Saturday, January 7, 2012

RECIPE: Crustless Quiche Muffins

This recipe for crustless quiche muffins is one I've been working on for several months, ever since the girls and I fell in love with the ones from Paradise Cafe and Bakery. What we didn't fall in love with was the enormous calorie and fat count, because the quiche muffins from Paradise, while completely cheesy and delicious, are practically the nutritional equivalent of a 6-ounce prime rib. I thought it would be nice to have a quiche muffin for breakfast that was full of protein, low in calories and fat and reasonably portable for busy mornings; also one that didn't require me to skip lunch because I'd already consumed a jillion calories.

These muffins are a good size and they're nice and dense. Eat one with a banana or an orange or even a container of yogurt and you've got a nice, sustaining breakfast that will stick with you. Or, heck, these things are so light in terms of calories and fat, you could have one for a quick snack in the afternoon when you need a jolt of energy-revving protein to carry you through the remainder of the work day and on into that dinner prep-homework-bath-and-bed-time routine.

In spite of the long ingredient list, these muffins mix up in a big hurry: It's mostly just a matter of opening packages and dumping ingredients into a mixing bowl.


1 1/2 cups Egg Beaters refrigerated egg
2 whole eggs, beaten
1 cup skim milk
2 cups Bisquick Heart-Smart baking mix (or the regular kind, if you'd prefer)
1 7-oz package reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup reduced-fat grated parmesan cheese (or, again, the regular kind, your pref)
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 16-oz package frozen spinach
2 teaspoons salt, or to taste (you can always use less in the recipe and add more to each portion)
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Thaw spinach by emptying bag into a colander and running lukewarm water over it until soaked; allow to drain while you put everything else together. In a medium mixing bowl, combine all other ingredients and stir. Squeeze out the drained spinach in the colander, pressing it to remove as much water as possible (I always use the edge of a plastic measuring cup.) Add the spinach to the egg mixture, stirring to make sure all the spinach gets un-clumped.

Take two regular muffin pans and spray them thoroughly with non-stick spray. Then spray them again. And again. Why, you ask? Because I learned from painful experience that if you don't make those muffin cups as non-stick-able as possible, you will be prying your little crustless quiches out with a chisel, leaving half of them adhering firmly to your pan.

Fill the muffin cups all the way full - they will pouf up a bit into the traditional domed muffin shape - and you will get a yield of about 21 muffins. If you fill them slightly less full, your muffins will be appreciably smaller, but you can get a full two dozen out of your quiche mixture. Really, it's whatever you prefer.

Bake muffins for 35-40 minutes, until set and a toothpick inserted in a center muffin comes out clean. Allow muffins to cool completely before removing from pan. You may need to gently go around each one with a knife to loosen them. Store in the fridge (we put ours in gallon-sized plastic bags) and reheat by microwaving for about a minute per muffin. Delicious!

Nutritional Information:
21 muffins as prepared with lower calorie/fat ingredients
Total Calories: 136.7; Total Fat: 5.5g (Saturated: 1.3g; Polyunsatured: 0.3g; Monounsaturated: 0.6); Cholesterol: 36.1mg; Sodium: 623.6mg; Potassium: 145.5mg; Total Carbohydrates: 13.9g (Dietary Fiber: 0.5g; Sugars: 1.6g); Protein: 8.7g
Weight Watchers Points Plus: 3 per muffin


Kayte said...

And they look really pretty, too!

Alma said...

Thanks for sharing this! Just what I was looking for. I found it when I did a google image search for quiche muffins. I'll be trying this out tomorrow or the next day!