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.
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.
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.
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.
Sauté the bacon, onions and chopped spinach.
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.
Give the whole batch a few quick pulses in the food processor to get that “Lawry’s” look.
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
- 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.