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Herby Spinach Quinoa Balls Recipe

herby spinach quinoa balls on plate
herby spinach quinoa balls on plate - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

A delightful fusion of wholesome ingredients and enticing flavors, these herby spinach quinoa balls by recipe developer Tanika Douglas are a versatile delight for any occasion. This recipe combines the nutty essence of white quinoa, creamy crumbled feta, and earthy spinach, all infused with the refreshing touch of parsley and dill. The outcome? Twenty snackable bites bursting with herb-infused goodness.

Crafted for ease, this recipe demands only 20 minutes of prep time and a mere 25 minutes of cooking. "A brief bake results in a tender interior and a delightful golden brown exterior with a satisfying crunch," Douglas says. "What takes these bites to the next level, though, is the accompanying garlic yogurt sauce: a creamy, zesty dip that perfectly complements the herby flavor of the spinach balls." Versatile and convenient, these herby spinach quinoa balls shine at gatherings, enhance any well-rounded meal, and are an excellent option for vegetarians seeking a savory, protein-rich meat alternative that's both nutritious and delicious.

Read more: The 20 Best Olive Oils For Cooking

Gather The Ingredients For Herby Spinach Quinoa Balls

ingredients for spinach quinoa balls
ingredients for spinach quinoa balls - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

Quinoa, a nutritional powerhouse known for its nutty flavor and complete protein profile, is the base for these herby spinach quinoa balls. While Douglas uses white quinoa, she recommends the red variety if you can't find it. The substitution won't significantly affect the flavor, but the color of the balls will be slightly darker. The other key ingredient is feta cheese, which Douglas says "adds a delightful tanginess and creamy richness that works perfectly with the other components."

You'll also need frozen spinach, fresh flat-leaf parsley, fresh dill, eggs, garlic, salt, and black pepper. "Parsley brings a clean, slightly peppery taste, while dill adds a refreshing, mildly anise-like undertone, creating a nuanced herbal blend," states Douglas. Lastly, the garlic yogurt sauce comes together with Greek yogurt, lemon juice, garlic, and salt.

Step 1: Preheat The Oven

oven pre-heating
oven pre-heating - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

Preheat oven to 390 F.

Step 2: Prepare Your Baking Dishes

greased baking dish
greased baking dish - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

Grease 2 baking dishes with cooking oil.

Step 3: Make The Quinoa-Spinach Mixture

quinoa spinach mixture in bowl
quinoa spinach mixture in bowl - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

In a large bowl, mix together the quinoa, feta, spinach, chopped parsley, chopped dill, eggs, minced garlic, salt, and pepper until well combined.

Step 4: Mold The Mixture Into Balls

molded vegetarian quinoa ball in hand
molded vegetarian quinoa ball in hand - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

Scoop up 1 tablespoon of the quinoa mixture, mold into a ball, and place into one of the prepared baking dishes.

Step 5: Add The Balls To The Baking Dishes

herby spinach quinoa balls in baking dish
herby spinach quinoa balls in baking dish - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

Repeat until all of the quinoa mixture has been used, spacing the balls apart so as not to overcrowd the baking dishes.

Step 6: Bake

baked herby quinoa spinach balls
baked herby quinoa spinach balls - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

Bake quinoa spinach balls for 20-30 minutes, or until golden brown.

Step 7: Make The Sauce

sauce in bowl
sauce in bowl - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

Meanwhile, make the sauce by combining the yogurt, lemon juice, garlic, and salt in a small bowl.

Step 8: Serve

herby spinach quinoa balls on plate
herby spinach quinoa balls on plate - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

Place herby quinoa spinach balls onto a serving plate with the garlic yogurt sauce, garnish with whole parsley leaves and dill sprigs, and serve.

Can I Make These Herby Spinach Quinoa Balls In Advance?

herby spinach quinoa balls dipped in sauce
herby spinach quinoa balls dipped in sauce - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

Absolutely! These herby quinoa spinach balls are an excellent choice for advance preparation, offering convenience without compromising on flavor or texture. Douglas says, "If you wish to prepare the mixture in advance, simply follow the recipe instructions up to the point of shaping the balls and arranging them on the baking dishes. Once shaped, cover the baking dishes tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and refrigerate for up to 1 day before baking."

Alternatively, if you've already baked the spinach balls, they can be stored for future use. Once baked and cooled, store them — along with the garlic yogurt sauce — in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The bites will also keep in the freezer for up to a month. Whether you're planning a party or simply looking for a convenient meal prep option, these herby quinoa spinach balls are a versatile, practical, and delicious choice for make-ahead convenience.

Can I Make These Herby Spinach Quinoa Balls With Different Herbs Besides Dill And Parsley?

herby spinach quinoa balls on plate
herby spinach quinoa balls on plate - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

Certainly! While parsley and dill keep these herby spinach quinoa balls light and fresh, Douglas says they will be just as delightful with other herbs. "For those seeking a more robust taste, incorporating herbs like thyme or rosemary can infuse the balls with a deeper aromatic essence. Thyme, with its slightly floral and earthy notes, can complement the nuttiness of quinoa and the richness of feta cheese. Rosemary, known for its pine-like aroma, adds a distinctive and aromatic quality to the balls."

Alternatively, try cilantro for a citrusy, slightly peppery taste, along with basil for a sweet and slightly spicy undertone. "Mint can also be a surprising addition, contributing a cooling and refreshing flavor that contrasts beautifully with the savory elements of the dish," Douglas adds. Whether you stick to the original parsley and dill blend or experiment with alternate herbs, Douglas recommends tasting as you go and adjusting the quantities as needed to balance the flavors.

Herby Spinach Quinoa Balls

hand taking herby spinach quinoa balls on plate
hand taking herby spinach quinoa balls on plate - Tanika Douglas/Tasting Table

Prep Time: 20mCook Time: 25mYield: 20 ballsIngredients

  • :::For the quinoa spinach balls:::

  • 2 cups cooked white quinoa

  • 7 ounces feta cheese, crumbled

  • 2 cups frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed of excess liquid

  • 3 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus more whole leaves for garnish

  • ¼ cup roughly chopped fresh dill, plus more whole sprigs for garnish

  • 2 eggs

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper

  • :::For the garlic yogurt sauce:::

  • ¾ cup Greek yogurt

  • Juice of ½ lemon

  • 1 clove garlic, minced

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Directions

  1. Grease 2 baking dishes with cooking oil.

  2. In a large bowl, mix together the quinoa, feta, spinach, chopped parsley, chopped dill, eggs, minced garlic, salt, and pepper until well combined.

  3. Scoop up 1 tablespoon of the quinoa mixture, mold into a ball, and place into one of the prepared baking dishes.

  4. Repeat until all of the quinoa mixture has been used, spacing the balls apart so as not to overcrowd the baking dishes.

  5. Bake quinoa spinach balls for 20-30 minutes, or until golden brown.

  6. Meanwhile, make the sauce by combining the yogurt, lemon juice, garlic, and salt in a small bowl.

  7. Place herby quinoa spinach balls onto a serving plate with the garlic yogurt sauce, garnish with whole parsley leaves and dill sprigs, and serve.

  8. ‌Store herby quinoa spinach balls in an airtight container for up to three days. Store the sauce in an airtight container for up to three days.

Read the original article on Tasting Table.