Recipe: Quinoa stuffed mushrooms (gluten free, vegan)

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I love stuffed mushrooms. Actually, I love mushrooms in general, but the stuffing and baking method of preparation is one I particularly enjoy eating. They just feel especially decadent to me, with the mushroom flavor melding into the filling as the mushrooms bake. Recently, I decided to give my favorite stuffed mushroom recipe a bit of a makeover, using quinoa as the base of the stuffing, in lieu of the more common breadcrumbs. I mixed the quinoa with a deconstructed pesto, then stuffed my mushrooms with as much filling as they could possibly hold. The result was a mouthful of savory deliciousness. I kept these mushrooms vegan, but a spoonful or two of grated parmesan would also go nicely in this recipe. If you have leftovers, chop them up and mix with chickpeas and wilted greens for an easy lunch bowl.

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Quinoa stuffed mushrooms
Makes 16 mushrooms

Ingredients

16 large brown mushrooms (about 12 oz)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cups cooked quinoa (cook in vegetable broth for extra flavor)
1/3 cup fresh basil, finely chopped
3 tablespoons walnuts, finely chopped
salt and pepper, to taste

Method

1. Remove stems from mushrooms, chop the stems into fine pieces. Begin oven preheating to 400F.

2. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in an 8-10″ skillet. Cook mushroom stems and garlic over medium heat for 5-7 minutes, until most of the liquid released from the mushroom stems has evaporated. Add basil and cook until basil has begun to wilt, approximately 1 more minute. Remove from heat.

3. In a mixing bowl, combine quinoa, remaining tablespoon of oil, walnuts, and the cooked mushroom stem mixture. Stir to combine, add salt and pepper to taste.

4. Stuff each mushroom generously with the quinoa mixture and arrange stuffed mushrooms on a baking tray. Place in oven and bake for 10-12 minutes, until quinoa has begun to slightly brown on top. Remove from oven and allow to cool for at least 5 minutes before serving.

Nutrition information (per mushroom): 46 calories, 2.9 g fat, 3.9 g carbohydrate, 1.6 g protein, 0.7 g fiber

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