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Creamed Spinach and Wild Rice Casserole. A mix between your classic green bean casserole, a spinach soufflé, and a bowl of French onion soup. It’s not your traditional side, but it’s so delicious. Caramelized yellow onions with baby spinach (or use kale) in a cream sauce with fresh thyme and sage. Wild rice is then mixed in and the casserole is topped with Gruyère cheese. When baked together the creamed spinach and nutty wild rice create the perfect balance. The cheese just makes the casserole even yummier. Make this casserole ahead of time for an easy holiday side that everyone will love.

Creamed Spinach and Wild Rice Casserole |

Thanksgiving is less than a week away. Not sure how we got to this point of the year already, but the holidays are here. The stores are filled with Christmas decorations, gifts, and toys. Turkeys, yams, and hams are everywhere. There’s a lot of rush-rush, stress, and excitement.

I love every minute of this season. Even with some of the stress, it’s fun having so much happening. So many things to share, cook, bake, eat, and hopefully enjoy. The holidays are magical in my eyes!

I’ve been enjoying sharing Thanksgiving dishes all week long. This is the last side dish I’m sharing before the Thanksgiving holiday and it’s such a yummy one! Next week I’ll focus on easy dinners and quick appetizers to share with our guests and family. Everyone will be arriving soon!

Creamed Spinach and Wild Rice Casserole |

When it comes to Thanksgiving dishes, I grew up with the basics. Roasted turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, sweet potatoes and rolls. My brothers and I never bothered with the green beans or any of that other “adult” food.

When we moved to Colorado I started cooking a lot of the Thanksgiving meal. I became a little more adventurous. I was baking popovers and roasting spaghetti squash. But truthfully, the green bean casserole has never been of interest to me.

So instead, one year I made a version of this wild rice casserole. Ever since that year, I’ve made it every Thanksgiving! It was inspired by the classic green bean casserole, but in reality, it’s pretty different

It’s loaded up with creamed spinach (or kale), wild rice, and plenty of melty cheese on top. It’s kind of a mix between a spinach soufflé and yummy French onion soup!

Creamed Spinach and Wild Rice Casserole |

Here are the details

Step 1: caramelize the onions and cook the greens

Use sweet yellow onions and begin cooking them down until they are soft. Then add all of the spinach, or try using kale. Allow the greens to slowly cook along with the onions until they are wilted.

At this point, the onions should be pretty caramelized. Add a couple of tablespoons of butter, garlic, fresh thyme, sage, and poultry seasoning.

Step 2: add the cream

Next mix in the cream cheese, cream, and milk. Simmer the cream sauce until it thickens just a bit.

Then remove the creamed spinach from the heat.

Step 3: mix in the wild rice

Spread the cooked wild rice out and into a casserole dish. Pour the creamed spinach over the rice, gently mixing to combine. You can cook the wild rice at home or use precooked wild rice. Many stores like Trader Joe’s sell cooked, frozen wild rice. That works perfectly too!

Next, add the cheese. I love to use melty, sweet, and sharp Gruyère cheese. It’s a great cheese to pair with the onions and rice.

Creamed Spinach and Wild Rice Casserole |

Step 4: bake

Bake the casserole until the cheese is melty and the edges begin to crisp.

It might seem simple, but that browned, golden top really adds another layer of deliciousness to the rice that makes everyone want more.

Serve this up warm with some fresh thyme for added color.

I’m excited to share this recipe with not only you but family and friends as well. This is one of my mom’s favorite sides.

The next question is, what will you be pairing this casserole with? The obvious answer for Thanksgiving is turkey. But come December, over here it will be the pot roast I can’t stop making it.

Creamed Spinach and Wild Rice Casserole |

Looking for other easy Thanksgiving sides?? Here are my favorites: 

Make Ahead Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Crispy Parmesan Thyme Sweet Potato Stacks

Crispy Cheesy Potato Stacks

Sweet Potato Casserole with Sweet ‘n’ Savory Bacon Pecans

Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes with Caramelized Onions

Lastly, if you make this Creamed Spinach and Wild Rice Casserole, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

Creamed Spinach and Wild Rice Casserole

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings: 6
Calories Per Serving: 612 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.



  • 1. Preheat the oven to 425° F.
    2. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the olive oil and onions until the onions are soft, 5 minutes. Add the spinach and or kale (I like to use a mix), and mushrooms, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally until the spinach is wilted, another 10 minutes. Add the butter, garlic, thyme, sage, poultry seasoning, and cayenne.
    3. Reduce the heat to low. Mix in the cream cheese, stirring until melted. Add the cream and milk. Simmer for 5 minutes, until the sauce thickens a bit, then remove from the heat. Season with salt and pepper.
    4. Spread the wild rice out into a 9x13-inch casserole dish. Pour the spinach and cream sauce over the rice, gently mixing to combine. Top the casserole with Gruyère cheese. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbling on top. Serve with sea salt on top!
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Creamed Spinach and Wild Rice Casserole |

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  1. 5 stars
    I added some black lentils to this for a heartier vegetarian option on my Thanksgiving buffet and it was a big hit. So good! Will definitely make this again.

