in the sides as you go. 
  7. Spread 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce in the base of the casserole.
  8. Place the Swiss chard rolls in a single layer in the casserole and spread the remaining tomato sauce over the tops of each. 
  9. Sprinkle the tops with the rest of the Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.
  10. Cover the dish tightly with aluminum foil and bake for 35 minutes. Uncover and serve immediately.

This recipe was featured on Season 20 - Episode 2021.

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Is it possible to watch the video when you’re making stuffed Swiss chard? I remember seeing it once before but now it’s gone. I made it once before but I would like a review. Thank you.


What tomato sauce? I don’t see it in the ingredients list, but it is in the directions. This is my first visit to this website. I caught some of your show today on PBS and was curious about the recipe. I also liked your verbal instructions to the students to “always read the recipe through first”. Please correct this recipe.


We are currently growing Swiss chard in our yard and I must say, I wondered what to do with it. This idea sounds fantastic!

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