Foodie Friday: Baked Leftover Spaghetti with Spinach

First Friday of the month:  Mom-Cook / Pasta / Recipe

Leftovers. How do you serve leftovers to make it appetizing again?  Most of the time, I just re-heat and serve as it. There are days when I get crazy and in the mood to rework a boring leftover dish and use whatever ingredients I may have in the ref or pantry.  This happened last night. Let me present to you my leftover spaghetti, now baked and even more delicious!

Spaghetti is the easiest thing to do and it's a safe dish that I can prepare every week if I wanted to. Lahat kumakain ng spaghetti, so sure ako na ubos lagi. Kaya I always make a big batch that the kids can still eat the following day, saving me precious time away from the kitchen and thinking of what to serve them.

A few days ago, I had organic veggies delivered and I didn't really plan on what to cook with them yet. All I intended for it is to mix or cook a vegetable dish for the kids to try. Challenging, yes. Anyhow, the lasagna that my boy ordered from Cibo last Tuesday gave me an idea to bake the leftover spaghetti with some cheese topping. The kids love cheese. I love cheese! The boy and I are intolerant to dairy (cheese included), but he craves for cheese a lot, and I need to control our consumption. So, this baked dish was a treat for him and even requested me to save a serving for him to eat for today's lunch. Done.

Here's the easy recipe for you to try, and you will be pleased to know that all the dairy and gluten in this pasta dish was sort of "balanced out" but the fresh organic spinach, hehehehe! At least I tried. =)


Spaghetti - leftovers or freshly cooked (approx. good for 4)
200 grams spinach
1 brick cream cheese
1/2 cup all purpose cream
grated cheese or cheese strips/slices, for topping - cheddar, mozzarella, parmesan, or any combo of your choice
(I didn't have enough cheddar to grate so I used cheese sandwich slices and cut into strips)

*adjust the cream, cheese and spinach to the amount of spaghetti

To prepare:
Pre-heat oven to 200' celsius / 390' fahrenheit 
Boil water, add some salt, then blanche spinach leaves for 2 minutes.
In a bowl, soften the cream cheese and mix with cream, then season with salt and pepper
Drain spinach and squeeze out excess water
Chop spinach into bits and mix into the bowl of cheese and cream. Set aside

To bake:
Transfer spaghetti in a baking pan (about 9"x9")
Spread the cheese and spinach mixture evenly on top of the spaghetti
Top with cheese strips or grated cheese
Bake for 20 minutes, or until cheese topping turns golden brown and slightly toasted

Serves 4.  
This recipe can work tomato-based pasta, like baked mac, amatriciana, or puttanesca. The spinach and cheese mixture is also a perfect filling for ravioli, cannelloni, and sauce for gnocchi!

The kids cleaned their plates, and they didn't even know the "green thingy" was spinach. Anything with cheese, they will eat, hahaha!

Enjoy!!! =)

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