Caprese Style Quinoa Bake

This was soooooo yummy.  Hubby and I like to eat meatless so this was actually great by itself for a meal, but it makes an awesome side dish as well for those who want a more rounded-out dinner.  The boys liked it, too, though they aren’t crazy about chunks of tomato.  A regular caprese uses fresh, delicious mozzarella, so by all means use it if you’ve got it.  However, I didn’t have any so I used goat cheese instead.  It was awesome!  This dish came out tasting like warm, comforting, creamy tomato soup with some chew.  Delicious.

caprese quinoa

Caprese Style Quinoa Bake

3 cups cooked quinoa

1 cup pasta sauce

2 T tomato paste

1/3 cup heavy cream

1/3 cup Parmesan cheese

1 cup Mozzarella (or 4 oz. goat cheese)

2/3 cup grape tomatoes, halved*

1/4 cup fresh basil, cut into ribbons

salt & pepper

1. Preheat oven to 350*. Cook the quinoa- 1 cup quinoa + 2 cups chicken broth.

2. In a saucepan heat up the pasta sauce and tomato paste. Once warm, stir in the cream, parmesan, salt & pepper, half the tomatoes, half the basil, and half the mozzarella or goat cheese. Stir until heated through and everything is melted and smooth. *I didn’t have grape tomatoes so I diced up a large one.

3. Spray a baking dish (I used a 4×7 but you can go up to an 8×8 or 9×9). Pour in quinoa mixture and top with remaining tomato and mozz/goat cheese.

4. Bake for 15 minutes, then broil for an additional 2 or 3, until cheese is gold and bubbly.

5. Remove from oven and top with the remaining basil ribbons.  Allow to sit for a few minutes before serving.

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Parmesan & Chive Quinoa Patties

Wow, these were good! Everyone enjoyed them and I definitely will be making them again. They were the perfect side to my Honey Lime Chicken Kabobs, and just as satisfying as my Rice Fritters but with less mess (always a good thing around here). You should yield about a dozen 2-inch cakes, however size and number will vary.


Parmesan & Chive Quinoa Patties

2 1/2 cups cooked quinoa

4 large eggs, beaten

1/2 tsp sea salt

6 green onions, sliced thin*

1/3 cup fresh shredded parmesan

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup panko bread crumbs



1. Combine the quinoa, eggs, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir in the chives, onions, cheese, and garlic. *When cutting up the green onions, use the entire thing. Add the panko, stir, and let sit a few minutes. If the mixture is too wet add more panko, if too dry add water.

2. Heat 1 T oil at a time in large skillet over medium high heat. Form your patties into approx. 2 ounce/1-inch circles and place into the pan. Fry until bottoms are considerably browned then flip over and cook the tops. Drain on paper towels.

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Quinoa, Black Bean & Corn Burritos

I am stoked to share this recipe with you today. After a very loooong week of hardly any cooking and no posting, I am back in the saddle and kicking May off with this awesome vegetarian (and potentially gluten free) tex-mex  meal! These burritos can easily be made with a GF tortilla or even better in corn tortillas and eaten taco style. Enjoy!


Quinoa, Black Bean & Corn Burritos

1 cup cooked quinoa (1/2 cup quinoa to 1 cup water)


1 medium onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup chicken or vegetable broth

1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes with green chilis, undrained*

1 1/2 tsp chili powder

1 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

salt & pepper to taste

1 cup frozen corn

2 (15 oz) cans black beans, drained and rinsed

juice of 1 lime

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

flour or corn tortillas

If desired: avocado or guacamole, diced tomatoes, chopped lettuce, shredded cheese, taco or hot sauce


1. Heat EVOO in large skillet over medium-high heat and saute the onions, about 3 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook one more minute.

2. Pour in broth and tomatoes. *I used tomatoes that didn’t have chilis in them so I added a can of diced green chilis (4 oz can) but only used 2 oz. It’s up to you how much heat you like. Add in spices (chili powder, cumin, paprika, cayenne, salt & pepper) and cooked quinoa; stir well to combine.

