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How to Cook with Spinach - 10 Things to Make with Fresh or Frozen Spinach

Updated on June 19, 2013

Spinach is good for your health

Spinach is one of the healthies vegetables you can eat. It is a source of many essential vitamins and minerals, and contains antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties that may help ward off illness and disease.

If you would like to incorporate more spinach into your meals, but aren't sure where to start, read on for ten things to do with spinach.


Spinach feta pasta is quick and easy to make
Spinach feta pasta is quick and easy to make | Source

Add spinach to pasta dishes

If you're looking for an easy way to start eating more spinach, you can't go wrong by adding spinach to pasta dishes. There are many pasta recipes with spinach to choose from, including recipes for chicken spinach alfredo, spinach feta pasta or spinach lasagna roll-ups.

You can also make your own spinach pasta dish by just adding a handful or two of spinach leaves to your favourite pasta recipe.

Spinach lasagna with ricotta cheese and bechamel sauce

Easy Cream of Spinach Soup

Spinach soup

Making soup may not be the first thing you think of doing with spinach, but there are a lot of spinach soup recipes available.

Here are a few recipes to try:

Quiz - How Much Do You Like Spinach?


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Spinach side dishes

An easy way to serve spinach as a side dish is to boil or steam some fresh spinach leaves for a few minutes until wilted, and serve with butter and a bit of salt.

You can also sautee spinach leaves and slivered almonds in a bit of olive oil or butter for a slightly fancier variation.

Another spinach side dish that is popular at some restaurants, particularly steak houses, is creamed spinach. See the video below for one way to make creamed spinach at home.

Easy way to make creamed spinach:

Spinach dips are always popular

You're probably already familiar with the classic spinach dip recipe, made with dry vegetable soup mix and often served in a hollowed out round pumperknickel bread bowl, but there are many other spinach dip recipes to try, including:

Have you ever had spinach brownies?

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Use spinach when you bake

Spinach makes a healthy addition to baked goods. Believe it or not, you can make surprisingly delicious cakes, muffins and brownies with spinach and you have no idea you're eating the green stuff in most cases. (Hint - chocolate does a great job of disguising the look and taste of spinach)

Here's a few recipes to get you started:

Chocolate cupcakes with spinach and blueberries

Jessica Seinfeld's recipe for Brownies made with spinach, from her Deceptively Delicious cookbook.

Spinach cake muffins - these ones don't have chocolate to disguise the spinach, but still taste great.

More recipes for baking with vegetables:

Deceptively Delicious: Simple Secrets to Get Your Kids Eating Good Food
Deceptively Delicious: Simple Secrets to Get Your Kids Eating Good Food

Lots of recipes for adding vegetables like spinach into a variety of everyday foods.

 
A baby spinach and feta omelette imakes a healthy and tasty breakfast or lunch.
A baby spinach and feta omelette imakes a healthy and tasty breakfast or lunch. | Source

Add spinach to your eggs

Spinach makes a great addition to various egg dishes, any of which can be served for breakfast, lunch or even dinner.

Here are a few possibilities:

  • spinach omelette
  • spinach frittata
  • Eggs Florentine - similar to Eggs Benedict, but the ham is replaced with either steamed spinach or baby spinach leaves and topped with hollandaise sauce or a creamy cheese sauce.
  • spinach quiche

Spinach pie

Spanakopita, or spinach pie, is a traditional Greek dish, made with a mixture of chopped spinach, feta, onions and eggs cooked in a filo dough pastry.

See the video below for instructions to make your own spanakopita at home.

Recipe for spinach and feta cheese pie (Spanakopita)

Spinach Nutrition Facts

Spinach contains:

  • Vitamins A, C and K, B6, Vitamin E, folate, calcium, beta carotene, lutein, iron and protein
  • 1 cup of raw spinach contains just 7 calories and 1 g of protein

Source: USDA Nutrient Database

Spinach Salad

Spinach is a nutritional powerhouse, and spinach salads are a great way to eat spinach on a more regular basis. Baby spinach leaves are typically used for spinach salads. Traditionally, spinach salads are made with chopped hard-boiled egg, crumbled bacon and a creamy poppy seed dressing. While very tasty, these salads pack quite a few calories and fat.