    1. Hey Melissa,
      Happy Saturday!! Thanks a bunch for making this recipe and your comment! So glad to hear it was enjoyed:)

  2. Yummy casserole, and good alternative to old fashioned green bean casserole. I added a couple of handfuls of fresh green beans to the sautéing onions for fun . Also just used the whole 8 oz block of cream cheese. Liked by everyone!

  3. 5 stars
    I’m with SM on this one. The first version was fabulous and I too got a request for a repeat for Thanksgiving. The onions were cooked to crisp and put on top. It was also assembled in layers. Try making the bechamel, then layering half the rice, sauce, cheese, then onions and repeat ending with onions. To get the crispy bit right, Guild the Lilly a bit with crispy onions (yes, out of a can, shoot me) bake and enjoy. Not perfect but close. In any case, everyone enjoy Thanksgiving. And thank you Tiegan for the wonderful recipes!

    1. Hey Gail,
      Thanks for making this recipe and your comment, so glad it was enjoyed! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! xx

  4. 5 stars
    Hello! I made a different version of this you had posted a couple of weeks ago. One of the big differences were the onions were cooked separately and put on top with the cheese. It was so delicious at my Friendsgiving and I’d like to make that version again as it is being requested! I don’t think there was cream cheese in it either.

    1. Hi there,
      So sorry, I no longer have access to that version, this is the updated recipe. Please let me know if I can help in any other way! xT

  5. 5 stars
    I made this tonight for my husband and I and had to let you know how much we loved it! It was Delicious. We loved the cayenne pepper zing, yum! And so easy. The only thing I changed was to chop the mushrooms vs slice. This recipe is definitely being added to my thanksgiving fare. Thanks Tieghan!

    1. Hey Sandy,
      Wonderful!! So glad to hear that this recipe turned out well for you, thanks for making it! Happy Thanksgiving! xT

  6. 4 stars
    I was very excited to see this recipe, as I always have wild rice, cooked & vacuumed sealed in my freezer. I will cook in the instant pot a full bag of wild rice to save time. I had all the other ingredients in the house, which is another reason for excitement! I love your site & your recipes are alway right on for flavor & texture, I serve many of your recipes to guest without trying them out first, your recipes are so reliable! I make at least 2 of your recipes a week.
    I didn’t make any changes to your recipe, used fresh spinach instead of kale. This recipe makes the best creamed spinach ever! Before I assembled the mushroom spinach mixture with the wild rice, asked my husband & son to taste it first, It was so delicious, had to kick them out of kitchen to prevent them from eating all of it. Since they had eaten so much of the mushroom mixture I decided to only use 2 cups of the wild rice instead of 4 cups. It looked so delicious when I set the casserole on the table. We could hardly wait to dig in, after the first couple of bites, we all said we don’t like the combination of textures with the wild rice, plus the flavor of the creamed spinach & mushrooms were too diluted.
    This is a must save recipe for our family but will be deleting the addition of the wild rice. Thank you for a delicious creamed spinach & mushroom recipe!

    1. Hi Charlotte,
      I appreciate you making so many recipes and your kind message! So sorry to hear you didn’t enjoy this recipe once it was all combined! Glad the creamed spinach and mushrooms were a keeper though:) Thanks for your feedback! xT

  7. Hi, since wild rice is all black, can I assume you used a long grain/wild rice mix here? From what I’m seeing in the picture, it’s not purely wild rice.
    Thank you!

    1. Hi Kate,
      I used Lundberg Wild Rice blend which is not all black:) Please use whatever wild rice you enjoy best! I hope you love this recipe! xx

    2. Wild rice can be anywhere between light brown and black. There is no one shade for rice. My god, people. Stop with this insane t.r.o.l.i.n.g.

      1. But wild rice vs. wild rice blend actually makes a difference to the cook time. A wild rice blend has pre-cooked wild rice alongside other types of rice. Pure wild rice is not pre-cooked and will take much longer to cook.

        1. I agree with you, but you are using already cooked rice for this recipe, so it’s really not going to make a difference:)

  8. Could I use a lower-fat milk, such as half-and-half or whole milk instead of the heavy cream? If so, should any measurements be adjusted?

    Can’t wait to try this!!

    1. Hi Julie,
      I have only tested this recipe with the heavy cream, I would suggest using that for best results:) Please let me know if you have any other questions! xT

    2. 5 stars
      There is always a learning curve when I make a new recipe. I am not an expert on the kitchen, but I like to try. I know I will try this one again. It will go great with turkey and I had it with grilled bone in pork chops. (Hubby)
      New for me – making wild rice and cooking with Gruyère cheese. Next time I will add the mushrooms to the sauce.
      Thank you Tieghan for expanding my experience with cooking. It wasn’t hard- just a few pieces to the puzzle.
      I appreciated the flavor profile and for me I will back off the sage a tad. Coming from Texas, I liked the touch of cayenne to add a little kick. I would like to think people who cook any recipe tweak them a bit.
      Thanks again Tieghan- I did post some pics on my Instagram story. Happy Thanksgiving 🦃

      1. Hey Julie,
        Wonderful!! So glad to hear that this recipe turned out well for you, thanks for making it! Happy Thanksgiving! xT

    1. Hi Laura,
      You could skip the sage and use another herb that you enjoy like rosemary:) I hope this recipe turns out well for you! xT

    1. Hi Sissy,
      Absolutely, that will work well for you! Please let me know if you give this dish a try, I hope you love it! xx