Spiced Spinach with Walnuts Recipe

A spinach recipe you should try. It's an adaptable dish that downshifts seamlessly from main attraction to supporting role depending on the quantity of leftovers at hand. The jist: a hot pan filled with all manner of things that work well with spinach - toasted walnuts, shredded mint, lemon, a host of spices, and a good amount of leeks that are cooked until silky tender.

Spiced Spinach with Walnuts

Simply stated, this is a spinach recipe you should try. It's an adaptable dish that downshifts seamlessly from main attraction to supporting role depending on the quantity of leftovers at hand. The jist: a hot pan filled with all manner of things that work well with spinach - toasted walnuts, shredded mint, lemon, a host of spices, and a good amount of leeks that are cooked until silky tender. Loaded with spinach greens and healthful spices like turmeric and cumin - this is the sort of preparation I favor, in part, because it adds such a nutritional punch to my day while still being interesting, satisfying, and easy to pull together.

A Good Spinach RecipeA Good Spinach RecipeA Good Spinach Recipe

Most of you realize, the majority of my cooking never makes it onto this site. I general share the recipes I love most, the gems, the one's I'm confident you might enjoy taking for a spin in your own kitchens. This fits the bill - I prepared it twice this week and loved the possibilities the leftovers inspired. This spinach became the stuffing in both parathas and calzones. It was added to a bowl of brown rice and then topped with a single egg omelette, finely shredded. And then again, topped with pan-fried tofu as a main dish, but freshly steamed tempeh would have been another nice option.

Before I go, a quick thank you - I was so happy to see how many of you made the broccoli soup last week! It's always exciting for me to see the recipes I feature here make the jump into your kitchens (the whole point, really). Hope you enjoy this one as much. xo -h

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A Good Spinach Recipe

Be sure to wash the leeks well of dirt and grit after slicing them. You can make quick work of it by using a colander.

3 tablespoons sunflower oil, ghee, or clarified butter
3/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
4 large leeks, trimmed & thinly sliced
3/4 teaspoon chile flakes, or more to taste
3/4 teaspoon cumin seeds, lightly crushed
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
40 fresh mint leaves
4-5 massive handfuls of spinach, very roughly chopped
1 lemon, cut into wedges
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted
1/2 cup crumbled feta, fresh ricotta, or fresh paneer

In a large skillet or pot heat the oil over medium-high heat. Stir in the salt and leeks, and cook until tender - just barely starting to brown, about 7-10 minutes. Stir in the chile flakes, cumin seeds, turmeric, and oregano, and cook for another 30 seconds or so. Add the mint leaves and the spinach, in batches if needed, stirring constantly. Cook until the spinach begins to wilt, and brightens - just a minute or so. Squeeze the juice of one of the lemon wedges into the spinach, stir well, taste, and adjust with more salt if necessary. Serve topped with the walnuts and crumbled cheese.

Serves 6.

Prep time: 10 minutes - Cook time: 12 minutes

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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Spinach is coming in abundance in our CSA, and a good friend just dropped off vacation leftovers at our house, including half a tub of ricotta. Will Do!


There's something really astounding about walnuts and spinach (or anything green, really).


The spices made this unlike any other spinach dish I've ever had. LOVE the chili flakes! My only disappointment? It did not serve 6... I ate half of it!


I really love walnuts and will be trying this recipe soon, although I just cannot find feta cheese here in Busan, so it will have to wait until I cross the ocean back to the states. Thanks for sharing it! DH

Derek the Zen Chef

(Forgive me if this is the second time you've received this. I tried to post this last night and the server failed - twice. ) I did make this spinach dish last night. If there was a food hall of fame this recipe should be in it. It was as wonderful as I thought it would be. Honestly Heidi, I don't know how you get your creative juices flowing, but it is very much appreciated. I will be making this dish many times over.

HS: Thanks Kelly! So happy you enjoyed it. And thanks for checking back in.

Kelly Turnbull

Oh my god what an awesome dish. We enjoyed it last night and was immediately added to my favorite recipes book. Thanks Heidi for the inspiration and amazing tastes.


This looks great. You know, is the same with me. I post a recipe per week or so, but I'm cooking all the time. I trust this one is great!

Angel Reyes

Love it - the recipes that are the biggest 'keepers' in our house are those ones with many leftover possibilities


Had almonds,so used those. Fantastic.Making again to top pizza tonite,kids loved it to!


Made this tonight, and it was so delicious! I omitted the cheese, and added some sweet potatoes because I had to use them up. Loved the turmeric and cumin seeds with the mint. Next time, I'm thinking about using some buttery cashews to top it off. I can also imagine this being a great garnish for some creamy soup. Thanks for giving me a new favorite! I also baked up your Bay Leaf Pound Cake to bring to a work party tomorrow. Very excited to try it, and my house smells terrific!


I would never had thought to combine all these ingredients but I would love to try this!

Kerrie Peacock

Threw in some mushrooms with the leeks and topped my spaghetti squash with it. Yum. Thanks Heidi!


We love spinach at my house! This recipe is a must.

Sammi @Sammi Sunshine

I love how simple and delicious this is! I might toss it with a handful of linguine and call it dinner. :)


Healthy, and refreshing, you can't ask for anything better than this!


Will prepare tonight but already can tell that I LOVE this spinach dish and the variations are perfect for an aging single diner. The broccoli coconut soup is also a new favorite of mine. Before that, the yoga bowl was a revelation: never cooked mungs before, and pairing it w/ quinoa was wonderful. Your shared gems are very appreciated Heidi!


Just made it for the family. Used chard instead of spinach. Sauteed tofu with ginger and soy as accompaniment. No rice. Everyone had seconds! None left for lunch tomorrow. You have an avid reader here in Paris, Heidi. Next time you visit we should dine!


I love sauteed spinach...I can't wait to try this version a little more exotic than what I usually create. Thank you...happy nesting!


Pinned! I cannot wait to try this, perhaps if I get my hands on some spinach at the farm market, today. I was blown away by the Deborah Madison Lentils. I made them last week as well as your turnip greens tart (but with beet greens) which was incredibly impressive (linked and pictured in a greens-washing post on my blog). Inspiration at every corner. Did you make paratha dough?


Oh goodness gracious.

bev @ bevcooks

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