Pasta With Swiss Chard, Sausage, and Bacon

I’m trying to get myself organized as a blogger, and I’ve decided to make Fridays my recipe day. We’ll start with my new favorite recipe, Pasta with Swiss Chard, Sausage, and Bacon. Oh, did I mention there’s cheese, too?

This pasta with swiss chard recipe takes a few extra steps to make, but you’ll still have dinner on the table in less than 45 minutes. And you’ll be glad you took the time to make it, trust me!

I found this recipe in the Food Network magazine. I went straight to the store to buy a few ingredients I didn’t have and made it two nights ago. It was a huge hit with Jason and I, though my kids aren’t big pasta eaters and wouldn’t try it. I’m not even sure they are really our kids since they don’t like pasta!

This simple and quick pasta with swiss chard recipe makes for a perfect weeknight family meal. Includes links to other pasta recipes as well.

Pasta With Swiss Chard, Sausage, and Bacon

Pasta With Swiss Chard, Sausage, and Bacon
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  • 12 ounces rigatoni (or any kind of pasta will work)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 12 ounces sweet (or spicy!) Italian sausage, casings removed, crumbled
  • 4 slices of bacon, chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 bunch Swiss chard, stems removed, leaves chopped
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 cups milk (not skim)
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese (about 1 ounce)
  • Grated zest of 2 lemons
  • Freshly ground pepper


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook per instructions on box. Reserve 1/2 cup cooking water, then drain the pasta.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sausage and bacon. Cook until browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate using a slotted spoon; set aside.
  3. Wipe the skillet clean; add the butter and melt over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until slightly softened, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the chard and cook, stirring occasionally, until wilted, 3 to 4 minutes. Sprinkle in the flour and cook, stirring, until combined, 1 to 2 minutes.
  4. Add the milk to the chard mixture and bring to a boil; cook 1 minute. Stir in the sausage, bacon, parmesan, lemon zest and a few grinds of pepper. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened, about 6 minutes. Add the pasta to the pot and toss, adding enough of the reserved pasta water to loosen.

A few notes about this pasta with swiss chard recipe…

The original recipe didn’t call for bacon, but I added it in because, well, everything tastes better with bacon! Pancetta would be good too.

I used rigatoni and fusilli because I had it on hand. Next time, I’ll cut the amount of pasta back to maybe 10 ounces or so or make more sauce. It’s all about the sauce.

I think any kind of greens would be yummy. Next I’ll try spinach or arugula.

Jason thinks I should add sun dried tomatoes, capers, and maybe even pine nuts. Fresh basil on top would be good.

This simple and quick pasta with swiss chard recipe makes for a perfect weeknight family meal. Includes links to other pasta recipes as well.

That’s the great thing about recipes, you can make them your own! For more great pasta recipes, check out my Arugula Pasta Salad, Italian Sausage and Penne Bake, and my Pasta! board on Pinterest.

Do you have a favorite pasta dish to share?

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