Broccoli and Cheddar Quiche

Broccoli and Cheddar Quiche
Serves 6

One 9″ pie crust (store bought or homemade–I used store bought because I was in a hurry.)
1 large head of broccoli, cut into bite-sied chunks
1 whole egg
3 egg whites
Spices/Herbs (I used 1 tsp Penzey’s Sunny Paris. You can use the herbs of your preference.)
2 ounces shredded cheddar cheese

  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. If frozen, thaw the broccoli. If fresh, chop as directed and microwave until hot, but not soft (5 minutes.)
  3. Spray 9″ pie tin with cooking spray. Place pie crust inside. 
  4. Whisk egg and egg white.
  5. Drain excess water off broccoli, and place in pie shell. Sprinkle herbs over. 
  6. Sprinkle half the cheese over broccoli.
  7. Pour egg evenly. Top with remaining cheese.
  8. Bake 35-40 minutes.
Nutritional data:
Calories:         213
Fat:                12.8g
Sat fat:             3.8g
Chol:          40.2mg
Sodium:   248.9mg
Carbs:           16.3g
Fiber:              1.4g
Protein:             7g
Note: this recipe makes a small quiche. The egg filling is not deep. If you want this to be more substantial, double the egg and egg whites. Keep the broccoli and cheese the same.
You can also vary the ingredients. You can use different vegetable, or add meats. Use all whole eggs if you want. Your options are only limited by your imagination and the ingredients in your fridge and pantry.
Note: the link to Penzy’s is NOT an affiliate link. Affiliate links will earn me a small commission when readers purchase something. Not all links are affiliate links. Many are placed here only to make your cooking easier. When you do click on and buy an item from an affiliante link it does not change your cost at all, but it will help me continue to provide recipes and advice here and in my podcast Make Your Someday Today

Bacon-Cheddar Popcorn Salad

Bacon-Cheddar Popcorn Salad


I saw this in the deli at my local grocery store. I normally don’t shop the deli, because there is little to choose from that meets our caloric and sodium menu plans. However, they had a healthier version of potato salad that I wanted to try. (I didn’t buy it. It was made with yogurt–which I like–but in this case, the recipe wasn’t very good.)

But as the deli worker was getting my sample of the potato salad, I saw a bowl of this salad. Here is a little how my brain went:

“Hm.  This potato salad is not very good. And I think I need to get…wait. Is that bacon?  And cheese?  And popcorn?  All together????”

I left the deli without potato salad but with a container of the Bacon-Cheddar Popcorn Salad in my cart.

It was really good. A definite ranch-ish flavor, built on fresh popped popcorn, a lot of bacon chunks mixed with shredded cheddar cheese and diced scallions, all in a mayo-type base.

I don’t have a recipe yet. And I don’t know if I want to toy with this. Maybe the secret will be to use this salad as a reward on rare occasions and just limit how much I eat. I don’t know. But it is fun to find such unique combinations of favorite foods.

Now, here is my question:

How can I make that recipe, but make it healthier?  (In other words, low sodium?) I can use low-sodium bacon (that is the bacon of choice here at home), but the cheese and mayo is sodium heavy. Would it be worth making my own mayo from scratch and leaving salt out?

Bacon-Corn Broccoli Slaw and Jalapeno-Cheddar Polenta

Bacon-Corn Broccoli Slaw 
Serves 4

2 strips bacon (reserve 3 tablespoons bacon grease)
1 cup frozen corn kernels (or the equivalent cut from the fresh cobs.)
1/2 cup diced onion
12 ounce package of pre-cut broccoli slaw

1/2 cup Greek yogurt
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon ranch dressing
1 teaspoon your preferred herb blend (I used Penzey’s Sunny Paris.)

  1. Fry bacon until crisp. Remove from the pan. Chop into a smallish pieces.
  2. Add corn and onion to the pan. Over medium heat, saute until the corn begins to brown (5-6 minutes.)
  3. While the corn and onions caramelize, mix yogurt, vinegar, ranch dressing and herb blend together. Taste, and add salt, pepper or sugar to taste.)
  4. Put broccoli slaw mix in a bowl. Top with yogurt dressing. Add corn and onions, and bacon.  Toss to coat. 
  5. Serve warm or cold.
Nutritional data: (6 ounces by weight per serving)
Calories:         129
Fat:                   7g
Sat fat:              2g
Chol:           8.9mg
Sodium:      142mg
Carbs:          12.1g
Fiber:             1.9g
Protein:             5g

Jalapeno Cheddar Polenta
Serves 4

1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
1/2 cup onion, diced
16 ounces fluid (I used half beer, half water)
1/2 cup dried polenta
1/8 cup shredded cheddar

  1. Preheat non-stick skillet over med-high. Spray with cooking spray. 
  2. Saute pepper and onion for 3-5 minutes, until the pepper begins to get brown.
  3. While you are doing that, bring your liquid to a boil.
  4. Add the polenta to the boiling liquid.
  5. Turn heat down and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  6. Stir in peppers and onions.
  7. Top with a bit of cheese when serving.
(Note that my polenta is brown, but only because I used a dark beer.)

