Spinach Madeline

November 13, 2017

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: The recipe was first published in 1959 by the Junior League of Baton Rouge in its first community cookbook, River Road Recipes I.Food52

Food52 Review: A staple at my Louisiana family's Thanksgiving table. If you can't find jalapeño cheese, substitute with 4 ounces cubed Velveeta cheese and 2 minced jalapeños.Katie Macdonald

Serves: 5 to 6


  • 2 packages frozen chopped spinach
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable liquor (the liquid reserved from cooking the spinach)
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon celery salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon garlic salt
  • salt to taste
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 6 ounces jalapeño cheese, cubed
  • Red pepper to taste
  • Buttered breadcrumbs for topping
In This Recipe


  1. Cook spinach according to directions on package. Drain and reserve liquor.
  2. Melt butter in saucepan over low heat. Add flour, stirring until blended and smooth, but not brown. Add onion, and cook until soft but not brown.
  3. Add liquid slowly, stirring constantly to avoid lumps. Cook until smooth and thick; continue stirring. Add seasonings and cheese, which has been cut into small pieces. Stir until melted.
  4. Combine with cooked spinach. This may be served immediately or put into a casserole and topped with buttered breadcrumbs. The flavor is improved if the latter is done and kept in the refrigerator overnight. This may also be frozen.

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Reviews (7) Questions (1)

7 Reviews

MamaMyers November 16, 2018
What size package of frozen spinach?
Jan P. November 28, 2018
I use the standard sized boxes of frozen spinach.
Alice November 16, 2018
I want to make this for Thanksgiving I’ll make up the day before what’s the process for reheating ?
Jan P. November 16, 2018
This is a holiday tradition in my Louisiana family. I use hot Monterrey Jack cheese. Kraft hasn’t made the jalapeño cheese for eons so don’t bother looking for it.
Andrea Y. December 27, 2017
I made this (doubled) for Christmas dinner - it was delicious! Sometimes creamed spinach recipes can be overly mushy and filling, but this was a nice balance of spinach and creaminess. The "hot pepper cheese" I used and the red pepper flakes gave it a nice bite of spiciness. Will make again!
gandalf November 16, 2017
If you are using the Velveeta and minced jalapenos instead of the jalapeno cheese, do you seed the jalapenos before mincing them?<br /><br />And, any thoughts on the game Saturday night? :>)
David F. December 22, 2018
Yuck!! Velveeta in a thick dip yes.<br /><br />Never in a casserole hun.😊<br />Jalapeno Jack is fine. If you prefer hot spinach use jalapeno's minced.<br />Or a Tbls of red pepper flakes.