Is there anyone who doesn’t love a good appetizer? Whether it’s at an event, or served before the entrée at a seated dinner, there is something so satisfying about the perfect dish to graze on. This spinach pull apart bread is the perfect appetizer for pasta night, a cozy companion to a warm bowl of soup, or an awesome app for baby or bridal showers. You can have the whole thing ready in 30 minutes!
This recipe looks fancy, and your guests will certainly think that you outdid yourself, but between you and me, it is super easy. It can also pair well with main entrees as a side dish. Plus, it comes with a short, simple shopping list. You will likely already have butter and garlic on hand, in which case, you will only need to grab bread, cheese, and spinach. That also makes this a super affordable way to serve a classy, beautiful appetizer.
Why You'll Love This Cheese Pull Apart Bread
- Quick and Easy – This recipe only requires a few simple ingredients, and can be prepared in 30 minutes. There are no complicated steps or gadgets required. It looks and feels fancy, but it is so simple! You don't need a bundt pan or even need to knead a dough ball for this golden brown cheesy goodness!
- Fan Favorite – Who doesn’t love bread and cheese? This recipe is a guaranteed hit, whether you’re serving it for family dinner, a sports party, or entertaining guests for a classy seated gathering. It looks beautiful and tastes even better.
Ingredients For Spinach Pull Apart Bread
- Round Loaf Bread – You will need one round loaf of bread, approximately 16-20 ounces in size. The best types of bread for this recipe are either Italian or sourdough.
- Butter – Delicious, creamy butter helps to make this bread flavorful, crispy, and creamy inside. I like to use real butter, but the choice is yours.
• Garlic – Of course this recipe would not be complete without freshly chopped garlic for flavor.
- Mozzarella Cheese – There is a little room for wiggle here. If you prefer extra cheesy bread, you can always add more. I like to purchase fresh mozzarella and cut about an inch of it into thin slices, plus chop a little extra for garnish at the end.
- Spinach - This recipe calls for one cup of my favorite heart-healthy leafy green. You will want to wash it and then chop it finely. Keep in mind that the spinach needs to fit in the crevices of the bread after you cut it, so you will want them to be small enough to go in easily. Also, smaller pieces of spinach will come out more easily with serving. If you wish to add any other veggies with your spinach, I would recommend keeping them chopped small as well. Heavy toppings will have a harder time sticking to the bread and cheese.
How to make Spinach Pull Apart Bread
1. Preheat oven 375 F. Melt butter and add garlic in a bowl. I have used the microwave in a pinch but prefer stove top.
2. Cut the bread vertically, then horizontally, making sure NOT to cut all the way through.
3. Add your chopped spinach neatly into your cuts. Add cheese in each open area. Brush the bread with your garlic butter.
4. On a baking sheet, add foil and place prepared loaf on top. Then cover the prepared loaf with another piece of foil, folding edges sealed. Bake 10 minutes Uncover and bake another 10 minutes
Step by Step Instructions
First, preheat your oven to 375. While the oven is warming up, you will want to melt your butter. You can simply place the butter in a bowl and microwave it, or you can melt it on the stovetop. Take care not to overheat or brown your butter. We are just looking to melt it for brushing later on, not cook it. Mix your garlic into the butter.
Next, it is time to slice your bread. Keep in mind that you do not want to cut all the way through the bread. You want it to retain its round shape. You are essentially perforating the bread so that the fillings can get inside, and so that chunks are ready to pull off once it is done. Slice it horizontally and then vertically.
Fill the crevices of your bread with the chopped spinach, distributing evenly.
Next, it's time to stuff the cheese. Tuck your sliced cheese into the bread. Ideally, every part of the bread that has been cut would have cheese in the cracks.
Prepare a baking sheet with a piece of foil, and place your bread atop it. Brush the top of your bread loaf with the garlic butter you prepared in step one.
Next, cover the bread with an additional piece of foil. Bring the edges of each piece of foil together, so that they form a seal around your loaf of bread. Finally, bake your loaf wrapped in foil for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, remove the top covering layer of foil, and return to the oven for an additional 10 minutes, until cheese is gooey and bread is slightly browned.
Garnish with more cheese if desired. Serve warm.
- This dish is delicious all on its own, but for an added layer of flavor, try serving it with warm marinara sauce for dipping. You can even serve this with a side of spinach artichoke dip. Or if you like change the stuffing to spinach and artichoke so it will essentially be spinach artichoke pull apart bread!
- Opt for freshly baked bread. Bread that is a few days old will have already begun to dry out, and returning it to the oven will only make it tougher to chew. If you slice into your bread in step 2, and it is not soft, you can mist the bread lightly with water before you continue. It will soften in the oven.
- If you love this recipe and want to spice things up next time, try sprinkling with extras when you are done cooking. Some ideas include red pepper flakes, sea salt, parsley, everything seasoning, Cajun seasoning, or other types of cheese, like cheddar or ground parmesan.
Monkey bread was named for the way it is eaten – by pulling chunks off much like a monkey would. However, monkey bread is a bit different from a savory pull apart bread. Instead of baking chunks of dough together, this recipe utilizes a pre-baked loaf of bread, and fills it with cheese and spinach. I consider this a savory monkey bread!
Simply cut your bread in slices lengthwise, and then vertically. When making your slices, be sure to keep your knife from going all the way down. You don’t want to actually slice the bread, just create chunks you can fill and pull apart later.
If you wish to freeze your pull apart bread, slice and stuff the bread, but do not bake it. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and store in an airtight container and store for up to one month.
Looking for more easy finger food recipes? Try these:
Spinach Pull Apart Bread
- 1 16- to 20-ounce round loaf Italian or sourdough bread
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh garlic
- 1 inch sliced mozzarella cheese more the better for photos
- 1 cup of finely chopped spinach
- Preheat oven 375 F Melt butter and add garlic in a bowl, ive done microwave in a pinch but prefer stove top.
- Cut the bread vertically, then horizontally, MAKING SURE NOT TO CUT ALL THE WAY THROUGH.
- Add your chopped spinach nicely into your cuts
- Add cheese in each open area.
- On a baking sheet add a nicely cut piece of foil and place prepared loaf on top.. then cover the prepared loaf with another piece of foil, folding edges sealed.
- Bake 10 minutes
- Uncover and bake another 10 minutes