Famous Lawry’s Creamed Spinach

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Lawry’s creamed spinach has become an iconic side dish that pairs perfectly with prime rib or any good cut of beef. The recipe features fresh, tender spinach leaves, cooked to perfection and then smothered in a velvety, silky cream sauce.

Lawrys creamed spinach in a serving dish.

About Lawry’s Creamed Spinach Recipe

Steakhouse creamed spinach is a beloved side dish in the world of fine dining and home-cooked comfort food alike. What sets Lawry’s Creamed Spinach recipe apart, and earned it such acclaim, is a combination of tradition and rich, indulgent flavor. 

Lawry’s The Prime Rib, a renowned restaurant with a legacy spanning over eight decades, is the birthplace of this sumptuous dish. Its heritage adds a sense of nostalgia and authenticity to the recipe, making it feel like a cherished culinary secret passed down through generations.

The recipe, or some variation of it, is used at many steakhouses, such as the popular creamed spinach at House of Prime Rib in San Francisco. 

My mom has been making Lawry’s Creamed Spinach for Christmas dinner, to go with our prime rib, ever since I can remember. She got the recipe from a little spiral-bound cookbook called, Ford Treasury of Favorite Recipes from Famous Eating Places, published in 1959.

Recipe for Lawry's creamed spinach from Mom's original cookbook.

When I worked for a British prime rib restaurant in the 80’s, creamed spinach was the main accompaniment to our prime rib dinners. It was always our most popular side dish, along with  Lawry’s creamed corn. Both of these side dishes also go perfectly with Leg of Lamb with Mint Sauce or Bourbon Brown Sugar Ham.

How Do You Make Creamed Spinach?

If you can’t get to Lawry’s Prime Rib restaurant, this is absolutely the best recipe for creamed spinach. It’s so good, it’s downright sinful! 

The only change I’ve made to the original Lawry’s recipe is to add 1/8 teaspoon of nutmeg. This is an integral component in béchamel, and an excellent companion to spinach, giving it that certain, je ne sais quoi. 

To make Lawry’s Creamed Spinach, start by dicing onions and bacon.

Diced onions and bacon on a cutting board.

Chop up cooked spinach (you could use frozen chopped spinach to save a step). A pound looks like a TON of spinach…but you know how spinach cooks down.

Chopped spinach and knife on a cutting board.

Sauté the bacon, onions and chopped spinach.

Spinach, onions and bacon in a pan.

In a separate pan, make the cream sauce. It takes just a few minutes. The cream sauce contains 2 tablespoons of flour, and you can totally substitute gluten-free flour with no difference in flavor.

Add the cream sauce to the bacon and spinach.

Spinach with cream sauce.

Give the whole batch a few quick pulses in the food processor to get that “Lawry’s” look.

Creamed spinach in a serving dish with a spoon.

No matter how much of this creamed spinach we make, it’s never enough. Make it the day before and reheat if you want to have a fuss-free dinner. It tastes even better the next day!

Lawry's "famous" creamed spinach.

Lawry’s Famous Creamed Spinach

Lawry's Prime Rib restaurant's creamy spinach recipe from the 50s!
4.99 from 52 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 6
Calories 154 kcal



  • Blanch spinach in batches by cooking it in salted, boiling water for a few seconds, then plunging it in ice water to stop the cooking. (To save time, use frozen, chopped spinach!)
  • Squeeze out excess liquid and chop.
  • In a medium-sized skillet over medium heat, saute bacon 2 or 3 minutes. Add diced onion and continue to cook until onion is translucent another 3 or 4 minutes. Add garlic, spinach and seasonings and cook another minute.
  • In a medium saucepan, heat butter until melted. Add flour, stirring with a spoon until flour is incorporated and begins to turn slightly golden, about 2 minutes. Whisk in milk and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook until sauce begins to thicken about 3 minutes.
  • Add cream sauce to the spinach mixture.
  • In a food processor pulse spinach 3 or 4 times. It should retain its texture. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.
  • Can be made a day ahead of time.


Serving: 1gCalories: 154kcalCarbohydrates: 9gProtein: 6gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 24mgSodium: 176mgPotassium: 531mgFiber: 2gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 7271IUVitamin C: 23mgCalcium: 125mgIron: 2mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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    1. Good question Mary, I find with fresh spinach it cooks down so much! I would probably use a pound of frozen, which might end up being more than a pound of fresh. It’s so good, though, you won’t mind having leftovers!

