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Italian Spinach Braid

Total Time

Prep: 20 min. + rising Bake: 20 min.


6 servings

“I've been making this recipe for over 25 years. It's how I got my kids to eat spinach when they were little. This is the dish I'm asked to make the most.” Pat Jasper — Northlake, Illinois
Italian Spinach Braid Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 1 loaf (1 pound) frozen whole wheat bread dough, thawed
  • 1 pound lean ground beef (90% lean)
  • 1 package (10 ounces) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
  • 2/3 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 2 tablespoons grated Romano cheese
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried minced garlic
  • 3/4 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg white, beaten
  • Pizza sauce, optional


  1. Roll dough into a 12x9-in. rectangle. Transfer to a 15x10x1-in. baking pan coated with cooking spray. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook beef over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Transfer to a large bowl; add the spinach, cheeses, garlic, fennel seed, oregano and salt.
  3. Spread beef mixture lengthwise down the center of dough. On each long side, cut 1-in.-wide strips 3 in. into center.
  4. Starting at one end, fold alternating strips at an angle across filling. Pinch ends to seal. Brush with egg white. Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with pizza sauce if desired.

Nutrition Facts

1 piece: 366 calories, 12g fat (4g saturated fat), 57mg cholesterol, 709mg sodium, 38g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 6g fiber), 30g protein.

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