Spinach Grilled Cheese is a veggie-packed variation on the classic sandwich that’s just so delicious. (This favorite kids sandwich is equally appealing to adults too!) It’s also easy to make and packed with iron…which is a nice bonus.

spinach grilled cheese on plate with apple slices

Spinach Grilled Cheese

I’ve been making Spinach Quesadillas for years and found that a version of the filling makes a really delicious grilled cheese sandwich. It’s easy to mix up, spreads on easily, and is a nice way to vary a favorite sandwich.

I love this as much for myself as for the kids and while they sure do love a plain grilled cheese, this is a fun option to have in the mix. (We just call it “green grilled cheese” in our house!)

You can use regular or baby spinach in this healthy grilled cheese recipe, and really any type of bread you prefer, so use what you have access to.

In addition to my Spinach Muffins, Spinach Smoothie, and Spinach Eggs, these sandwiches are one of our favorite ways to serve greens to kids.

Ingredients You Need

To make this recipe, you’ll need:

ingredients in spinach grilled cheese on counter
  • Bread: Any type of sandwich bread will work fine. I usually use a whole grain or sourdough.
  • Spinach: Bagged baby spinach is easy, though any larger leaf variety will work too.
  • Shredded cheese: I like cheddar.
  • Cream cheese: You can omit this if you don’t have it, but it adds serious creaminess.
  • Cumin: Optional for extra flavor.
  • Salt: Optional for extra flavor.

TIP: I like the flavor that cumin adds, but you can skip it if you prefer.

Ingredient Substitutions

  • You can use thawed frozen spinach. Squeeze it as dry as you can and use 1/2-1 cup lightly packed. (It’s fairly concentrated when it’s thawed from frozen.) This option may taste more overtly like spinach.
  • Gluten-free: Swap in a gluten-free bread.
  • Dairy-free: Use a dairy-free cheese you like that melts well.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Here’s a look at how to make this recipe. Scroll down to the bottom of this post for the full specifics.

how to make spinach grilled cheese step by step
  1. Add the filling ingredients to a food processor. Process to blend. You may need to stop and start once or twice to get it well mixed.
  2. Spread filling onto bread. I try to do a fairly thin layer.
  3. Add bread to a warm, buttered skillet.
  4. Top with the other slice of bread and cook until warm and melty.

TIP: I like to melt the butter in the pan, then swirl the bread around to coat it. You can also spread the butter right onto the bread if you prefer.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use frozen spinach?

Yes, you’ll just want to thaw it first and squeeze as much liquid out as you can. I would use about ¼ cup. Add it right to the food processor as you would if starting from fresh.

What age is this good for?

You can serve this to older babies eating finger foods if you dice it up into small pieces. Then, you can cut it into sticks for kids about 16/18 months and up or cut it into regular sandwich halves.

What kind of bread do you prefer?

It’s really up to you and we’ve made this with sourdough, seedy whole grain bread, softer types of whole grain bread, and white bread.

Can a grilled cheese be healthy?

It depends what your definition of “healthy” is, but it can be a delicious and nutritious option in this mix. This version also boasts iron, which is a nice element too.

slices of spinach grilled cheese on white plate

How to Store

You can store any leftover spinach mixture in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Then you can make more sandwiches.

You can also reheat leftover cooked sandwiches briefly in the microwave (the bread will be soft, not crispy), or in a 375 degree F oven on a baking sheet for about 6 minutes.

kids-blue-plate-with-sandwich,-corn,-applesauce

Best Tips for Success

  • I like to melt the butter in the pan, then swirl the bread around to coat it. You can also spread the butter right onto the bread if you prefer.
  • To make this with frozen spinach: Thaw it first and squeeze as much liquid out as possible. Use about ¼ cup and add it to the food processor in Step 1. (Or you can freeze spinach yourself and use the amount in the recipe.)
  • Use baby spinach or regular size spinach leaves with the stems discarded.
  • Let cool for a minute or two before slicing.
  • Use less filling on the bread if you prefer.
  • I like to melt the butter in the pan, then swirl the bread around to coat it. You can also spread the butter right onto the bread if you prefer.
  • Dice it for older babies and younger toddlers, cut into strips, or cut in half or quarters like a regular sandwich.

Related Recipes


I’d love to hear your feedback on this recipe if you try it so please comment and rate it below!

spinach-grilled-cheese-on-plate

Easy Spinach Grilled Cheese

You can also do this with full size spinach if that's what you're able to find. Just discard any stems before starting the recipe.
5 from 15 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Cuisine Mexican
Course Dinner
Calories 359kcal
Servings 2 -4

Ingredients

  • 2 cups baby spinach (loosely packed when measuring)
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 tablespoons cream cheese
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 1/8 teaspoon cumin
  • 4 slices whole grain bread
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Instructions

  • Place the spinach, cheese, cream cheese, salt, and cumin into a food processor. Blend until smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  • Divide the spinach mixture between 2 slices of bread and spread evenly. (You can use less of the mixture if you prefer.)
  • Warm a skillet over medium heat. When warm, add butter to the skillet to melt.
  • Add the bread slices with filling and swirl to coat with butter. Top with the remaining slices of bread and cook for 4 minutes. Flip over, swirl to coat bread with remaining melted butter In the pan and cook for an additional 4 minutes or until golden brown and filling is melty.
  • Cut in half, into strips or dice up with kitchen scissors and serve warm.

Notes

  • You can store any leftover spinach mixture in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  • Use baby spinach or regular size spinach leaves with the stems discarded.
  • Let cool for a minute or two before slicing.
  • Use less filling on the bread if you prefer.
  • I like to melt the butter in the pan, then swirl the bread around to coat it. You can also spread the butter right onto the bread if you prefer.

Nutrition

Calories: 359kcal, Carbohydrates: 25g, Protein: 16g, Fat: 22g, Saturated Fat: 13g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 6g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 61mg, Sodium: 616mg, Potassium: 358mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 3469IU, Vitamin C: 8mg, Calcium: 310mg, Iron: 3mg
Tried this recipe?Rate in the comments and tag @yummytoddlerfood on IG!

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    We made this for our 2.5 yo today and he gobbled it up! So tasty. Thank you so, so much! What a relief to know he had some veggies today 🙂

  2. 5 stars
    These were such a hit for St Patricks day dinner for my little guy thanks so much for another delish and easy recipe!

  3. 5 stars
    I love this! I have made this as is, but most recently started using as quesadilla filling. My kiddo is going through a no veggies phase and this has been perfect!

  4. 5 stars
    Subbed all the dairy ingredients for dairy free ingredients (including dairy free cream cheese) and still turned out delicious! My son gobbled it right up!

  5. Weird question, but is it possible to freeze these? My kid won’t eat the same thing in the same week most of the time 😩

  6. 5 stars
    Only had chives and onion cream cheese on hand and it was delish! Also added some rotisserie chicken. Kid gobbled it up and I ate one myself! Thanks!

  7. Sounds delicious! Can’t wait to try! Any tips if I want to pack for preschool lunch? They have a microwave but don’t think she’ll eat it soft

    1. Hmmm, you could try it in a thermos? I think the steam would likely make it a little soft. (I say that as someone who has happily eaten this reheated in the microwave so I guess you could also try it at home first and see what she thinks?)