Memorial Day Buffalo Quinoa Bites (GF)

Buffalo Quinoa Bites.jpg
This coming Monday we honor our fallen troops and gather with friends and family for Memorial Day. And what Memorial Day celebration would be complete without a delicious meal and shared dishes? Barbecues are so much fun with the sunshine, games and abundance of food. But let’s face it – the typical barbecue food can be pretty unhealthy, especially when you start adding in those chips and sides. If you have food allergies or intolerances it can be even harder.

Here’s a fun recipe for a party platter classic – but with a healthy and gluten-free twist. Buffalo Quinoa Bites! They’re stuffed with cheese so you still get that bit of delicious decadence, but they’re baked not fried and safe for vegetarians too! Quinoa is really good at absorbing sauces and flavors, so if you’re a buffalo sauce fan, you might just enjoy these more than traditional wings! Serve them with a side of parmesan crisps for some extra cheesiness!

Recipe via The Iron YouIngredients 
Makes about 30-32 quinoa bites

Quinoa bites
2 cups / 11 oz / 300 gr cooked quinoa (you’ll need to cook about 1 cup of quinoa)
4 free-range organic eggs, lightly beaten
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup / 3.5 oz / 100 gr breadcrumbs (I used Gillian’s gluten-free breadcrumbs)
30 ½-inch cubes mozzarella

Sauce
½ stick / 4 oz / 113 gr butter
½ cup hot sauce (I used Frank’s Red Hot)

Directions

Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
Combine quinoa, eggs, tomato paste, salt, garlic powder, paprika, and black pepper into a bowl.
Add breadcrumbs and stir in well. Let mixture sit for a couple of minutes so that the breadcrumbs can absorb the moisture.
Scoop 1 heaping tablespoon of quinoa mixture and with dampened hands make quinoa balls – placing one cube of mozzarella into the middle of the ball and forming a smooth ball around the mozzarella. Repeat to form all quinoa bites.
Place quinoa bites onto the lined baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.
In the meantime make the sauce. Combine the hot sauce and butter in a small saucepan on medium heat (or place in a microwave safe bowl for 2 minutes on high).
After 15 minutes, remove baking sheet from the oven, gently turn quinoa bites (they should have browned a little) and top with buffalo sauce.
Put back in the oven and bake for another 8 minutes.
Serve hot (with celery sticks and blue cheese dip if you want to be authentic).

Nutrition facts
One quinoa bite “dressed” yields 90 calories, 4 grams of fat, 10 grams of carbs and 4 grams of protein.

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