Spinach and Rice Casserole with Feta and Toasted Walnuts


4 1/2 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1 c chicken stock
1/4 yellow onion (in one piece)
1 1/2 c whole milk
5/8 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
1 1/2 (12 oz) bags of frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1/2 c cooked white rice
3/8 c grated parmesan cheese
1/4 c cooked wild rice
1/4 c crumbled feta cheese
1/4 c toasted walnut pieces
1/4 c chopped green onions

Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease a 9- by 13-inch casserole dish with 1/2 of butter.
In a medium saucepan combine the chicken stock and the onion and bring the stock to a boil. Continue to cook until stock is reduced to ½ cup, about 10 minutes.
Add the milk, salt, black pepper and cayenne to the saucepan and bring the milk just to a simmer. Remove from the heat and remove the onion (onion may be discarded).
In a small microwavable bowl, melt the remaining 4 Tbsp butter and then whisk in the flour until smooth. Whisk the butter-flour mixture into the hot milk and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk the egg and egg yolk until thoroughly combined. Add the spinach, white rice, ½ cup of the Parmesan, wild rice, feta cheese, walnuts and green onions and stir to blend. Spoon the spinach mixture into the buttered casserole dish and then pour the hot milk mixture evenly over the top of the spinach.
Using the back of a spoon, spread the sauce so that it evenly covers the spinach mixture.
Sprinkle the remaining ¼ cup of Parmesan over the top and bake in the center of the oven until the casserole is set and lightly golden on top, 30 to 35 minutes. Serve hot or warm.

Calories: 220
15g Fat (7g Saturated fat, 75mg Cholesterol.) 446mg Sodium. 14g Carbohydrates (3g Fiber, 4g Total sugar.) 9g Protein.

Lower Fat: Use a low-fat butter spread such as Smart Balance Light, and reduce to 2 1/2 Tbsp. Use skim milk and fat-free feta. Substitute 3oz liquid egg whites for whole egg & yolk. 140 Calories. 5g Fat (1g Saturated fat, 7mg Cholesterol.) 482mg Sodium. 15g Carbohydrates (3g Fiber, 4g Total sugar.) 10g Protein.
Lower Carbohydrate: Use unsweetened almond milk. Substitute ½ tsp xanthan gum for flour. Use cauliflower rice. 175 Calories. 14g Fat (6g Saturated fat, 75mg Cholesterol.) 430mg Sodium. 8g Carbohydrates (3g Fiber, 3g Total sugar.) 7g Protein.
Lower Sodium: Use salt substitute and salt-free chicken bouillon such as Herbox to reduce sodium to 221mg.
Dairy-free: Use vegan butter, milk, cheese. 190 Calories. 14g Fat (1g Saturated fat, 0mg Cholesterol.) 369mg Sodium. 10g Carbohydrates (3g Fiber, 4g Total sugar.) 7g Protein.
Gluten-free: Recipe is gluten-free as is.

August 12, 2022

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