Recipe: Baked Potatoes with Cheesy Spinach & Mushroom Sauce
Loaded baked potatoes just scream comfort food. The bad part about them, though, is that they’re usually loaded with stuff that’s not so good for you, like fatty bacon, sour cream and a billion pats of butter. Enter in this slightly lighter vegetarian version! I promise it’s not remotely short on flavor.
I kept the cheese (I mean, come on) from the traditional loaded baked potato, but I chose a sharp white cheddar so I could use less of it while still packing a punch of flavor. The pièce de résistance here is the spinach mushroom sauce; while you might usually find a sauce like this made with heavy cream, I opted for evaporated milk instead. Did you know that heavy cream has more than twice the calories and five times the fat content of evaporated milk? It’s an easy swap, and in my opinion evaporated milk is just as creamy and rich as heavy cream. Top the finished product with a bit of salt and pepper and prepare to drool over this baked potato upgrade.
2 T. butter
4 oz. cremini or butter mushrooms, cleaned & chopped
1 shallot, minced
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 c. white wine
2 handfuls of baby spinach, torn into pieces
3 T. evaporated milk
1/2 T. Parmesan or other white cheese
2-3 oz. grated sharp white cheddar cheese
Salt & pepper, to taste
1) Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Clean the potatoes and pierce them 3-4 times with a fork. Line a baking sheet with foil, place the potatoes onto the sheet and bake them for an hour.
2) When the potatoes have about 20 minutes left, start on the spinach mushroom sauce. Heat one tablespoon of the butter in a large pan over medium-high heat. When the butter begins to bubble, add the mushrooms and cook, stirring frequently, until they brown and begin to soften.
3) Reduce the heat to medium and add the shallot, garlic and second tablespoon of butter. Cook until the shallots and garlic become soft. Pour in the wine to deglaze the pan and stir well, cooking 1-2 more minutes.
4) When the potatoes are ready, cut them down the middle and push both ends inward so the sides of the potato puff out and the middle is revealed. Sprinkle with a bit of cheddar cheese and bake until the cheese is golden and starts to brown, about five minutes.
5) Add the spinach to the mushroom pan and cook, stirring well, until the spinach wilts.
6) Stir in the evaporated milk and Parmesan and season with salt and pepper. Scoop the sauce onto each potato and top with additional cheese, if desired.
Original recipe by Peas & Crayons