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Make our mini Creamed Spinach with frozen spinach for a quick and elegant side dish, perfect for one or two people. This recipe transforms the luxurious, velvety richness of classic creamed spinach from a fancy steakhouse into a comforting, easy-to-prepare meal at home.

Looking for other small batch sides that are ideal for serving one or two people? Take a look at our creamy Green Bean Casserole, cheesy Squash Casserole, or rich Mashed Potatoes. If you’d like to explore side dishes for your holiday table, browse through our Thanksgiving Recipes.

Why You’ll Love This Creamed Spinach Recipe

  • Made with Several Shortcuts: Simplifying traditional steps, this recipe ensures that you can enjoy steakhouse-quality creamed spinach at home without the fuss.
  • No Need to Make a Béchamel Sauce: Cream cheese replaces the need for a flour and milk sauce, delivering a rich and creamy texture with less effort.
  • A Small Batch Recipe: Perfectly portioned for one or two, this recipe ensures no waste, yet is easily doubled if needed.
  • A Crunchy Topping: Breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese add an appealing crunch, elevating the texture of the dish.
a spoonful of creamed spinach over a baking dish.

What Is Creamed Spinach?

Creamed spinach is a sumptuous side dish blending spinach with rich ingredients such as cream cheese, butter, and various cheeses. Often served with main dishes like Beef Tenderloin or Baked Chicken Tenders, it’s often baked until it reaches a perfect texture. The recipe can be created on the stovetop or in the oven, but my preferred approach is oven-baked, offering a delightful cross between traditional creamed spinach and a baked spinach casserole, a creamed spinach casserole.

In our version, we use a 9 or 10-ounce package of frozen spinach and cream cheese to create a creamy and rich dish that isn’t too excessive. If you prefer fresh spinach, you’ll need about 1 pound of fresh spinach that you have steamed, drained, and roughly chopped.

The preparation involves mixing the spinach with cream cheese, butter, cheddar cheese, and seasonings, followed by topping with breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese. The whole casserole is then baked in the oven for roughly 25 minutes, resulting in a delicious and elegant side dish.

Ingredients

creamed spinach ingredients on a kitchen counter.

If you have any ingredients leftover from this easy creamed spinach recipe, check out our Leftover Ingredients Recipe Finder.

  • Spinach: This baked creamed spinach recipe was developed using frozen and thawed spinach. It is convenient and easy to use.
  • Cream cheese: Although I prefer using full-fat cream cheese, you can use a “light” cream cheese or neufchâtel if you’d like. The cream cheese mixes with the spinach better if it is softened. Take the cream cheese out of your refrigerator about 30 minutes before you are ready to use it. Consider using mascarpone or ricotta for a different texture. If you have leftover cream cheese, you might like to use it in a creamy small batch Hot Spinach Dip or in a decadent single serving Cheesecake.
  • Butter: Use salted butter.
  • Cheeses: We add shredded cheddar cheese to the spinach mixture and shredded Parmesan cheese to the creamed spinach topping. I highly recommend shredding the cheeses yourself. Pre-shredded cheese has a coating that affects its ability to melt. 
  • Seasonings: Use salt, black pepper, and ground nutmeg. Nutmeg might sound like a strange ingredient to add but it pairs beautifully with spinach and adds a subtle warmth. You can leave it out or substitute with a pinch of allspice.
  • Breadcrumbs: Use store-bought seasoned breadcrumbs or use our small batch homemade breadcrumbs recipe. For a gluten-free option, consider using gluten-free breadcrumbs.

Recipe Variations

You can experiment with different flavors, textures, and cultural twists. Here are some exciting creamed spinach variations you might want to try:

  • Make Spinach Madeline: This unique dish brings the flavors of Louisiana to your table, offering a spicy twist on classic creamed spinach. Inspired by a 1950s recipe, Spinach Madeline adds some heat for a bold and flavorful experience.
  • Add different toppings: Get creative with your toppings by sprinkling sun-dried tomatoes, cooked and crumbled bacon, fried onions, or sauteed mushrooms over the finished dish. These additions can add a new dimension of flavor and texture.
  • Use different seasonings: Customize your dish’s flavor profile by incorporating smoked paprika, Creole seasoning, or fresh basil. Each option can bring a new and exciting twist to the creamed spinach.
  • Try a different cheese: Swap out the cheddar for pepper jack to create a spicy creamed spinach or utilize rich and creamy options like gruyere or fontina for a luxurious touch.
  • Make a low-carb spinach casserole: Want a gluten-free and low-carb alternative? Simply leave off the breadcrumb topping, and you’ll still have a delightful and hearty dish.
  • Make pasta and spinach casserole: Turn this side dish into a satisfying main course by tossing the baked spinach gratin with buttered noodles. It’s a complete meal that’s rich in flavors and perfect for one or two to enjoy.
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How To Make Creamed Spinach

These step-by-step photos and instructions help you visualize how to make Creamed Spinach For Two. See the recipe box below for ingredient amounts and full recipe instructions.

