Welcome back to Sunday Scratchups, your weekly recipe from scratch around grocery sales and affordable ingredients. Yes, it’s actually Monday — did Daylight Savings throw you for a loop yesterday, too? But I’ll make it up to you with… blackberries! Check out these Bodacious Blackberry Bites in a Quinoa Crust Cup, AKA: Look what I made while I was messing around.
I’m kind of liking quinoa in all its nutty chewiness lately, and several months ago I saw a quiche recipe with a quinoa crust in some long-forgotten magazine. This got me thinking: What if you instead played off the nuttiness in quinoa and created a dessert crust by adding in a little sweetness? So, these blackberries were staring at me, the quinoa was staring at me, Daylight Savings was taunting me with its promise of spring… and these Bodacious Blackberry Bites were born.
For this recipe I used black quinoa, which ran me $2.80 for 12 oz at the Big Lots 20% off sale last week. It’s just so pretty, isn’t it? I think black quinoa is a little crunchier than white or red, but any kind should do. Rinse your quinoa if desired to make it a little less bitter, then cook it up like rice: One part quinoa to two parts water. I used my little rice cooker (love that you can just set it and forget it and it keeps the rice or quinoa warm for you), but you can also cook quinoa in a pot on the stove top.
Bodacious Blackberry Bites (in a Quinoa Crust Cup) — Gluten Free, Dairy Free
For the crust:
2 cups cooked black quinoa, cooled
1/4 cup pecans, crushed
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp honey
For the filling:
18 oz fresh blackberries
1.5 tsp lemon juice
2 tsp honey
pinch of sea salt
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 Tbsp cornstarch
Mix all crust ingredients in large bowl, then press some of the quinoa mixture into each cup of a mini muffin tin. Bake 10 minutes at 350 degrees. (Crust should be firmed up, but not completely browned.)
While baking your crusts, gently mix blackberries, lemon juice, sea salt, vanilla, honey, and cornstarch in a large bowl. Remove muffin tin from oven and increase temperature to 375 degrees. Top each par-baked crust with blackberry mixture (around 3-4 berries on each), then bake at 375 for another 25 minutes. Serve warm.
Your blackberries should be bright red, purple, and wrinkled up when done.
These shouldn’t stick, but you might want to use a spoon to get your Bodacious Blackberry Bites out of the pan without crushing the berries or breaking the crust.
So what’s the verdict?
Oddly mixed, actually! You have to like quinoa to like these, since the nutty chewiness comes through very strongly (although tempered by the cinnamon and honey). I thought they were great, and the chewy crust was a fantastic contrast with the sweet, juicy berries. Junior High Guy is not a huge blackberries fan, so also thought the crust was great but that we should choose a different berry as the filling next time. (But then, being a junior high boy, he ate several anyway…) MashupDad took one bite and complained that quinoa got stuck in his teeth, lol — and poor Mr. 8 wasn’t feeling well, so declined to participate in our unofficial family taste test.
All in all, I’ll take it — and will definitely be scratching these up again in all their gluten free, dairy free, superfood goodness. I’m already thinking about what else to make with some variation on the quinoa crust, since I have more cooked quinoa left over!
Easy print version
Bodacious Blackberry Bites (in a Quinoa Crust Cup) -- Gluten free, Dairy free
- For the crust:
- 2 cups cooked black quinoa cooled
- 1/4 cup pecans crushed
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp honey
- 1 egg
- For the filling:
- 18 oz fresh blackberries
- 1.5 tsp lemon juice
- 2 tsp honey
- pinch of sea salt
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1 Tbsp cornstarch
- Mix all crust ingredients in large bowl, then press some of the quinoa mixture into each cup of a mini muffin tin.
- Bake 10 minutes at 350 degrees. (Crust should be firmed up, but not completely browned.)
- While baking your crusts, gently mix blackberries, lemon juice, sea salt, vanilla, honey, and cornstarch in a large bowl.
- Remove muffin tin from oven and increase temperature to 375 degrees.
- Top each par-baked crust with blackberry mixture (around 3-4 berries on each).
- Bake at 375 for another 25 minutes.
- Serve warm.