Facebook LinkedIn Email Pinterest Twitter Instagram YouTube Icon Navigation Search Icon Main Search Icon Video Play Icon Plus Icon Minus Icon Check Icon Print Icon Note Icon Heart Icon Filled Heart Icon Single Arrow Icon Double Arrow Icon Hamburger Icon TV Icon Close Icon Sorted Hamburger/Search Icon

Classic Creamed Spinach

Scott Phillips

Servings: 4 to 6

With a subtle infusion of garlic and a bit of Parmigiano-Reggiano, this creamy side dish holds its own against the steakhouse competition.


  • 2 lb. fresh spinach (mature crinkly leaves, not flat baby leaves), stems removed
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 3 large cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 oz. (1 Tbs.) unsalted butter
  • 1 Tbs. plus 1 tsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 140
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 100
  • Fat (g): 11
  • Saturated Fat (g): 7
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 0.5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 3
  • Cholesterol (mg): 35
  • Sodium (mg): 250
  • Carbohydrates (g): 7
  • Fiber (g): 2
  • Protein (g): 5


  • Wash the spinach thoroughly using 2 or 3 changes of water, but don’t dry the leaves. Set a 6- to 8-quart Dutch oven over medium-high heat and add half of the wet spinach to it. Season with 1/4 tsp. salt, cover, and steam, tossing frequently, until wilted, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a colander in the sink and repeat with the remaining spinach.

    Allow the spinach to cool in the colander for several minutes. Using a clean, folded dishtowel, press down on the spinach to remove as much water as possible. Let the spinach rest for a few more minutes and then press again to remove more water. Transfer the spinach to a cutting board, blot again with the towel, and chop very coarsely.

    Put the milk, cream, and smashed garlic in a 1-quart saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat; then immediately remove from the heat and let sit for 10 minutes.

    With a fork, remove most of the smashed garlic from the cream mixture, pressing the garlic against the side of the pan to squeeze out the cream. (It’s fine if small pieces of garlic remain.) Transfer the cream mixture to a liquid measuring cup and add 1/2 tsp. salt, a few grinds of pepper, and a big pinch of nutmeg.

    Wipe out the saucepan. Melt the butter in the pan over medium-low heat. Add the flour and cook, whisking constantly, until pale and smooth, about 1 minute.

    Whisk in the cream mixture in a slow, steady stream. Raise the heat to medium and simmer the sauce, whisking constantly, until it thickens and reduces slightly, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat.

    Return the chopped cooked spinach to the Dutch oven and set over medium heat. Add the sauce and stir to combine. Add the Parmigiano and mix well. Continue to stir constantly until the spinach is hot, 1 to 2 minutes. Season with more salt and pepper and serve immediately.


Rate or Review

Reviews (6 reviews)

  • NordyGirl | 06/10/2019

    This is just divine. I could eat the entire thing no problem. The only thing I need to change is my family's aversion toward spinach....

  • divi2 | 04/16/2019

    This is the 2nd time I've made this. Great both times. If you want it more garlicky let the smashed garlic stay in a little longer.

  • User avater
    SunnyTD | 12/26/2018

    Made this for Christmas dinner and it was wonderful. I could only find the baby spinach, just used a little more, and it worked perfectly. Additionally, I sprinkled a little extra Parm on the top, with a small spritz of lemon juice just before serving.

Show More

Rate this Recipe

Write a Review

Delicious Dish

Find the inspiration you crave for your love of cooking

Fine Cooking Magazine

Subscribe today
and save up to 50%

Already a subscriber? Log in.


View All


Follow Fine Cooking on your favorite social networks

We hope you’ve enjoyed your free articles. To keep reading, subscribe today.

Get the print magazine, 25 years of back issues online, over 7,000 recipes, and more.

Start your FREE trial