Pete and Sam’s Italian Spinach Recipe: A Classic Dish with a Flavorful Twist

Craving a tasty and healthy side dish that’s bursting with flavor? Look no further than Pete and Sam’s Italian Spinach recipe. This classic dish combines the rich, earthy flavors of fresh spinach with a savory blend of garlic, cheese, and spices, making it a perfect accompaniment to any meal. Whether you’re preparing a family dinner or hosting a special occasion, this Italian spinach recipe is sure to impress. Let’s dive into the delicious details and learn how to make this culinary delight at home.

What is Pete and Sam’s Italian Spinach?

Pete and Sam’s Italian Spinach is a renowned dish from Pete & Sam’s restaurant, a beloved Italian eatery known for its traditional recipes and hearty flavors. This spinach dish stands out for its simplicity and rich taste, featuring fresh spinach cooked with garlic, olive oil, and a blend of cheeses. The result is a creamy, savory side dish that pairs wonderfully with a variety of main courses.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

If you’re a fan of spinach, this recipe will quickly become a favorite. It’s packed with nutrients, easy to make, and versatile enough to serve with many dishes. Plus, it brings a touch of Italian flair to your table with its aromatic garlic and cheesy goodness. Whether you’re a novice cook or an experienced chef, you’ll appreciate the straightforward preparation and impressive flavor of Pete and Sam’s Italian Spinach.

Ingredients You’ll Need

To recreate this delicious spinach dish at home, gather the following ingredients:

  • 2 pounds fresh spinach, washed and trimmed
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated Romano cheese
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Step-by-Step Recipe

1. Prepare the Spinach

Start by washing and trimming the spinach to remove any tough stems. Fresh spinach works best for this recipe, but if you’re using frozen spinach, make sure to thaw and drain it thoroughly to remove excess moisture.

2. Sauté the Garlic

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and sauté until it becomes fragrant and lightly golden. Be careful not to burn the garlic, as it can become bitter.

3. Cook the Spinach

Add the fresh spinach to the skillet in batches, stirring frequently until it wilts down. This may take a few minutes, depending on the size of your skillet. Once all the spinach is wilted, season it with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes if you’re using them.

4. Add the Cheeses

Reduce the heat to low and stir in the ricotta cheese until it’s well combined with the spinach. Then, sprinkle in the grated Parmesan and Romano cheeses, stirring until the mixture is creamy and evenly distributed.

5. Serve and Enjoy

Transfer the creamy spinach mixture to a serving dish and garnish with a little extra grated Parmesan if desired. Serve hot as a side dish to complement your main course.

Tips for Perfect Italian Spinach

Use Fresh Ingredients

The key to a great Italian spinach dish is using fresh, high-quality ingredients. Fresh spinach and good-quality cheeses make a big difference in flavor and texture.

Control the Moisture

Spinach can release a lot of water as it cooks. To avoid a watery dish, make sure to drain any excess moisture from the spinach before adding the cheeses. If using frozen spinach, press it to remove as much water as possible.

Adjust Seasonings

Feel free to adjust the seasonings to your taste. Add more garlic for a bolder flavor or increase the red pepper flakes for a bit of heat. You can also experiment with different cheeses to create your own unique version of this dish.

Variations to Try

Spinach and Artichoke

For a twist on the classic recipe, add chopped artichoke hearts to the spinach mixture. This variation adds a tangy, briny flavor that pairs beautifully with the creamy cheese.

Spinach and Mushrooms

Sauté some sliced mushrooms along with the garlic for an earthy, savory addition. Mushrooms complement the spinach and cheese, making the dish even more hearty and flavorful.

Cheesy Spinach Casserole

Turn this side dish into a main course by baking it in a casserole dish. Top with additional cheese and breadcrumbs, then bake until bubbly and golden brown. Serve with a side salad and crusty bread for a complete meal.

Serving Suggestions

Pete and Sam’s Italian Spinach is a versatile side dish that pairs well with many main courses. Here are a few ideas to inspire your meal planning:

With Grilled Meats

The rich, garlicky flavor of Italian spinach complements grilled meats beautifully. Serve it alongside grilled chicken, steak, or pork chops for a balanced and delicious meal.

As a Pasta Side

This spinach dish makes a fantastic accompaniment to pasta. Serve it with spaghetti, fettuccine, or any of your favorite pasta dishes. The creamy spinach and cheese blend beautifully with tomato or Alfredo sauces.

With Seafood

Italian spinach pairs wonderfully with seafood. Try serving it alongside grilled or baked fish, shrimp scampi, or even a seafood pasta dish.

On its Own

This dish is so flavorful and satisfying that it can be enjoyed on its own as a light meal. Pair it with a slice of crusty bread and a glass of white wine for a simple, elegant dinner.


Pete and Sam’s Italian Spinach is a classic dish that brings the flavors of Italy to your kitchen with ease. It’s a perfect side dish for any occasion, offering a delightful combination of fresh spinach, garlic, and creamy cheeses. Whether you’re serving it with grilled meats, pasta, or seafood, this recipe is sure to impress your family and friends. Give it a try and enjoy the rich, savory taste of this beloved dish.

For more ideas, recipes, and cooking tips and tricks, please visit us at My Tasty Soul.

FAQs About Pete and Sam’s Italian Spinach Recipe

Can I use frozen spinach for this recipe?

Yes, you can use frozen spinach if fresh is not available. Just make sure to thaw and drain it thoroughly to remove excess moisture before cooking.

What other cheeses can I use in this recipe?

Feel free to experiment with different cheeses. Mozzarella, fontina, or even gouda can be used to create a unique flavor profile. Just ensure the cheeses melt well and complement the spinach.

How do I store leftovers?

Store any leftover Italian spinach in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat gently on the stovetop or in the microwave before serving.

Can I make this dish ahead of time?

Yes, you can prepare the spinach mixture ahead of time and refrigerate it. When ready to serve, reheat it on the stovetop, stirring until heated through and creamy.

Is this dish suitable for vegetarians?

Absolutely! Pete and Sam’s Italian Spinach is a vegetarian-friendly dish that’s rich in flavor and nutrients, making it a great option for vegetarian meals.