With festive gatherings quickly filling up our agendas, it’s about time that I share a recipe for a nourishing bite size party appetizer. Whether it’s a casual holiday potluck with close friends, or a more formal gathering where you’re looking to contribute to the buffet table, this versatile finger food is sure to be a welcome addition.
And if you’re hoping to cater to gluten or dairy sensitive guests, it’s your lucky day; while this recipe is gluten free as written, check out my note at the bottom of the page to make it suitable for the dairy aware. Yes, these tasty appies are fantastic as a quick party contribution, but if you’re staying close to home this season and are in need of some more convincing – this recipe offers a host of nutrition benefits to help meet your needs, mainly due to its key ingredients: mushrooms and quinoa.
In addition to being low in calories and high in fibre, phytonutrients & antioxidants, mushrooms are high in B vitamins (specifically, B2 & B3) and the minerals copper and selenium. Whether you choose to use crimini or standard white button mushrooms for this recipe is a matter of personal preference and availability. Both varieties are typically similar in size, but the brown crimini mushroom is generally firmer in texture and richer in flavour. In fact, crimini mushroom’s flavour is often referred to as ‘meaty’ (something to consider if you’ll be catering to a meat eating crowd).
Good old quinoa… if you’ve ever browsed the internet or skimmed through social media news feeds, I’m sure that you’ve heard all the rage about quinoa of late. While this food is extremely nutritious (offering a hefty dose of fibre, antioxidant power, as well as vitamins and minerals), it is not as fantastic of a protein source as the media makes it seem. Yes, unlike similar grain-like products, the protein in quinoa delivers a full set of amino acids, so it is considered a complete protein source (win). But in comparison to brown rice (for example) it contains just 3 grams more protein and 5 grams fewer carbohydrates per 1 cup serving. In the big scheme of things, quinoa is still largely a carbohydrate source, not a super high protein source, as it is painted to be (specifically, quinoa provides 40 grams of carbs and 8 grams of protein per 1 cup serving). But don’t pull away just yet! Quinoa is an extremely nourishing diet addition (especially when combined with veggies and fresh herbs, as it is in this recipe). I’m just cautioning you not to look to this food to meet your daily protein needs.
Highlights of making this recipe:
- Unlike many fancy appetizer recipes out there, this recipe won’t have you searching specialty grocery store shelves. Containing many ingredients you may already have in your kitchen (and the extra ingredients that you may need to purchase are typically easy to locate and inexpensive), this recipe is time and budget friendly.
- This stuffed mushroom recipe is super easy to modify to make it dairy free and vegan if required (remember to check out the notes section at the bottom of the page).
- This no-fuss party appy will be ready to pack out the door in just over 30 minutes (if you aren’t baking the assembled mushrooms before the event, as recommended – again, see my tip at bottom of the page).
Doubling as a quick-to-prepare, unique veggie addition to a seasonal feast, these stuffed mushroom appies are sure to impress picky eaters and health conscious guests alike!
Macros per 3 Mushrooms
Protein: 3.5 g
Fat: 3 g
Carbohydrates: 5.5 g
Sugar: 1 g
Fibre: 1 g
Herbed Stuffed Mushroom Appy
- 1/4 cup quinoa red and/or white
- 1/2 cup low sodium vegetable broth
- 30 large crimini or white button mushrooms ideally > 1 1/2-inch diameter
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil divided
- 3 tbsp yellow onion minced
- 2 tbsp egg whites
- 2 tbsp crushed walnuts
- 2 tbsp finely diced fresh parsley
- 1 tbsp finely diced fresh basil
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/8 tsp black pepper
- 1/8 tsp fine sea salt
- 1/4 cup grated light mozzarella cheese
- Preheat oven to 400 Degrees Fahrenheit.
- In a small sauce pan, bring vegetable broth and quinoa to a boil. Cover and reduce to simmer, cooking for 13-15 minutes. Fluff with fork before allowing quinoa to cool.
- While waiting for quinoa to cook, wash mushrooms well. Remove stems by gently pushing the stem to one side until you hear a quiet click (indicating the stem has detached); be careful to keep mushroom tops in-tact.
- Finely dice mushroom stems and set aside.
- In a medium frying pan, heat 2/3 of oil on medium. Sauté onions and mushroom stems (stirring often) until tender, 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
- While waiting for mixture to cool, prepare a medium baking sheet with tinfoil and left-over oil. Evenly space the mushroom caps on baking sheet.
- Stir egg whites, quinoa, walnuts, herbs and spices into cooled mushroom mixture.
- Using a small spoon, scoop ~1 tsp of filling into the mushroom caps. Sprinkle each cap with ~1/3 tsp of cheese.
- Bake until cheese is fully melted & begins to brown and mushrooms are tender, 12-14 minutes. Serve warm.