Choose spinach that has vibrant deep green leaves no signs of yellowing in the stems. The leaves should look (and be) fresh and tender, not wilted or bruised. Avoid any that have a slimy coating as this is an indication of decay.
Spinach, bunched or prepackaged, needs to be washed very well before eating. The leaves and stems collect a lot of sand and soil. Before washing, trim off the roots and separate the leaves. Place the spinach in a large bowl of tepid water and swish the leaves around with your hands as this will allow any dirt to become dislodged. Remove the leaves from the water, empty your bowl, refill with clean water and repeat this process until no dirt remains in the water (usually two to three times will do the trick). If you're going to use it in a salad or want its "crunch" on a sandwich, use a salad spinner to dry the spinach. If you're going to be cooking it, you needn't dry it.
- Toss spinach, romaine lettuce and red peppers into your next salad for a nutritional boost.
- Enjoy spinach steamed or stir-fried, or make a fresh, crunchy spinach salad.
- Pine nuts are a great addition to cooked spinach.
- Toss steamed spinach with pressed garlic, fresh lemon juice and olive oil. Sprinkle with a little Parmesan cheese.
- Add layers of steamed spinach to your next lasagna recipe.
Notable Nutrients in 1/2-cup Boiled Spinach
- Calories: 21
- Vitamin A: 89,433 IU (189% DV)
- Folate: 132 micrograms (33% DV)*
- Vitamin C: 9 milligrams (15% DV)
- Vitamin K: 444 micrograms (555% DV)
- Copper: 0.31 milligrams (16% DV)*
- Iron: 3.2 milligrams (18% DV)*
- Magnesium: 79 milligrams (20% DV)*
- Potassium: 429 milligrams (12% DV)
- Fiber: 4.3 grams (17% DV)
- Beta Carotene: 5,659 micrograms