Remember how I eat gluten free? And remember how if I didn’t have to, I wouldn’t? Yeah, this ol’ body doesn’t do well with that gluten stuff……but I really wish it’d change its mind. Because I miss a few things! ;) But I make do with a variety of creative ingredients. (All my recipes here are either gluten free, or adapted to be GF.)
So, when I come upon recipes from friends or online that are gluten free (or easily adaptable), I get really excited. Like Christmas morning excited!
A month or so ago, I came upon a recipe for Cheesey Quinoa Bites, that had gluten in them. So I changed a few things, altered the ingredient portions just a bit……..and now these could easily be one of my favorite meals lately.
And I say meals because Quinoa is a complete super protein and is very filling on its own. Yeah, sometimes we’ll make a salad or some steamed broccoli for the side…..but these little babies are awesome all alone! The original recipe suggests honey mustard to dip them into……which is my favorite. But ranch is also tasty! Or eat them sans dip.
Oh wait, you have never heard of Quinoa? Well, it’s a seed (but acts like a grain) and is similar in size to cous-cous……but different in flavor. It takes on other flavors really well and can be eaten as a side, mixed in with salads, or treated as the main meal because of its high protein content. It’s a really fun way for Gluten Free-ers (yeah, awesome grammar, I know) to have another grain choice…..because wheat is off limits. But, of course is just as fantastic for you who eat gluten too. And really, really healthy. (Here’s a simple go-to recipe I use often, when eating quinoa as a side.)
For these little Parmesan Quinoa Bites, just combine some quinoa, parmesan cheese, grated carrot, onions, herbs and some other goodness……..bake it into little bites, and you have a thin crispy/cheesey crust, with a moist savory center. Yum, yum, and more yum.
Now, come on. Who can resist a simple and savory Quinoa Bite, packed with so much goodness?
Ready to bake your own Parmesan Quinoa Bites?
Full recipe written out below.
First, gather your ingredients:
Then, grate your carrots, slice your green onions, and chop your parsley.
Add all ingredients into large mixing bowl.
Fill muffin tin pans (that are completely covered in cooking spray) 3/4 full with mixture. Press into tin with the back of a spoon.
Add a bit more parmesan cheese on top.
Bake at 350 (fahrenheit) for 20-30 minutes. Then enjoy.
So delicious dipped in Honey Dijon Dressing, Ranch……or your favorite dip.
And also delicious re-heated the next day for lunch.
(I’ve never frozen them and re-heated them because they never last that long. But I’m sure they’d do fine!)
Parmesan Quinoa Bites
(adapted from this recipe)
- 2 1/2 cups of cooked quinoa (instead of preparing quinoa with water like the package suggests, use chicken broth. so much tastier!)
- 3 large eggs
- 3 stalks of green onion, sliced thin
- 1 cup grated carrots
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/3 cup fresh parsley, chopped
- 3/4 cup parmesan cheese, plus extra to sprinkle on top
- 3 Tbsp rice flour (or regular flour if you’re not GF)
- 1/4 tsp salt (more if you use water to make your quinoa. otherwise, the chicken broth adds enough salt.)
- 1/4 tsp pepper
Preheat oven to 350 (fahrenheit).
Combine all of your ingredients in a large bowl (except for the extra parmesan for the top of each bite) and mix well. Spray your muffin tins entirely with cooking spray (don’t skimp on the spray or your bites will stick). Scoop out enough mixture to fill your standard muffin tins 3/4 full. Press down firmly with your fingers or the back of a spoon. Sprinkle more parmesan cheese on top of each muffin tin portion. Bake in over for 20-30 minutes. Ready when slightly browned on top and a fairly browned crust on bottom and sides has formed. (The charm of these bites is the nice and crispy, almost chewy, crust around all the edges. The cheese melts and bakes into the sides….and oh my, it’s heavenly. So don’t remove too early…..but you don’t want them burnt and dried out either. So watch them carefully!)
Pop out of muffin tins and allow to cool slightly. Dip bites into your favorite dressing and enjoy!