Buffalo Chicken Quinoa Casserole
January 20, 2016
Are you guys as pumped as I am for the NFC and AFC championships this weekend?
Maybe you live outside the US and you don’t know the first thing about American football.
Or maybe you do know about American football but couldn’t care less.
Or maybe — just like my friend David — you care only about College football and don’t give a damn about the NFL.
Whatever that may be, this weekend it’s time for the Conference finals and I DO CARE and I feel the need to talk about it. Alrite?
Since the Giants didn’t make it to the playoffs this year (I mean, what’s new…) I’m rooting for the Broncos — if for no other reason that I adore Peyton Manning, so GO BRONCOS!
The chances that Denver will make it to the Super Bowl are slim, but the game of football is unpredictable.
Anyways, we all know that game day means one thing: food (okay, maybe two, food + beer.)
And no one can deny that buffalo chicken wings are the quintessential game day food. No other snack food can compete.
It’s all about the sauce; ahh, the sauce. The mixture of butter and hot sauce that makes the wings so irresistible.
The sauce goes literally on everything. There’s no limit to where you can apply it — except for maybe cookies and cupcakes.
That’s why I decided that a casserole made with hot sauce + quinoa + chicken + tomato + topped with blue cheese could be a great addition to your game day table (and mine too for that matters!)
It’s almost as perfect as chicken wings (maybe even better) and I’m sure it will win over your family and friends.
It is truly delicious. It’s like chicken wings and blue cheese dip in casserole form with quinoa.
This dish covers it all.
I know I say this about every single recipe I make, but this Buffalo Chicken Quinoa Casserole is awesome.
So awesome you may even dream about it or start liking American football...who knows, the possibilities are endless...
Buffalo Chicken Quinoa Casserole Print this recipe!
1 cup quinoa, picked and rinsed well
2 cups of water
¼ teaspoon fine grain salt
2 small chicken breasts (about 4 oz / 113 gr each)
1 vegetable bouillon (I used Rapunzel)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 celery stalk
1 onion finely chopped
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1 (8 oz / 225 gr) can tomato sauce
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon garlic powder
6 to 8 tablespoons hot sauce (I used Frank’s Red Hot), adjust to taste
½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
½ cup blue cheese crumbles
Heat a splash of olive oil in the saucepan over medium-high heat, and add the quinoa. Cook, stirring, for about 1 minute, letting the water evaporate.
Add 2 cups of water and ¼ teaspoon of salt. Bring to a rolling boil, lower to a simmer (turn heat down to the lowest setting), cover, and cook for 15 minutes.
Remove from the heat and let stand for 5 more minutes, covered.
Remove the lid and fluff the quinoa gently with a fork (you should see tiny spirals separating from and curling around the quinoa seeds.) Set aside.
In the meantime, in a medium saucepan, place chicken breasts, celery stalk cut into big pieces, parsley, and cover with water. Add bouillon, bring to a boil, lower to simmer, and cook covered for 20 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.
Remove chicken, let cool, and shred with a fork. Set aside.
Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and sauté until translucent, about 6 minutes.
Add tomato sauce, tomato paste, salt, and pepper. Give a good stir, lower the heat, and let simmer for 7 to 8 minutes.
In a dry nonstick skillet over medium high heat, toss and toast quinoa with cayenne pepper, sweet paprika, and garlic powder for 2 minutes. Taste and season with salt. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C) and lightly grease a 8x8 baking dish (or a large cast iron skillet).
In a large bowl combine toasted quinoa, tomato mixture, shredded chicken, hot sauce, and half of the cheese.
Transfer quinoa mixture to the baking dish (or cast iron skillet) and top with remaining cheese.
Cover with foil and and bake for 20 minutes. Remove foil and bake for further 10 minutes.
Sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley and serve!
One serving yields 293 calories, 13 grams of fat, 20 grams of carbs, and 23 grams of protein.