Ahhh; quinoa. How I love thee.
I love your soft, fluffy texture.
I love cooking up a batch on Sunday night and picking on your leftovers with my little fingers before tossing it into salads, soups and desserts for the week ahead.
(p.s. I’ve got a TON of amazing Quinoa recipes in my NEW Cookbook Eating Clean: The 21-Day Plan to Detox, Fight Inflammation, and Reset Your Body).
I love how every time I cook you up, you remind me of a cozy family dinner when I was a kid. After being on lockdown at the dinner table with Brussels sprouts and a crock pot meal – quinoa never looked so good or tasted so good, for that matter.
Sigh. I love you quinoa. And so do my clients- they can’t get enough lately.
Actually they’ve been eating so much of it that they asked me for some other ways to prepare it.
Well, have no fear Amie is here.
And wait until you see how cute these little bites are that I’ve created.
If you, too love this darling qunioa seed then I know you’ll love this recipe with tiny flecks of basil, onion and chives. It’s the perfect touch that makes this recipe the best I’ve had in a long, long time.
There’s just something special about it that I can’t put my finger on….
Maybe because it’s a fun lil’ finger food that you’ll love to dip right into a fresh tomato sauce.
Or maybe it’s just because I love quinoa.
One bite of these and you’ll be batting your eyelashes while smiling ear to ear. And you’ll probably wanna make ’em again next week…because they’re a bit too good to be true.
I added dairy-free cheese to this recipe but you can use regular cheese if you prefer. The amount of cherry tomatoes depends on their ripeness. Right now, if your tomatoes are as ruby red n’ juicy and sweet as mine- you probably only need about 7-8 of those little guys. But you’ll have to be the judge!
I used regular muffin tins to make this recipe an entree but you are welcome to use mini muffin tins if you’d like to create bite sized appetizers as they’d be awfully cute for a summer BBQ, wouldn’t they?
There’s nothing better, folks, than the smell of savory quinoa bites baking in the oven. Well, I take that back. The only better thing is actually eating these bites.
Perfect for Memorial Day Cookouts.
Just don’t forget your sunglasses and sunscreen.
- 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
- 1/2 cup uncooked black rice
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup Vidalia onions finely chopped
- 1 cup dairy-free vegan shredded mozzarella cheese
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves finely chopped
- 1/3 cup grape tomatoes diced
- 1/2 tsp. sea salt
- 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
- 1 tsp. chili powder
- 2 chives finely chopped, for garnish
- 2 cups homemade tomato sauce for serving
Sun Dried-Tomato Sauce
- 2 yellow bell peppers diced and seeded
- 1 cup chicken or vegetable broth plus more if needed for a thinner sauce
- 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes
- 1 large heirloom tomato diced
- 1 shallot diced
- 1 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh basil
- 1 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh parsley
- 1 Medjool date pitted and finely diced
- 1 large garlic clove
- 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- Large pinch chili powder
- pinch cayenne pepper
- pinch ground paprika
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
For the Quinoa Bites:
Cook quinoa and rice according to package directions. Prepare muffin pan with nonstick baking spray.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a large bowl, combine cooked quinoa and rice with remaining ingredients, except chives and pasta sauce; mix well to combine.
Transfer quinoa and rice mixture to prepared muffin pan. Using a tablespoon, fill each muffin cup to the top, then using a spatula, press down on the mixture to create a flat surface.
Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Meanwhile, make the tomato sauce (below). Remove from oven; set aside to cool for 15 minutes. Using a teaspoon, gently remove rice and quinoa snacks from the muffin cups.
Transfer to a serving platter; serve with a sprinkle of fresh chives and a side of tomato sauce for dipping.
For the Sun-Dried Tomato Sauce:
In a large pot over medium heat, combine all sauce ingredients and cook until all veggies are very tender, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a food processor and puree until smooth. Return to the pot, heat until warm throughout and serve with the warm quinoa bites.