Have you noticed there are not many Mediterranean Diet hot appetizer recipes out there? What’s a girl to do on game day when the rest of your family and friends is digging into fattening chicken wings, burgers, and pizza*? How about Healthy Spinach-Artichoke Ricotta Stuffed Mushrooms, a healthy game day recipe to the rescue! Seriously, these stuffed mushrooms are the bomb! Creamy and flavorful, with healthy ingredients that conform to the Mediterranean Diet way of eating. These mushrooms are so hearty, you could even make them for a meatless entreé.
Spinach Artichoke Ricotta Stuffed Mushrooms
Do you like stuffed mushrooms? I love them but they can be high in fat and calories, so I experimented with a recipe that had more vegetables and other healthy ingredients. Ricotta and parmesan cheese are allowed on the Mediterranean Diet in moderation and the cheese adds a nice creamy flavor. The quinoa holds the mixture together without the added bread crumbs, butter, and sausage you normally find in stuffed mushrooms.
Let’s talk about the ingredients for a moment. Why is this a healthier option? The mushrooms contain antioxidants, potassium, copper, and B Vitamins. The spinach contains iron, Vitamin B, C, K, and folic acid, the artichokes are low calorie and contain fiber and protein, and the quinoa adds a nice boost of protein, fiber, manganese, and riboflavin. Avocado oil instead of butter adds great flavor without the saturated fats.
Mozzarella cheese is high in protein and calcium, low in carbohydrates, and contains healthy probiotic bacteria. Although ricotta cheese is higher in carbohydrates, it is lower in fat and contains whey protein, healthy amino acids that lower blood pressure and reduce cholesterol. Finally, parmesan contains high levels of calcium and phosphorus, which helps to build bone mass. Healthy Spinach and Artichoke Stuffed Mushrooms are delicious little healthy flavor bombs!
A Few Notes
- If you want to make this recipe vegetarian, use plant-based egg or silk tofu instead of the egg.
- Use good whole milk ricotta, skim milk ricotta, or make your own ricotta, but make certain to strain it to get the extra moisture out.
- You can use portabella mushrooms instead of button mushrooms, but portabellas have a stronger mushroom flavor.
- If you don’t like the creaminess of the ricotta, reduce the ricotta to 1/2 cup but keep the rest of the ingredients the same.
- If you don’t like spicy foods, use mild green chilies instead of jalapeno.
- After you remove the mushrooms from the oven, let them sit for about five minutes to cool so the mixture inside is not runny.
- If your mushrooms look like they are drying out, brush with a little more avocado oil while cooking. As you can see mine got dried out a bit but they still tasted wonderful!