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Organic, Real Food on a Budget – Fusilli with Chard, Bacon, and Cream

by Deliciously Organic on July 6, 2011

One of the most important habits that make organic, real food more affordable is keeping pantry staples. Pantry staples ensure that with a few fresh ingredients from the store you can whip up a meal and reduce the need or urge to order out.

Today’s recipe uses only 6 ingredients and provides a quick way to get a meal on the table (Thank you to Jennifer for the recipe idea!). Brown rice pasta, swiss chard, red onion, bacon, cream and salt. It utilizes several of my pantry staples so I only needed to buy a few ingredients to make a quick, delicious, and nourishing meal for my family.

Fusilli with Chard, Bacon, and Red Onions

Serving Size: Serves 6

Fusilli with Chard, Bacon, and Red Onions

You can use other types of pasta in this dish such as spaghetti, macaroni, farfalle, etc.


    For the Pasta:

  • 16 ounces gluten-free Fusilli pasta (or grain-free pasta such as Cappellos)
  • 8 pieces bacon, cut into small pieces (nitrate-free and pastured preferred)

  • 1 large purple onion, diced

  • 1 bunch swiss chard, washed, chopped

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

  • 1 teaspoon sea salt


Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain. Set aside. Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crispy. Using a slotted spoon, remove bacon from skillet and place it in a bowl. Add the onion to the skillet and cook until caramelized, about 8 minutes. Add chard and stir until limp. Add pasta, cream, salt, and cooked bacon. Toss and adjust salt to taste. Serve immediately.

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{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

the urban baker July 6, 2011 at 6:37 am

I love raiding my pantry – it is just so satisfying! Love the addition of bacon-I think it makes this dish.


Marla July 6, 2011 at 6:47 am

This pasta looks wonderful :)


Karen July 6, 2011 at 8:12 am

YUM! I don’t have the swiss chard but I have plenty of fresh spinach, I know what we’re having for dinner tonight. Thanks!


Allison [Girl's Guide to Social Media] July 6, 2011 at 8:21 am

This looks so fresh and fulfilling. Also, I didn’t know about Herbamare. Thanks for the pantry staple suggestions!


Amanda July 6, 2011 at 8:51 am

Ahh, this post has me drooling! Gorgeous pasta :)


Georgia Pellegrini July 6, 2011 at 9:06 am

WONDERFUL staples. Very inspiring. Also, I love chard ; )


Lucy Lean July 6, 2011 at 10:19 am

I love that you consider cream a pantry staple – thanks for sharing and sorry to hear about the stealing of content – such a bore when people don’t respect you


Katherine July 6, 2011 at 11:26 am

So sorry you have had to deal with people being dishonest. :( This looks totally yummy though! I think I am going to add a bit of tomato as well since they are coming in from my garden.


Katrina July 6, 2011 at 12:14 pm

So yummy looking. Awesome.


Brooke @ Food Woolf July 7, 2011 at 12:35 pm

Love the pantry list. What a great list to have handy! Gotta print that out and make sure I’m stocked up and ready to go for any occasion. You’re the best!


Laura July 7, 2011 at 1:54 pm

Looks great! I think you need to write another cookbook titled “Organic on a Budget!!” Love these recipes. Thank you.


Karen July 8, 2011 at 9:11 am

I made this last night, phenomenal! I used the spinach I had on hand and added shredded chicken to make it a complete meal. Hubby and son wanted more, yea! Carrie…your recipes rock our kitchen!


Katie July 11, 2011 at 8:13 am

Made this on Saturday w/ a different kind of pasta and my cream had soured so I subbed in a whole milk and sour cream combo. It was AWESOME!!! My family and I absolutely loved it! I am really excited about a new way to cook all the greens coming from our CSA! Thank you!!


Claudia July 11, 2011 at 5:30 pm

Made this tonight – myself and my 4 boys loved it. Excellent recipe, thank you.


Kristi Rimkus July 17, 2011 at 10:27 am

This is a people-pleaser for sure! I’ve bookmarked this for a coming dinner party. Yum!


Debbie Lee July 18, 2011 at 9:44 am

This is on our dinner menu for tonight-can’t wait to try it!


Debbie July 31, 2011 at 8:40 am

Made this and my husband & I both loved it! Switching over to organic has been so easy thanks to you :)


Deliciously Organic August 1, 2011 at 11:19 am

Thanks for letting me know. 😉


Larissa September 27, 2011 at 6:36 am

Your recipes look good and I look froward to trying them. It’s too bad about your situation with some users lifting your content. I keep all my recipes on Souchef, but it requires copying and importing a recipe. Unfortunately, I could not import your recipes to my Souchef files and I don’t use “print” option, because I prefer to keep it on my computer files and I don’t want to waste paper and ink.
Best of luck with your grain-free challenge. Eggplant involtini will be my first choice to go for. I already make my own ricotta and quark, so that’s a natural.


Heather October 3, 2011 at 2:04 pm

I made this for dinner yesterday, it was amazing! One of the most delicious pasta dishes I’ve ever had. Used Brown Rice Penne from Trader Joe’s, and Applegate Farms organic bacon.


Brandy October 7, 2011 at 4:39 pm

I made this dish tonight for dinner and LOVED it! The only thing I did differently was added 3 fresh cloves of garlic in with the onions during the last 3 minutes of them cooking. (Yum! I love garlic!) My kids (10 & under) thought it was wonderful as well! Thank you SO much for the recipe. I will definitely make again & again!


Melissa October 21, 2011 at 7:29 am

This sounds so amazing. I love that you include gluten-free options for your recipes. Thank you!!


Melissa November 22, 2011 at 12:39 pm

This was a great recipe! I tweaked it a bit for my love of strong flavors by adding shallots and crushed red pepper and it was a big hit! Thanks!


kahlia March 21, 2012 at 9:11 am

I had a question pertaining to the staples. Can I substitute sunflower oil for the coconut oil, and amber and light agave nectar for honey and sugar?


Deliciously Organic March 21, 2012 at 10:52 am

You can if you’d like, but those ingredients aren’t ones I recommend if one is wanting to eat unprocessed foods (I also haven’t tested my recipes with these ingredients, so I can’t promise the recipes will turn out as intended). The sunflower oil commonly found at the grocery store is a highly processed oil full of omega-6 fatty acids. They use high heat, hexane, and deodorizers to clean the oil, so it’s not a very healthy oil. If you want to use sunflower oil, you could use one that isn’t quite as processed, although it is more expensive (http://www.radiantlifecatalog.com/product/FLORA-ORGANIC-SUNFLOWER-OIL/healthy-fats-oils/) Agave nectar is a highly processed sweetener, so I don’t recommend it. Here is an article about agave: http://www.westonaprice.org/modern-foods/agave-nectar-worse-than-we-thought Here is one about vegetable oils: http://www.westonaprice.org/know-your-fats/skinny-on-fats


amy May 24, 2012 at 2:04 pm

it sounds yummy! I am always having trouble avoiding fast food because I have 3 kiddos under 4 and often on my hubbys days off we end up running errends till late, or I just loose track of time until I should have been making dinner a half hour or more ago. we just went gluten free and cane sugar/hfcs free. also trying to loose baby weight so going more protein, less carbs . do you have any suggestions of what veggies I could add to this so I could take out some of the pasta?


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