Caprese salad quinoa stuffed portabellas



Happy 2013! This year’s gonna be a good one – filled with a wedding(!) and house hunting. That’s right, folks, we’ve set a June deadline for moving into a place with a larger kitchen. Don’t worry, with the rental prices in Berkeley,  the kitchen will likely still be pint-sized, but the goal is that it’ll be larger than 26 square feet (Update: We’ve found a place!). Back to the wedding talk. In addition to the hundreds of crepe paper flowers I’m going to make over the next 6 months, I’m also strictly back on my healthy eating regimen. The pre-wedding get fit fast meal plan. I may have gorged on cupcake after cupcake over the holidays, but the new year put an abrupt end to that. Starting with these super food quinoa stuffed portabella mushrooms.

We spent Sunday at the drawing board planning our week’s healthy menu and accompanying shopping list. Lower complex carbs, less fat and sugar, and more vegetables and grains. And for some reason all I wanted was pasta mixed with white rice on top of bread baked into a flakey, buttery pie crust. I love sugar and carbs. But goshdarnit, I WILL have self-control. I will not bake cookies every night. I will not bake cookies every night. This is my mantra. Notice that I said, “every night” because, in full disclosure, I will still be baking every once in a while and sometimes I deserve a cookie, ok? But mostly I’ll give it all away to my friends. Now there’s a plan, when I cave, I’ll just send boxes of cookies and cupcakes to my bridesmaids – to fatten them up so ;) Muahaha. Who knows – I do love me some sweets, so anything’s possible. Stay tuned to see how I turned Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia ice cream flavors into a healthy meal!


While scouring the internet and flipping through my thousands of cookbooks for recipes, I had a second goal in mind. On Christmas, my cousin asked me for some gluten-free vegan recipes. As I’ve mentioned, my brother has been basically vegan for several years now, but it became quite apparent while searching through my repertoire of recipes that vegan and gluten-free is a section of the food Venn diagram I haven’t spent much time cooking in. And with that, this recipe for stuffed portabella mushrooms topped our weekly menu. This one’s for you, Aaron!


The thing I love most about meal planning and grocery shopping at the beginning of the week is that when Tuesday at 5pm rolls around, and figuring out a dinner plan sounds torturous because I’m inevitably exhausted with a headache, all I’ve got to do is pull out the ingredients and whip up a quick dish. It’s awesome not having to pick a recipe, make a list, go to the store for ingredients, and come back home to cook it in a single night. At that point, I’d rather just order take-out, which we discovered happened way too often while I was studying in November. These stuffed portabella mushrooms are so frickin’ fantastic, though, that I’d gladly go to the store on a week night to pick up the ingredients. As a great alternative to meat, portabella mushrooms make this recipe hearty, substantial, and an excellent source of protein. The tiny melty pockets of fresh mozzarella add depth that ensures excitement with each bite without leaving you feeling guilty. Week 1 of healthy eating complete!

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  1. Veronica says:

    Wow! The photos are beautiful! It looks scrumptious!

  2. Sowmya says:

    Amazing photos.. So colourful!!

  3. Ruta says:

    Looks delicious! Definitely making me hungry and I just ate breakfast! I love all the color in the dish.

  4. Chris says:

    Oh wow that’s the biggest mushroom I’ve ever seen! Looks like a great recipe and one to try.

  5. Sher says:

    I can’t wait to make this dish!!

  6. What gorgeous, inspiring photos! Even without a wedding on the horizon, they make me want to eat and cook healthy too. I find the energy of a new year really helpful on that front.

    This recipe would also make a lovely contribution to the Shine Supper Club. I hope you’ll join us!

  7. Love your version of this! It’s making me hungry for it all over again! :)

  8. Erin says:

    Thanks so much for a fabulous idea! Made a version of this for one and it was delicious. Very filling!

  9. Snix, these look SO good.

  10. Shelley says:

    I love it when I have all the ingredients on hand when a recipe jumps out and smacks me, metaphorically, side the head and demands to be created ASAP! I made this for dinner this evening and it was simply fantastic! The only alt I made was organic sea salt flakes asfixiation ding kosher salt in Scotland is next to I possible. I stock up when I go home to New England every spring, but lots of cooking this year meant I ran out already, but I seriously doubt that this would have altered the flavor drastically. Hubs, a true carnivore, was shocked that he didn’t miss the meat in this meal. The pine nuts added just the right amount of crunch and texture to the great flavor combo. I’ll be adding this to my regular weeknight dinner recipes.

    • Thank you so much for sharing that you made and loved this recipe! I bet the organic sea salt flakes actually tasted even better! I’m glad to hear your meat-eatin’ husband loved it too. Thank you for your super thoughtful comment:)

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