Creamed Spinach and Parsnips

October  6, 2014
15 Ratings
Photo by Alpha Smoot
  • Prep time 15 minutes
  • Cook time 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Serves 2 to 4
Author Notes

There’s something about parsnips roasting in the oven that smells like Thanksgiving. Accentuate its sweet nutty flavor with butter and honey and add to creamed spinach, and you’ve got a sweet, salty, and perfectly comforting combination of flavors that’s perfect for Thanksgiving or any fall meal. —Feed Me Dearly

Test Kitchen Notes

Feed Me Dearly's wonderful Creamed Spinach And Parsnips is just perfect for a holiday meal -- or any meal really. It's creamy and comforting, and I love the addition of parsnips, which take this classic creamed spinach to another level. The parsnips are buttery and a bit sweet, and they make a great addition both in texture and flavor. I roasted the parsnips at 375° F, and they got nicely crisp. Every year I add one new recipe to my Thanksgiving menu, and this year it will be this fantastic vegetable dish. —sdebrango

What You'll Need
  • 3 parsnips
  • 3 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 large bunch (or 2 medium bunches) of spinach
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 cup half and half or cream
  • 1 pinch nutmeg
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Clean, peel, and slice your parsnips into 1-inch batons.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400° F. Par-cook the parsnips until almost cooked through in either a pot of simmering salted water for approximately 20 to 30 mins, or with a few inches of water in a slow cooker set to high heat (I cooked mine this way and it took about 3 hours).
  3. When the parsnips are done, lay them in a single layer on a baking sheet and drizzle with a 2 tablespoons each of melted butter and honey.
  4. Roast the parsnips in the preheated oven for 20 to 30 minutes until they start to get crispy and brown.
  5. While the parsnips are roasting, clean the leaves from a large bunch of spinach and remove the tough stems. Roughly chop the spinach, blanch it in salted boiling water until bright green (less than 15 seconds), and then run it under cold water to set the color. Squeeze out the liquid and set aside.
  6. Chop a small onion, and sautée it in some olive oil and butter (1 tablespoon each) on medium heat. When the onion is becoming translucent, add a tablespoon of flour and cook for another minute.
  7. While the flour is cooking down, heat a cup of half and half in the microwave or on the stovetop for a minute, and then stir it slowly into the onions, whisking frequently to make sure there are no flour lumps.
  8. Cook the half and half down for a few minutes until it's starting to thicken, then add a pinch of nutmeg, salt and pepper, and taste for seasoning.
  9. Add your parsnips and spinach, heat through, and serve.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Michelle
  • Zara Gonzalez Hoang
    Zara Gonzalez Hoang
  • Vivian Norton
    Vivian Norton
  • juliunruly
  • miriamnz

27 Reviews

Amy O. December 25, 2019
This was very good; my Mom especially liked it. :) I skipped the step of blanching the spinach; it didn't seem necessary.
Michelle November 30, 2019
This dish was the bomb.com. I used red Swiss chard. Dreamy....
Ari November 24, 2018
Fantastic dish! I used Swiss chard, instead of spinach, since that's what was fresh at the farmers' market in NYC around Thanksgiving. Super substitute. I'm inclined to think perhaps even better than had I used spinach...
Zara G. January 31, 2017
I made this into a sort of main dish by adding some sausage and serving it over Israeli couscous. Might sound a bit strange but it was delicious.
Sophia L. November 3, 2016
Could you par-cook the parsnips the day before? Would like to do this for my Thanksgiving Dinner!
carole G. November 3, 2016
I don't cook them till done that way. I just simmer for about 15 minutes before refridgeration.
Evan February 8, 2016
Do you think frozen spinach would work here or would it just be mush? (in a bad way? mush can still be good)
Vivian N. December 30, 2015
Well... I made this dish on Christmas Day for my family and friends (I was the vegetable provider!) I followed it to the letter except for adding chopped carrots. It was extraordinary! So much so that guests were more into seconds of it than of prime rib, Yorkshire pudding, and vichyssoise! I have NEVER scored such a vegetable triumph before, and I earnestly and gratefully thank the creators of this recipe!
juliunruly December 25, 2015
My parsnips became fully cooked and borderline mushy just after the par-boiling step :/
Susan C. April 22, 2015
I made this again, using chicken broth instead of cream for the sauce, which was delicious and a bit lighter. Remarkably similar in taste.
Susan C. April 19, 2015
I used large but tender, over-wintered parsnips (no woody core) and sautéed them in a bit of butter until tender. Moved them to a plate and used the same pan to sauté the onions, make the sauce, etc. Delicious, and almost a 1-pan dish.
miriamnz April 11, 2015
If it serves 4 then it is 290 calories per serve.
carole G. November 18, 2014
This was perfect. I had to restrain myself from eating all of it at one sitting. Used the remainder as a pizza topping with chicken and ranch. It was amazing
Feed M. November 19, 2014
Fantastic, glad to hear it!
lp November 4, 2014
Would you be able to make this in advance and re-heat?
Feed M. November 6, 2014
Yes, absolutely! I make a version of this every Thanksgiving and make it 2 days in advance. If you're going to reheat it, make sure you use leafy spinach- I've used packaged baby spinach and reheated the dish but it doesn't hold up as well (the spinach falls apart a little)- still good, but the texture won't be as toothsome.
Angie S. October 28, 2014
The picture above the recipe has corn in it...?
Feed M. October 28, 2014
It's actually a Food 52 image- but I'm assuming that it's just the onion. There's no corn in the recipe...
Lauren K. October 28, 2014
I was at the office the day they made it (and ate a lot of it) and can confirm that it is the onions! But if you added corn, I wouldn't be mad.
Feed M. October 28, 2014
Too funny Lauren, I agree- corn could fit the bill as well! ;)
cindy October 26, 2014
Is it necessary to parboil the parsnips? Why not just roast them only? I have had luck with carrots and parsnips in this manner before.
Feed M. October 26, 2014
I find that parsnips have a woodier core than carrots so I like to parboil them so that their exteriors don't dry out before the insides are tender. But feel free to skip this step if you've had success with it before!
cindy October 26, 2014
OK, that helps. Thanks.
Emily |. October 25, 2014
Honey-butter roasted parsnips sound amazing. Looking forward to trying this one!
Lauren K. October 21, 2014
I am eating this right now andddd it is amazing. Thank you for sharing it!
Feed M. October 21, 2014
Fabulous! So glad you're enjoying it :)
Feed M. October 13, 2014
Hi, Suzanne, thanks for the question. I roast the parsnips at 350 degrees.