  1. Heat the oven to 350°F (177°C).
  2. Thaw the frozen spinach: Thaw the spinach in a strainer or colander under warm running water. Continually turn the leaves to ensure all the ice melts. Press or squeeze the thawed spinach to remove excess water.

Pro Tip: There are a few other ways to thaw frozen spinach: You can thaw it in the microwave oven by placing the frozen spinach in a microwave-safe bowl, and use the defrost setting to thaw the frozen spinach. You can also leave the frozen spinach in the refrigerator overnight to thaw completely.

  1. Add the other ingredients: After you’ve squeezed all of the excess water out of the spinach, place the spinach in a medium-sized bowl. Add softened cream cheese and stir well to combine.
frozen and thawed spinach with cream cheese in a mixing bowl.
  1. Stir in shredded cheddar cheese, melted butter, ground nutmeg, salt, and black pepper.
spinach, cheese, and seasoning in a mixing bowl.
  1. Transfer the spinach mixture to a lightly buttered small baking dish.

Pro Tip: Use a 4×6-inch baking dish that has a base area of 24 square inches. You can also use a 5×5-inch baking dish with a base area of 25 square inches or a 6×6-inch dish which will yield a thinner spinach casserole (and may cook more quickly). You can even use a 6.5-inch cast iron skillet.

spinach casserole in a small baking dish on a kitchen counter.
  1. Sprinkle breadcrumbs and shredded Parmesan cheese over the top.

Pro Tip: Place the baking dish on a rimmed baking sheet to catch any possible spills.

an unbaked spinach gratin in a baking dish.
  1. Bake: Bake the spinach casserole for 20-25 minutes, until the topping is golden. Cool for 5 minutes before eating.
a small batch of creamy baked spinach in a red dish.

Serving Suggestions

Expert Tips

  • Read through the entire recipe before beginning. This easy creamed spinach recipe comes together quickly. Be sure to read through the recipe and the Ingredient Notes and gather your ingredients before starting.
  • Use the correct baking dish: The success of this mini creamed spinach recipe depends on using the right baking dish. We recommend using a 4×6-inch baking dish that has a base area of 24 square inches. You can also use a 5×5-inch baking dish with a base area of 25 square inches or a 6×6-inch dish which will yield a thinner spinach casserole (and may cook more quickly). You can even use a 6.5-inch cast iron skillet.
  • Thaw and squeeze out as much water from the spinach to prevent sogginess: Ensuring that the spinach is properly thawed and drained will help maintain the perfect texture in your baked creamed spinach dish. Sogginess can ruin the rich and creamy consistency you’re aiming for, so this step is crucial.
  • Use softened cream cheese for easy mixing: Softened cream cheese will blend more smoothly with the other ingredients, creating a uniform and creamy texture throughout the dish. If the cream cheese is too firm, it may result in lumps or uneven mixing. Allowing it to soften at room temperature before mixing is a small step that makes a big difference in the final product.

Other Single Serving And Small Batch Holiday Side Dishes

Looking to create a memorable feast without the leftovers? These single serving and small batch holiday side dishes are perfect for intimate gatherings or solo indulgence. Pair them with our easy-to-follow turkey recipes and finish off with a delightful mini dessert to craft the perfect holiday meal.

Side Dishes:

Make a Complete Meal by Serving with One of Our Easy Turkey Recipes:

Don’t Forget Dessert! Include a Traditional Holiday Dessert with Your Meal:

These dishes cater to those looking for smaller portion sizes without sacrificing flavor, offering an array of options to suit every taste and dietary preference. Enjoy the holidays on your terms, with recipes tailored to you.

Frequently Asked Questions

What size baking dish should I use when making this small creamed spinach?

I’m mentioning this again because it is SO IMPORTANT. We recommend using a 4×6-inch baking dish that has a base area of 24 square inches. You can also use a 5×5-inch baking dish with a base area of 25 square inches or a 6×6-inch dish which will yield a thinner creamed spinach casserole (and may cook more quickly)

How do I store leftover creamed spinach?

