I love being in the kitchen. I love cooking. And with this new stomach of mine, I’m having to be creative to make foods that are tasty, and packed with protein. I also have the added challenge of making things I can eat on the go (a big no-no, but a reality of my life, job and place of residence. I mean, really. If you had to be at a meeting at 6:30am, and it took you 45 minutes to get there, and you had to eat breakfast, slowly, over a 30 minute period, are you going to wake up 30 extra minutes early, or are you going to eat breakfast slowly during your 45 minute drive to that early meeting? Exactly.)
I found the original great recipe at The World According to Eggface, but modified it to include some extra tastiness. I’ve made it twice now, and loved it both times. Ultimately you can make this recipe your own. Use pork instead of chicken. Use more cheese and make it vegetarian. Use broccoli instead of spinach. Or kale!
If you modify it, leave me a comment and let me know how it turns out. I’ll be making these every week for the next months and years. I’m certain.
Quinoa Chicken Spinach Tasties – makes 12 cupcake sized quiche like things
8 ounces cooked chicken, shredded (I used leftovers from a roast crock-potted chicken)
1 cup cooked multi-color quinoa
4 ounces shredded cheddar cheese (or any delicious cheese you’d like. Make sure it melts good!)
half a bag of frozen spinach (8 ounces-ish), thawed and cooked a bit
1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
2. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. If the chicken or spinach is warm, let it cool a bit, so you don’t cook/scramble the eggs before their time. I call this the “raw goop” stage.
3. Get a cupcake pan, or a mini-cupcake pan. Make a choice: use cupcake liners or not.
3a. No liners- Oil the crap out of the cupcake pan. I use an olive oil spray (homemade). I hear coconut oil works well too. Don’t do this too early. Grease the cups *right before* you fill them with the raw goop.
3b. Liners- Place the cupcake liners in the cupcake pan. I used metal ones, but then had to remove them when I went to microwave the individual bites. I chose not to use them the second time. If someone uses paper liners, let me know how those work for you.
4. Divide the raw goop into the cupcake pan. I started with about a 1/4 cup into each cup. Whatever was left I used to top off the cups that looked a little low. Made 12 perfectly!
5. Place the raw tasties in the oven. Bake for 20-30 minutes. Since ovens vary, and have hot and cold spots, start checking at 20 minutes. They are done when they look like this:
6. Let the tasties cool for at least an hour. (I left them for 4 hours, but I had to run to a meeting!). Run a nice sharp thin knife around the edges of the tasties. Or, if you’re lucky and you greased well, flip the pan over and watch the tasties fall out.
7. Make a choice: store or eat right away!
7a. To store, place in a tupperware or a freezer bag and store in the fridge or freezer. I keep them in the fridge for about 2 weeks. (I only eat one a day. So 12 days). If you’re going to freeze them, why not freeze them in individual snack size bags, to make it easier to defrost and reheat?
7b. Eat them all right away! I imagine these would make a delicious addition to a brunch spread, or appetizers at a party. Or, for regular eating folks, 2 of them and a green salad would make a great lunch or dinner.
I’m purposely not including nutritional information for this recipe, because it can differ so much depending on your ingredients. If you want a great app that can help you figure out the nutritional values for your favorite homemade recipes, and track your food, try My Fitness Pal. It’s free. And if you’re not a smartphone user, the website is amazing.