      1. Being married in the 1950’s, my parent’s had a very small home wedding, just my grandparents, aunts, and great grandmothers. For their wedding dinner my mom’s parents took everyone to Lawry’s the Primerib Restaurant. My parents made that their anniversary destination throughout their 60 years together. I still remember the first time my brothers and I were included. At the time it was considered a very fancy restaurant. When I tasted that creamed spinach I thought I had died and gone to heaven! Years later, when Lawry’s opened their California Kitchen, my mom bought a book of Lawry’s recipes…and we’ve been making that creamed spinach for many years. In that recipe it calls for 2 10oz. boxes of frozen spinach. I have made it with fresh and frozen…I find frozen much eaiser to work with when cooking for a large group.

        1. What a wonderful story! I worked in an English restaurant for many years and this was incredibly popular…maybe so many memories attached to the flavor! I agree with the frozen spinach! I’ve made it both ways and you can certainly make a LOT more using frozen spinach.

        1. but is it? a bag of frozen spinach might weigh 16 ounces, but how much of that is ice? Regardless, an ounce or two on either side won’t affect the recipe.

  1. What do you do with the bacon grease? Has anyone tried a double batch? I salted the water I boiled the Spinach with the Lawry’s seasoned salt. I’m going to cook the bacon to be crunchy and drain the grease then add the Onion…

  2. this is the correct recipe for Lawry’s creamed spinach direct from the site.
    Lawry’s Famous Creamed Spinach
    Prep Time 20 min Cook Time 20 min Total Time 40 min Servings: 4 -6
    Lawry’s Prime Rib restaurant’s creamy spinach.
    2 pkgs. (10 oz. each) frozen chopped spinach, thawed
    4 slices of bacon diced
    2 clove of garlic
    1 small onion minced
    2 T flour
    1 teaspoon Lawry’s seasoned salt
    1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
    2 cup milk
    Drain spinach well and squeeze out excess moisture with hands; chop finely and set aside. Fry bacon in heavy skillet until crisp; remove, drain and chop. Sauté onion and garlic in bacon drippings; add flour, Seasoned Salt and pepper and blend thoroughly. Slowly add milk, stirring constantly until thickened. Add spinach and bacon; heat.

    1. Hi Connie,
      As you can tell by the photo in my post, I got the recipe directly from an old cookbook from the 50s. That recipe was from Lawry’s. I’m sure that in subsequent years it was updated for frozen spinach,(which you can see I included as an alternative to fresh).

  3. Just went last night in I saw some little brownish yellowish round seed-like things in the spinach. Could it be mustard seeds?

    1. Hi Lisa, sorry i’m just responding. I was in Europe for 2 weeks. I’m not sure what the yellowish things were on your spinach…Maybe the spinach sprouted?

  4. 5 stars
    Lived in Southern Calif in the early 70’s, just married. Got to go to this FANTASTIC restaurant, Gullivers Prime Rib. Sadly, no longer in business. They ONLY served Prime Rib! Their creamed corn & creamed spinach side dishes – and the Yorkshire pudding – were to die for! This recipe is the closest I’ve gotten to that heavenly dish! THANK YOU SO MUCH! Every year for Solstice I do this traditional dinner. Usually have at least 10 guests for dinner – one year had 18. This year, with COVID, it’ll just be us 2, but I’m making up plates of left overs to take to friends & elderly who won’t be able to enjoy with us this year.
    I’m so glad I found this recipe, my past creamed spinach recipes just never made the cut. This one does!

  5. 5 stars
    Delicious! I used turky bacon–still really good– I might even add a fifth piece next time!
    I tossed the stemed spinach and the others all into the food processer and mixed it all

  6. Great Recipe! Mom had this book when I was a kid too. Poured over every recipe and location aplanning to visit every spot when ‘I grew up’. I only got to one I think as most were long gone. Still have the book.

  7. I’m so grateful to see this recipe Lawry’s was a special place to me as a child and my husband and I even had our rehearsal dinner at Lawry’s Prime Rib. I’ve been searching for the original recipe, not just a copycat recipe. I agree with you about the nutmeg. Can’t wait to make this!

      1. My folks were married in 1950 and had their rehearsal dinner at the original Lawry’s (across the street) . We took them for their 25th and the same waitress served us. We took them on their 50th and as memorable as ever. The same waitress sadly wasn’t there on that last visit. Lawry’s has always been willing to share recipes. They used to provide post cards with the recipes before the internet. No one does it better!

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