Store any leftovers in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 5 days.

Is creamed spinach gluten free?

If you leave off the breadcrumbs, this baked spinach dish is absolutely gluten-free.

Is creamed spinach keto?

To make keto creamed spinach, leave off the breadcrumbs. This makes an incredibly delicious low carb casserole and is perfect for those following a low carb diet.

Ways To Use Leftover Ingredients

If you have any ingredients leftover from this recipe, check out our Leftover Ingredients Recipe Finder or you might like to consider using them in any of these single serving and small batch recipes:

If you’ve tried this mini creamed spinach recipe or any recipe on One Dish Kitchen please let me know how you liked it by rating the recipe and telling me about it in the comment section below.

If you take a picture please tag us on Instagram (@onedishkitchen) we’d love to see it!


Your Cooking For One Source
Because you’re worth it

Small Batch Creamed Spinach

5 from 2 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
Made with frozen spinach, this small batch creamed spinach is an elegant side dish that's extra creamy and cooks quickly. It's the ideal size for one or two people to enjoy.

Equipment

Ingredients 
 

  • 1 (10-ounce) package of frozen spinach
  • 2 ounces cream cheese , softened
  • 3 tablespoons salted butter , melted
  • ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • teaspoon salt
  • teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons grated or shredded Parmesan cheese
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Instructions 

  • Heat the oven to 350°F (177°C).
  • Thaw the spinach in a strainer or colander under warm running water. Continually turn the leaves to ensure all the ice melts. Press or squeeze the thawed spinach to remove excess water.
    Pro Tip: There are a few other ways to thaw frozen spinach: You can thaw it in the microwave oven by placing the frozen spinach in a microwave-safe bowl, and use the defrost setting to thaw the frozen spinach. You can also leave the frozen spinach in the refrigerator overnight to thaw completely.
  • After you've squeezed all of the excess water out of the spinach, place the spinach in a medium-sized bowl. Add softened cream cheese and stir well to combine.
  • Stir in 3 tablespoons of melted butter, shredded cheddar cheese, ground nutmeg, salt, and black pepper.
  • Transfer the spinach mixture to a lightly buttered small baking dish.
    Pro Tip: Use a 4×6-inch baking dish that has a base area of 24 square inches. You can also use a 5×5-inch baking dish with a base area of 25 square inches or a 6×6-inch dish which will yield a thinner spinach casserole (and may cook more quickly). You can even use a 6.5-inch cast iron skillet.
  • Sprinkle breadcrumbs and shredded Parmesan cheese over the top. Place the baking dish on a rimmed baking sheet to catch any possible spills.
  • Bake the spinach casserole for 20-25 minutes, until the topping is golden. Cool for 5 minutes before eating.

Notes

Expert Tips
    • Read through the entire recipe before beginning. This easy creamed spinach recipe comes together quickly. Be sure to read through the recipe and the Ingredient Notes and gather your ingredients before starting.
    • Use the correct baking dish: The success of this recipe depends on using the right baking dish. We recommend using a 4×6-inch baking dish that has a base area of 24 square inches. You can also use a 5×5-inch baking dish with a base area of 25 square inches or a 6×6-inch dish which will yield a thinner spinach casserole (and may cook more quickly). You can even use a 6.5-inch cast iron skillet.
    • Thaw and squeeze out as much water from the spinach to prevent sogginess: Ensuring that the spinach is properly thawed and drained will help maintain the perfect texture in your creamed spinach dish. Sogginess can ruin the rich and creamy consistency you’re aiming for, so this step is crucial.
    • Use softened cream cheese for easy mixing: Softened cream cheese will blend more smoothly with the other ingredients, creating a uniform and creamy texture throughout the dish. If the cream cheese is too firm, it may result in lumps or uneven mixing. Allowing it to soften at room temperature before mixing is a small step that makes a big difference in the final product.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving, Calories: 459kcal, Carbohydrates: 14g, Protein: 17g, Fat: 38g, Saturated Fat: 23g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 9g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 106mg, Sodium: 688mg, Potassium: 517mg, Fiber: 0.5g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 1208IU, Vitamin C: 0.3mg, Calcium: 251mg, Iron: 1mg

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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5 from 2 votes (1 rating without comment)

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1 Comment

  1. J. Hegyi says:

    Good recipe.