The holidays are approaching and Christmas is right around the corner. I wanted to get one last recipe in before Christmas. Today I am sharing with you a recipe for Lighter Creamed Spinach.
Traditionally creamed spinach is made with a bechamel sauce which is made by creating a roux with butter and flour. A bechamel can be made with as much as 5 tablespoons of butter, flour and a lot of milk. This is the base to many rich white sauces such as homemade macaroni and cheese. Although the recipe uses traditional ingredients I tried to cut back as much as possible on the butter and flour.
It is the holidays though. So this means indulging slightly at holiday parties. With this lighter creamed spinach recipe the indulgence comes from the 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese. So delicious! Many recipes for creamed spinach will use cream cheese or heavy cream – this one does not.
So there you have it! I did my best to lighten up a traditional Creamed Spinach recipe for the holidays. This would make an excellent side dish for Christmas parties that your guests would enjoy.
Lighter Creamed Spinach
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 shallot small, finely diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 to 2 cups of milk (2%, reduced fat etc)
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese (grated – start with 1/4 add more if needed)
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
- salt to taste
- 1 tablespoon olive oil (for spinach)
- 2 (16 ounce) bags fresh spinach
- Begin by heating butter in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Add the shallot and garlic until softened, about 5-7 minutes (season with salt and pepper). Reduce heat to low and whisk in flour 1 tablespoon at a time, whisking well about 1 minute to cook out the flour (will be a thick paste). Slowly whisk in the 1 1/2 cups of milk and cook until slightly thickened, watch so this does but burn (may take several minutes). Once slightly thickened stir in the 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese, nutmeg, salt and pepper over low heat.
- While the sauce is cooking roughly chop the spinach. Heat a large saute pan up with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the spinach and saute until the leaves are still bright green but slightly wilted, 1-2 minutes.
- Pour the completed sauce over the spinach and stir until combined. Serve immediately.
Still need a holiday appetizer that will only take 10 minutes?
Try my Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus with Balsamic Glaze.
I would love to see what you are making for the holidays. Follow @HuntersHealthyKitchen on Instagram and tag me in a picture!