Cook rice according to package directions without adding salt and butter.
Sauté onion and garlic in olive oil until golden â€“ about 5 mins. Add spinach and milk; stir to blend thoroughly. Bring to a boil; add cream cheese, and stir until cheese melts. Remove from heat.
Add rice, Cheddar cheese, artichokes, salt, and black pepper to spinach mixture; stir well. Place over medium heat; cover and cook 7 to 10 minutes, stirring twice, until mixture thickens slightly. Serve immediately.