Nutritional data: (4 ounces by weight per serving)
Calories:          113
Fat:                 1.2g
Sat fat:            0.7g
Chol:            3.7mg
Sodium:      25.3mg
Carbs:           18.8g
Fiber:              2.3g
Protein:            2.8g

Bacon and Cheddar Stuffed Mushrooms

Bacon and Cheddar Stuffed Mushrooms
Makes 24 Mushrooms

24 large button mushrooms
2 slices bread, torn
3 tablespoons bacon bits (or 2 slices bacon, crumbled)
1 cup finely shredded cheddar cheese

  1. Remove stems from cleaned mushrooms. Finely mince the stems.
  2. Preheat oven to 375F.
  3. Preheat a 10″ non-stick skillet and spray with cooking spray.
  4. Add minced mushrooms stems. Saute until then get soft (4-6 minutes.)
  5. Add torn bread. Continue to cook and stir until the bread becomes well-mixed.
  6. Add bacon. Stir.
  7. Add cheese and remove from the heat. Stir until well-mixed.
  8. Fill each cap with a teaspoon of filling.
  9. Place all caps in a 9×13 baking pan.
  10. Bake, uncovered for 30-45 minutes, or until the mushrooms get hot and the stuffing browns.

Nutritional data (per mushroom):
Calories:     29
Fat:           1.9g
Sat fat:      1.1g
Chol:        5.5mg
Sodium:  72.4mg
Carbs:       1.2g
Fiber:        0.3g
Protein:     2.1g

Onions, garlic instead of bacon
Crab meat instead of bacon
Onion and avocado instead of bacon and cheddar
Onion, sausage and mozzarella instead of bacon and cheddar
Sun-dried tomato, garlic and mozzarella instead of bacon and cheddar
Onion, black olive and feta instead of bacon and cheddar
Minced ham and shredded Swiss instead of bacon and cheddar

Broccoli and Cheddar Frittata

Broccoli and Cheddar Frittata
Serves 4

12 ounce bag of frozen broccoli florets, thawed
2 tablespoons onions, diced
8 egg whites
2 whole eggs
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese

1.   Turn on your oven broiler to high.
2.   Separate the 8 eggs into a large bowl.  Throw away the yolks (or use an equivalent amount of egg white or egg substitute.)
4.   Add the two whole eggs to the bowl of whites and whisk until fully mixed.
5.   Place olive oil in an oven-safe non-stick skillet. When hot, add onion and saute for 2-3 minutes.
6.   Add the broccoli and saute for 5-8 minutes over med-high heat.
7.   Pour the egg mixture over the broccoli. Allow to set for 1 minute.
8.   Using the edge of a rubber scraper, carefully lift one edge of the eggs and tilt the skillet so that raw eggs run into that pocket. Repeat all around the edge until most of the surface is wet, but setting.
9.   Sprinkle the cheese on the eggs and place under the broiler for 5 minutes.
10. Cut into fourths and serve immediately.

Nutritional data:
Calories:        203
Fat:              12.3g
Sat fat:           4.9g
Chol:             226mg
Sodium:         289mg
Carbs:            5.6g
Fiber:             1.8g
Protein:        18.9g

This is very similar to my earlier recipe, Broccoli and Cheddar Quiche, but without the crust, which greatly reduces the carbs, fats and calories.

Use more whole eggs (1 whole egg will replace 2 egg whites)
Experiment with different cheeses
Use different vegetables
Add meats

Wild Rice, Cheddar and Spinach Pie

 Wild Rice, Cheddar and Spinach Pie

Serves 6

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
1 box frozen, chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
3 cups cooked wild rice
1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese
3 whole eggs, whisked together
Cooking spray

1.  Preheat oven to 425F.
2.  Heat a non-stick skillet, add the oil. Saute the onions until beginning to brown (about 4-5 minutes.)
3.  Add garlic and spinach. Stir together for 1-2 minutes.
4.  Remove from heat, and put onion/spinach in a large bowl.
5.  Add 3 cups cooked wild rice and cheese.  Stir to mix.
6.  Add eggs, stir until evenly mixed.
7.  Spray a pie pan with cooking spray. Spread mixture into pan, smooth and place in oven for 25 minutes.  When baked, remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.

My suggestions for improving/adding flavor:
Replace the cheddar with an equal amount of feta or bleu cheese.
Add Kalamata olive (especially if using feta cheese.)
Add green Spanish olive (especially if using bleu cheese.)
Add bacon or diced smoked ham.
Add jalapenos (especially if keeping the cheddar cheese.)
Increasing the cheese to a full cup.

Nutritional data for the pie as I made it:
Calories:         295
Fat:                  8.7g
Sat fat:             3.1g
Chol:              115mg
Sodium:          114mg
Carbs:            41.7g
Fiber:               3.4g
Protein:          13.2g

Broccoli and Cheddar Quiche

Broccoli and Cheddar Quiche

1 prepared pie crust (or your preferred pie crust recipe)

1/2 cup onion, diced
1 cup mushrooms, sliced
1 clove garlic, crushed
fresh ground black pepper, to taste
1 tsp olive oil

1 cup cottage cheese
1 whole egg
2 egg whites
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/4 cup cheddar cheese
12 ounce bag of frozen, chopped broccoli, thawed and drained.

Preheat oven to 350F

1.  Grease 9 inch pie tin, place pie crust in tin
2.  Sautee onions, mushrooms and garlic over medium heat in olive oil until soft (5-6 minutes)
3.  While onions and mushrooms cook, separate eggs.  Add egg whites and the whole egg to the cottage cheese.  Add mustard.  Mix until smooth. 
4.  Stir in cheddar cheese and broccoli.
5.  Stir in onions and mushrooms.
6.  Pour mixture into pie crust.
7.  Cook 35-40 minutes, or until a sharp knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
8.  Let rest 5 minutes.  Serves 4

Calories:     382
Fat:              21.8g
Sat Fat:          6.4g
Chol:              66mg
Sodium:       534mg
Carb:           29.2g
Fiber:            2.6g
Protein:         16.2g