Creamed Lemon Zested Spinach

By Jackie DeKnock  ,   

December 21, 2015

Creamed spinach gets some zip from lemon juice and zest.

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  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Cook: 45 mins
  • 10 mins

    45 mins

    55 mins

  • Yields: Serves 6


1 cup milk

1 cup cream (35% or half & half, your call)

¼ teaspoon ground cloves

1 bay leaf

1 teaspoon sea salt

7 slices bacon, crumbled (omit if you prefer)

2 1/2 pounds fresh spinach leaves (there are 6 cups of ‘raw’ spinach leaves in a pound of spinach)

3 tablespoons butter (salted or unsalted, your call)

1 cup yellow onion, finely diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons flour (all-purpose)

1 cup grated Gruyère or Swiss cheese (or your favourite)

2 tablespoons lemon zest

1 tablespoon lemon juice

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon grated cheese for topping


Preheat oven 350 degrees F.

Bring milk, cream, cloves, bay leaf, and pinch of salt to a boil in a saucepan. Reduce heat, simmer10 minutes. Remove from heat, remove bay leaf and cover to keep warm.

Cook the bacon until crisp and then crumble. In the same skillet, use about 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat to cook ½ of the spinach. Once wilted, place in a bowl, season with a pinch of salt. Repeat with remaining spinach and set aside.

Cheese Sauce

Melt butter in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add onions and garlic, cook until soft, but not browned! Add the flour, stirring, until lightly golden (you’ll smell the flour baking…mmm)! Remove from heat cool slightly. Add the hot milk to the flour and bring to a boil. Stir in the cheese, lemon zest, lemon juice, pepper, and crumbled bacon and blend until smooth.

Add spinach to cheese sauce, stir to combine and pour into a buttered oven-friendly baking dish or individual ramekins if you happen to have them! Sprinkle with grated cheese and bake until top is lightly browned -- 15 minutes. Broil to finish if you’d like your cheese bubbling! Serve immediately and enjoy this delicious taste of comfort.

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