This delicious party appetizer is wildly addictive and gloriously gluten-free too! Betcha can’t eat just one!
Every time I post a recipe with meat in it people go nuts. The general response is usually “Whaaaaaaat I thought you were vegetarian!?” or “Jenny don’t take a bite of that there’s meat in it!“
I guess I don’t talk about it much, huh? Though I haven’t been one since starting P&C, I was a mondo vegetarian/pescatarian for around 6 years.
I loved it! It challenged me to embrace new foods [Beans and I became BFF finally!] and step outside of my comfort zone in order to nurture my body. Though I was happy at the time, my body’s needs changed and thus, so did my dietary lineup. Initially I only had a few servings of local grass-fed, pasture-raised meat a month, but it’s since increased to a few times a week, along with the occasional addition of poultry and pork. Pregnancy, nursing, and all that jazz played their role. I’ve even gotten as lax as to order an occasional burger at a restaurant and feed into my life-long BLT infatuation.
While I’ve always tried to keep things veggie-centric on the blog, I will occasionally throw a t-rex friendly recipe your way when the craving strikes.
Well the craving struck. Hard. This one is for all my gluten-free carnivores that will humor me and let me stuff their food into vegetables. They’re flavorful finger food, perfect for a party or a holiday appetizer! You can also give them sidekick billing as a tasty Thanksgiving dinner side. Their veggie-status makes them super versatile like that!
5 minPrep Time
30 minCook Time
35 minTotal Time
- about 25 standard-large whole button mushrooms [24oz]
- 1/2 cup dry quinoa, rinsed
- 3/4 cup broth or water
- 3 hot Italian chicken sausage links [the larger sized ones]
- 1/2 cup minced onion
- 2 large cloves of garlic, smashed and minced
- 5 button mushrooms, diced
- 2 TBSP garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 tsp paprika
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Feel free to use regular button mushrooms or baby bella portobellos! I've made it with both and they're delicious! I've also tested the recipe using both organic chicken sausage and pork sausage and it was divine both ways. Choose your favorite!
- No quinoa handy? These are also marvelous with Italian style or Panko breadcrumbs! Yum!
- Pre-heat oven or toaster oven to 350 degrees F.
- Clean mushrooms, remove stems, and arrange on an oiled baking sheet.
- Set aside.
- Bring a small pot with 3/4 cup of broth or water to boil.
- Add quinoa and cook, partially covered for 12-13 minutes until fluffy.
- Set aside.
- While the quinoa cooks, bring a skillet to medium-high heat.
- Remove casings from sausage and add to your skillet.
- Cook sausage, stirring often to create small crumbles, and once it's no longer pink in the center, set aside. The goal is to leave the sausage a bit juicy since it still has some oven time ahead of it.
- Keep burner on and, using the same skillet, add your onion and a little bit of water [or broth... or wine!] to deglaze the pan and saute.
- When onions start to soften, add in garlic and chopped mushroom and reduce heat to medium.
- Stirring occasionally, cook until onions are tender and translucent.
- Add your quinoa to the sausage mixture mix thoroughly.
- Season with sea salt, garlic powder, and paprika. I like these garlicky [and wouldn't have them any other way!] so feel free to give the mixture a taste before adding the garlic powder. If you love it as is, have at it. If you're a garlic lover, add the 2 TBSP in full. Let your taste buds be your guide!
- Remove from heat and allow to cool just a tad before handling.
- Refrain from scarfing too many spoonfuls of the stuffing in your mouth while you spoon the mixture into the mushroom caps.
- Bake for approx 15-20 minutes or until mushrooms are tender and steamy after giving up a bit of their liquid.
- Dig in! Well, once the mushrooms are a little less molten hot than they will be straight out of the oven. Burning the roof of your mouth is the worst!
Feel free to prep the stuffing in advance to save time during the holidays! It'll keep in the fridge for up to 4 days. To save space I typically keep the stuffing in one container and the prepped mushrooms in another, then combine and bake when I'm ready for an impressive appetizer! They can also be pre-stuffed and popped in the fridge. With either option, take the ingredients out a little in advance to bring to room temperature before baking or simply add a few extra minutes to the total baking time if they're coming straight out of the fridge. Easy peasy!
so… how were they!? Delicious! These garlicky bite-sized quinoa bombs were a huge hit! Paul’s parent’s devoured them alongside me and even the chickpea got involved. I initially just gave her the filling but soon she was slinging stuffed mushrooms with the rest of us! Love it!
So what are you waiting for?!
Skip the breadcrumbs and grab some quinoa!