3. Bring to a boil then lower heat to simmer for about 20 minutes or until mixture thickens.

4. Stir in black beans, corn, lime juice and cilantro, and allow to simmer an additional 5-10 minutes, uncovered.

5. Serve on tortillas with desired toppings. If making burritos I suggest heating up a small pan with some cooking spray and setting the folded burritos in the pan for just a few minutes on each side. This will help keep your tortillas together and it gives it a nice added flavor and texture.




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May Menu ~ 2013

You may have noticed that I took a little sabbatical from blogging. I didn’t know I was going to take a break but it was obvious that I needed one. It’s also pretty obvious that I didn’t cook nearly as much of my April menu as I intended and I usually try to make those recipes up the next month, but alas, I probably won’t get to those any time soon. But I do have a whole menu of new and exciting recipes to share, and I appreciate all you wonderful readers and fellow bloggers for coming back to see what I’m cooking 🙂


Recipes I’m cooking that I’ve shared before:

Zucchini Noodles,  Cilantro Lime Rice,  Spinach Tomato Feta Frittata,  Cheeseburger Salad,  Black Bean & Steak Taquitos

Recipes I’m working on this month:

Quinoa, Black Bean & Corn Burritos

Fish Cakes with Cilantro-Lime Dip

Mushroom & Peas Pulao

Chicken Enchilada Pasta Bake

Skinny Cheeseburger Casserole

Southwest Chicken & Corn Chowder

Crock Pot Honey Sesame Chicken

White Bean Turkey Chili

Marinated London Broil

Cajun Chicken Fritters with Cajun Aioli

Bourbon BBQ Sliders with Garlic Aioli

Southwest Chicken Wraps

Honey-Lime Chicken Kabobs

Shredded Beef Tacos with Lime Cabbage & Queso

Chopped Thai Chicken Salad

Chipotle Steak Burritos

Crispy GF Sweet & Sour Chicken

Chili’s Chicken Enchilada Soup

 Sides & Other:

Thai Dragon Noodles

Turkey Bacon & Cheddar Potato Cakes

Four Bean Salad

Parmesan & Chive Quinoa Patties

Deviled Potato Salad

Breakfast Enchilada Bake


Gooey Butter Bars with Fresh Strawberries

Mini Apple Tarte Tatin

Strawberry Tart with Basil Cream

Vanilla-Coconut Rice Pudding

Chocolate Banana Pudding Pie

Lemon Cake with Raspberries and Yogurt Frosting



tempt tuesday


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Gluten Free February Menu ~ 2013


It’s here! I hope you’re ready for some awesome GF recipes because I have been researching and collecting for weeks. As I mentioned before, I am going to take this week by week so that I don’t get overwhelemed. What that means is I will prepare a GF meal every evening for family dinner and I am personally going to attempt to eat as GF as possible every day, and while I will try to feed my family GF as much as possible I realize that we’re just not there yet, so I am not going to fixate over that. First thing’s first. I have about three weeks worth of meal ideas plus a few extras 🙂 but by the middle of the month I should have a better grasp of what I’m doing and some more recipes to share.

In addition to my semi-regular menu plan of Meatless Mondays, Mexican Wednesdays, and Friday Pizza Nights, I am adding Crock Pot Sundays. Thursdays are still fish recipes, and that just leaves Tuesdays and Saturdays for everything else. I hope you enjoy this menu plan, and as always I will come back and add links once the recipe has been posted.

Cheeseburger Salad

Lentil and Pasta Soup (substitute GF pasta)

 Black Bean Soup

BBQ Salmon

Garlic Tilapia

TexMex Polenta Pizza

Brown Rice Macaroni and Cheese

Stew Beef with Brown Rice

Turkey Ragu with Polenta

Baked Tacos with Crock Pot Pinto Beans

Tuna Steaks with Lima Bean Butter

Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken

Black Bean Risotto

Roasted Potato Frittata

Mexican Stew with Ground Turkey

Brown Rice Pasta with Ground Turkey Bolognese

Mini Polenta Pizzas

Quinoa-Crusted Chicken

~*~ EXTRAS ~*~

Bacon & Egg Puffs

Breakfast Burrito

Blueberry Muffins

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Sweet Potato Cornbread

Sweet Corn Risotto