Make Ahead

Spinach Ricotta Pie

March 15, 2011
1 Ratings
  • Serves 6
Author Notes

This comes from my mother's collection of Pennsylvania Dutch recipes. From its pristine condition, I doubt she ever made this pie. Like so many home cooks, myself included, she had a large file of must-try-this-sometime recipes. I played with the preparation, added lemon zest and nutmeg, and opted for Gruyere instead of the "sharp cheese" listed in the original ingredients. I baked it in my Mom's pie plate that she had in her kitchen before I was born, many moons ago. - Lizthechef —Lizthechef

Test Kitchen Notes

Lizthechef’s Spinach Ricotta Pie is oozing with homespun charm. With just a few wonderful tweaks, she’s churned out some really great flavors. Without overpowering it, the Gruyere lends a nice assertive contrast to the more mellow ricotta and the subtle warmth from the nutmeg is balanced nicely by her clever addition of Meyer lemon zest. I did blind bake the crust for about 10 minutes before pouring the filling in and it turned out nice and flaky. Make sure to use a superior whole-milk ricotta, as an average one might be easily lost here. - TiggyBee —TiggyBee

What You'll Need
  • Crust
  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup cold unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons cold, low-fat buttermilk
  • Filling
  • 1 6-ounce package baby spinach, roughly chopped
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
  • kosher salt
  • ground white pepper
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 pound ricotta
  • 1/2 cup Gruyere, grated
  • 1/2 cup low-fat sour cream
  • Dash freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon Meyer lemon zest
  • Sweet paprika
  1. Crust
  2. Combine the white and wholewheat flour. Using 2 knives, cut in the butter. Add the buttermilk.
  3. Pull the dough into a ball. Chill in fridge for 1 hour.
  1. Filling
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  3. In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until limp, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the flour and stir to coat the onions. Cook 2 minutes. Add the spinach and cook, stirring, until the spinach is wilted and bright green.
  5. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper.
  6. In a large bowl, beat the eggs. Add ricotta, cheese, sour cream, nutmeg and lemon zest. Mix well and set aside.
  7. Roll out chilled dough and place in a 9-inch pie plate.
  8. Add the spinach-onion mixture to the ricotta filling. Pour the pie filling into the crust. Smooth with spatula or the back of a large spoon. Sprinkle with paprika.
  9. Bake 45 minutes. Allow pie to rest for 15 minutes before cutting and serving.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Wicko
  • Phyllis Byrne
    Phyllis Byrne
  • Lizthechef
  • pauljoseph
  • TiggyBee

54 Reviews

Wicko April 23, 2013
We loved this. Really nice flavors and fluffy texture. Used a whole wheat pie crust which worked well.
Phyllis B. February 22, 2013
I am so pleased to know that somehow this will comfort you . Cooking with love from the heart always make everything taste better. I made this dish for a very special co- worker who is a marathon runner and vegatarian. She always has a kind word for others and we will miss her when she retires next week.
Lizthechef February 22, 2013
What else can I say? Thank you.
Phyllis B. February 22, 2013
This is a wonderful recipe. The addition of lemon zest is the perfect touch. I made it for an event at work. Every crumb was eaten and several people asked for the recipe.
Lizthechef February 22, 2013
You have no idea how this comforts me, as we have a dear friend dying and I was wracking my brain for a dish to deliver to the family, of assorted eating issues. I mean it. This weekend it will be delivered, thanks to you.
Lizthechef September 19, 2011
Making this for our supper and just picked up a mistake. In step 7 I neglected to say "Add the spinach-onion mixture to the ricotta filling". The you pour the pie filling into the crust. And I think blind-baking the crust is a good idea as well...
Lizthechef September 19, 2011
It worked fine - thanks to TiggyBee for suggesting to blind bake it - I did 10 minutes covered with foil and pie weights, then 10 minutes "open" at 375 degrees. I threw in fresh dill instead of basil and we liked that.
Nonnamia March 24, 2011
Sounds real good ...I'll do a test on this one!!!!!...
Lizthechef March 24, 2011
Great - please let me know how you like it - or not. Any plain pie crust will work, if you have a favorite...
pauljoseph March 21, 2011
Very good recipe will try
Lizthechef March 21, 2011
This is quite a compliment. Thank you!
TiggyBee March 19, 2011
I love this three (or is it six?) ways till Sunday. What does that mean anyhow? Love it!!
Lizthechef March 19, 2011
Thank you, TB, don't know the origin of the saying but it's sweet.
Daphne March 19, 2011
Pretty picture, looks like spring! Will take up to Napa next month where there are lots of little hungry mouths to feed : ) a great addition anytime of the day, thanks Liz!
Lizthechef March 19, 2011
Thanks, Daphne, and best regards to you and your lovely family!
Prue B. March 18, 2011
Gorgeous! I'm making it tomorrow. Thank you.
Lizthechef March 18, 2011
Thank you, Prue, I am too, trying it with Greek yogurt instead of the low-fat sour cream. Please let us all know how it worked - or not - for you.
monkeymom March 18, 2011
Beautiful Liz! Your photo is so gorgeous with the spinach leaves swirling around on top...did you save some whole spinach leaves for the top? or does is still look that way even when roughly chopped? I'd just love for mine to turn out as beautifully....
Lizthechef March 18, 2011
Um, you caught me, mm...I forgot to chop them at all! Maybe just as well?
monkeymom March 18, 2011
I'm sure it is just as lovely and tasty either way :) I look forward to trying it!
Lizthechef March 17, 2011
A big thank you to whoever fixed my photos so that one doesn't view my mother's empty pie pan instead of the pie.
lapadia March 17, 2011
Beautiful, love it! :)
Lizthechef March 17, 2011
Thanks. You remind me, perhaps because your recipes are so precise, to edit that the baby spinach should be roughly chopped. Hope I'm not too late.
lapadia March 18, 2011 got in your "rough chopped"! :)
TasteFood March 17, 2011
Beautiful photo and recipe Liz! Spinach + Gruyere is a winner for me!
Lizthechef March 17, 2011
Thanks so very much, dear TasteFood.
fiveandspice March 17, 2011
Yum! This looks awesome! Something sort of similar was one of my favorite things to make in college. Love the addition of the Meyer lemon zest.
Lizthechef March 17, 2011
Thanks so much - I tend to use Meyer lemons and/or their zest in just about anything I can.
TheWimpyVegetarian March 16, 2011
I love love love this, Liz!! I'm defnitely making it! It looks great! And I really LOVE the photos.
Lizthechef March 16, 2011
Hey thanks, Susan, we finished it up for lunch today. I might try Greek yogurt instead of the low-fat sour cream next round. I also made it without any salt and thought the lemon gave enough "spark" to the dish.
TheWimpyVegetarian March 16, 2011
Using the lemon is a great idea. It's such a challenge to find ways to get around salt, but I'm convined it can be done and still have food taste great.
cookerT March 16, 2011
I've got this pegged for Easter! Thanks!
Lizthechef March 16, 2011
Thanks everybody, for your photo tips and supportive comments!
Oui, C. March 16, 2011
This one sounds absolutely perfect! Love the picture of the empty pie could it be any other way with a recipe this good? - S
lastnightsdinner March 16, 2011
You're certainly going to help me get my recommended intake of spinach with your great recipes, Liz - this sounds fabulous!
gingerroot March 16, 2011
What a lovely pie to celebrate spring!