A healthier way to make a spinach salad is just to use baby spinach leaves in place of lettuce, and add fresh fruit and vegetable toppings of your choice. Good matches include berries, mandarin orange slices, roasted red peppers or cucumbers. Other topping I like to add sometimes are sesame seeds, slivered almonds or walnuts and goat cheese.

Spinach salads are a quick and easy side dish.
Spinach salads are a quick and easy side dish. | Source

Healthy spinach smoothies

Ever since Victoria Boutenko wrote the book The Green Smoothie Revolution," people have been adding leafy greens like spinach and kale to their smoothies in an attempt to improve their health.

Green smoothies may look strange, but they can be delicious and are a great way to add some nutrition to your daily diet.


Which spinach recipe idea do you think you would enjoy the most?

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Other things to do with fresh spinach:

Add a handful of spinach leaves to any of the following for a nutrition boost:

  • stir fries
  • soups
  • stews
  • pasta sauce
  • salads
  • wraps or sandwiches

Comments

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    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 4 years ago from the short journey

      I couldn't vote because I made it in an Italian dish tonight! Thanks for this post. I'm definitely going to be referring back to these recipes. (Pinned to my Ways with Food board.)

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      I love spinach--fresh, cooked, in salads, in pasta, wherever and whatever. I don't have to disguise it since I adore it. When I was about 2, I would eat spinach straight out of cans. haha. Great hub! Many votes!

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 4 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Wow, what a comprehensive round up of spinach recipes! No one will ever have a shortage of ideas for spinach now.

    • adrienne2 profile image

      Adrienne F Manson 4 years ago from Atlanta

      Thank you for sharing such wonderful recipes! I love to find new recipes, and can not wait to try the cream of spinach soup.

    • Riviera Rose profile image

      Riviera Rose 4 years ago from South of France

      I adore spinach and eat it raw from the garden, but am usually fairly boring when cooking it. You've really opened my eyes with this hub, thanks!

    • savingkathy profile image
      Author

      Kathy Sima 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Thanks for the comments, votes and shares everyone! I'm glad you all found this collection of spinach ideas helpful.

    • sgbrown profile image

      Sheila Brown 4 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

      We grow spinach in our garden every year and I am always looking for new ways to cook with it. The spinach feta pasta looks so good! I am going to have to try this! Great hub! Voted up and useful! :)

    • savingkathy profile image
      Author

      Kathy Sima 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Thanks Sheila! I don't usually grow spinach in my garden, but I'm going to try some this year. Do you have any growing tips?

    • ktrapp profile image

      Kristin Trapp 4 years ago from Illinois

      Well - now I'm craving noodles with spinach. I get this dish often at a nearby restaurant and it has Parmesan cheese and fresh tomatoes in it too. I also love spinach salad with strawberries and spinach in omelettes, but never in my life had I had it in a dessert, at least I don't think I have :)

    • DIYmommy profile image

      Julie 4 years ago

      I just love how the rich green color of spinach can make a meal--especially pasta--really jump off the plate aesthetically. I personally love using spinach in my cooking! With a now-3 month old newborn in the home, I can't wait to expose him to it (once he starts to wean off of nursing, of course). Thank you for the great hub!

    • savingkathy profile image
      Author

      Kathy Sima 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      There are worse things you could be craving, Kristin! That pasta dish sounds delicious - simple but good. You'd probably know it if you'd had spinach in a dessert - at least I think you would! Thanks for the visit. :)

      DIYmommy - I hope your son loves spinach as much as you do!

    • Careermommy profile image

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      This was a very useful article, savingkathy. I'm always adding/sneaking spinach into my kids meals, but I never, ever thought of a spinach smoothie. I think I'll have to try it, just to say that I did!

    • savingkathy profile image
      Author

      Kathy Sima 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Thanks Careermommy! Spinach smoothies are SOOO good for you! If you want to disguise the green colour, then blueberries work really well!

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