The Best Canned Spinach, Ranked

What should you look for in the best canned spinach brand? It might depend on your culinary needs, but in general, the best canned spinach has a fresh leafy texture that doesn’t turn to mush when you heat it up. The flavor should carry a light sweetness and balanced saltiness that complements your recipes while still tasting yummy on its own. Canned spinach is a great substitute for fresh or frozen spinach—and in some cases, it’s preferable. You just can’t say that about a lot of canned vegetables (cough *canned peas* cough).

Okay, honesty hour: I had never bought canned spinach prior to this taste test. Instead, I’ve always played a fun game with myself called “how to waste my grocery money” by only buying fresh spinach from the produce department, letting it rot in my fridge, and consequently giving up on my original meal prep plans to spend a fortune on food delivery instead! This game is also called “just another zillennial struggling with money management, impulse control, and general life skills,” but I digress. The topic at hand is the best canned spinach brand, not my ongoing existential crisis. Though I do think, in some ways, they are one and the same. 

As of right now, I’ve come away from this ranking knowing that my twenties could have been so much easier if I just bought more canned vegetables—and that includes spinach! I hope I can convince you of the same. I drained and warmed all of these in a pan with a teeny bit of olive oil before chomping down like Popeye the Sailor (who has his very own spinach in a can, if you can believe it). If I’ve inspired you to buy a can of spinach the next time you go to the grocery store, make sure it’s one of these.

Best Lower Sodium Canned Spinach

Best Lower Sodium

Del Monte Leaf Spinach (No Salt Added)

Any brand of canned spinach without salt added is going to taste a little bland straight out of the can. But for recipes that call for plain spinach, Del Monte knows how to deliver a springy, leafy texture and harmonious taste that easily surpasses other brands of lower-sodium canned spinach. Out of all the brands on this list, I’d say this is the best canned spinach to throw into a green smoothie, too. (Unless you prefer salty smoothies. That’s your choice, and as a salt queen myself, I won’t judge you for it.)

Credit: Merc / Instacart




Best Seasoned Canned Spinach

Best Seasoned

Glory Foods Seasoned Southern Style Spinach

As someone who considers herself relatively sane (emphasis on “relatively”), I wasn’t expecting to enjoy eating spinach straight out of the can. I thought this ranking would be tolerable at best  and mildly traumatic at worst. But after tasting Glory Foods Seasoned Southern Style Spinach, I realized I was totally wrong about canned spinach! Seriously, I prefer this stuff to my own freshly cooked spinach. It’s so wonderfully salty, and it comes pre-seasoned with onion powder, garlic, brown sugar, and hickory smoke flavor, which work together to make the leafy green taste savory and umami. I was grateful to just have this around—I kept coming back for more to cleanse my palette of the less inviting brands of canned spinach on my plate. The texture will remind you more of collard greens, and since it’s so salty and flavorful, I can’t recommend it for every culinary use. But if you just want a side of spinach that you can throw some butter on and call a day? Heck yeah. Consider this the best canned spinach brand for you. 

Credit: Merc / Instacart




Best Spinach Flavor Canned Spinach

Best Spinach Flavor

Popeye Leaf Spinach

I’m happy to say that Popeye Leaf Spinach is one of the best canned spinach brands out there and would make its namesake proud. After tasting it, I wrote in my notes, “Oh wow, that’s spinach.” Helpful, I know, but what I meant to say was that out of all the brands here, Popeye’s reminds me the most of freshly cooked spinach from the produce section. It has the mildly sweet and pleasantly bitter aftertaste of spinach leaves picked straight from the garden. The leafy texture pulls apart nicely—thankfully, it’s a far cry from wet seaweed, which I can’t say for a few brands that didn’t make this list. For a spinach-artichoke dip, Popeye will bring out a robust spinach flavor that won’t get lost in the sauce. I almost gave this the number one spot, except, well… 

Credit: Merc / Instacart




Best of the Best Canned Spinach

Best of the Best

Del Monte Leaf Spinach

I hate to be that person, but in the end, deciding the best of the best canned spinach brand came down to ingredients. I mean, we are talking about a nutrient-rich vegetable here, so there should be some merit to looking at the labels. And as much as I appreciated the robust spinach flavor of the Popeye spinach can, Del Monte Leaf Spinach is simply impossible to fault. It has a lovely, balanced sweetness and tender leafy texture that would complement any recipe. Despite tasting a little saltier than Popeye, Del Monte contains lower sodium overall while boasting slightly higher levels of potassium and protein. It’s really the full package, so stock up! 

Credit: Merc / Instacart




About the Author

Ariana Losch

Ariana Losch is a Sporked contributor, webcomic writer, java junkie, and bad TV enthusiast. She only ever feels at peace laying out on a beach like a kebab, roasting in the sun; sadly, she can never move back to Florida, her home state, because there simply isn’t enough good Mediterranean food. You can find her overstaying her welcome at just about every LA coffee shop, working on a screenplay and avoiding all eye contact. (She is embarrassed to be there, please leave her alone.)

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