Revel in the flavor decadence of vegan mini quiches with spinach and our favorite sheet-pan bacon and savor every bite of these sumptuously healthy morsels
This recipe is all about taking three things we love – spinach, plant-based bacon, and simple gluten-free, egg-free quiche baked up mini style. The result is healthy decadence – the best kind!
Sheet pan plant-based bacon
I’m always hunting for a new recipe involving my favorite plant-based bacon recipe. The ‘sheet pan’ approach means that there is no time for marinating required. You’ll just want to press it for 20 minutes and then add everything to your food processor and spread it on a baking sheet.
What you’ll need:
8 oz. (250 gm.) tofu
¼ cup (60 ml) tamari or soy sauce
1 Tbsp. maple syrup
1 Tbsp. liquid smoke
2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
½ tsp. onion powder
½ tsp. garlic powder
½ tsp. black pepper
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
8 ounces of tofu will be more than enough to yield 1 cup of bacon bits needed for the mini quiches. If you can maintain the willpower not to snack on the leftover, you will have enough for a couple of bacon sandwiches or you could even split the batch and have spinach, apple, and bacon salad tomorrow or the next day.
Because I’ve made a lot of this stuff, I have a systematic approach to crisping up sheet pan bacon. Start by spreading it as evenly as you can on the parchment paper-lined baking tray. That helps it bake evenly.
To flip it, grab another piece of parchment paper and cutting board. Lay the parchment paper over the top and then the board and flip everything over. Once you’ve flipped it, peel away the top parchment paper, and then, gently slice the bacon into strips and separate them a bit. Grab the paper and transfer the flipped bacon back onto the baking tray and into the oven. This process might seem a bit fiddly, but it’s really easy and it leads to crispy, evenly baked bacon. And that’s what we’re after.
Before you add the chopped spinach and bacon, you want to be sure your quiche batter is not too thick (or thin). I added 1 ½ cups of plant milk to 2 cups of chickpea flour which created a smooth batter. To bring out the flavor, I added the following ingredients:
2 T nutritional yeast – for a little savory, cheesy flavor
1 T Dijon mustard – that will give you a bit of tanginess, smoothness. and color
½ tsp. garlic powder
¼ tsp. cayenne powder
½ tsp. salt – this is optional, your bacon and mustard may give you enough saltiness depending on your taste preferences
If 4 cups of chopped spinach might seem like a lot. It’s not. As the quiches bake, the moisture of the spinach will release and help keep them moist and it will reduce the spinach. You won’t be spinach overpowered, just spinach powered with this one.
If fresh spinach isn’t an option for you, I’ve also made this with chopped kale. You won’t get as much reduction, so you may want to reduce the amount to 3 – 3 ½ cups. It would also be a good idea to sauté or steam it first to help it soften.
If you want to put your own signature mini quiche signature you could also add some diced oven-dried tomatoes, a tablespoon of chopped herbs such as basil, parsley, or dill or a tablespoon of chopped red onion. It’s a great time to get creative.
I used an 8-cup muffin tin with ‘spring’ bottoms, but any non-stick muffin tin will do. You could also make the entire recipe in a traditional quiche pan. In that case, reduce the oven heat to 4000 F (2000 C) for even baking. It will take about 20 minutes in that case.
Despite how anxious you are to start eating them (and you will be), I’ve discovered that it’s easiest to remove the baked mini quiches if you allow them to sit for 5 minutes or so. They will start to cool just a bit and retract from the sides of the tin. You can also gently run a dull knife around the edges to loosen them slightly.
There are times when a bit of kitchen magic happens and usually, that involves ingredients we love. Not a surprise that that quiche creating included plant-based bacon and spinach – I could make a sandwich with just that and go away happy. And to be honest, traditional quiche made with eggs wasn’t anything I missed about a plant-based diet. But I’d miss the vegan version for sure.
I never dwell on recreating my past ‘bad’ nutritional practices through recipes. It never tastes the same and there are just too many good things out there to eat. Leave the past behind, let go of any mistakes you might have made. That’s unproductive. Learn from it, forgive it, and move on. Make a few mini quiches and think about how far you’ve come – even if that’s just in the moment of the very first bite. That’s the progress we can savor. Peace.Print
Revel in the flavor decadence of vegan mini quiches with spinach and our favorite sheet-pan bacon and savor every bite of these sumptuously healthy morsels.
Plant-based Bacon (note – this recipe will make more than one cup of diced bacon bites)
- 8 oz. (250 gm.) tofu
- ¼ cup (60 ml) tamari or soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp. maple syrup
- 1 Tbsp. liquid smoke
- 2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
- ½ tsp. onion powder
- ½ tsp. garlic powder
- ½ tsp. black pepper
- ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
For the mini quiches
- 2 cups chickpea flour
- ½ tsp. garlic powder
- ½ tsp. cayenne powder
- ½ tsp. salt (optional)
- 2 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
- 1 ½ cups plant milk
- 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
- 4 cups chopped fresh spinach
- 1 cup plant-based bacon bites
Start by making the plant-based bacon.
- Rinse the tofu and cut it into quarters. Press it using a tofu press or wrap the tofu in a paper towel and lay it on a plate covered by another plate weighed down by a few cans or something else heavy. Press for 20 minutes.
- preheat at 4000 F (2000 C) and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
- Add the tofu, tamari, maple syrup, liquid smoke, vinegar, onion, and garlic powder, black pepper, and cayenne pepper to a food processor with a blade and process the ingredients until smooth.
- Turn the tofu onto the baking tray and use a spoon to spread it evenly. Try to spread it to a consistent thickness of ¼ inch (thicker if you want).
- Place the tofu in the center rack of the heated oven and bake until the tofu starts to firm up and brown (about 20 – 25 minutes).
- Once browned, remove the baking tray from the oven (leave the oven on). Cover the tray with a clean piece of parchment paper and over that, a chopping board or another baking tray. Flip the baking tray (with the tofu) and remove the original parchment paper.
- Gently cut the tofu into bacon slices and separate them slightly. Lift or slide the parchment paper and tofu onto the baking tray and return it back to the oven.
- Continue baking for an additional 5-10 minutes until it is browned.
- Once the bacon cools, dice it into 1 cup of bite-sized pieces. Reserve any remaining bacon for a sandwich or just snacking.
- While the bacon cooks, you can prepare everything else.
- Preheat the oven to 4250 F (2200 C).
- For the batter, add the chickpea flour, nutritional yeast, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, and optional salt. Mix everything well.
- Preheat the oven to 4250 F (2200 C).
- Add the plant milk and Dijon mustard and mix until you have a batter.
- Mix in the chopped spinach and bacon bits and spoon the batter into baking cups.
- Bake the quiches for 15 minutes or until they firm up and start to brown slightly on the top and around the edges.
- Allow the quiches to sit for 5 minutes after baking before you remove them from the baking cups.
- Prep time and cooking time includes making the sheet pan bacon.
- Store leftover bacon in the refrigerator in a tightly sealed container.
- If you use frozen spinach, be sure to let it thaw thoroughly and press as much moisture as possible before adding it to the batter. Because there may be more moisture in frozen spinach, hold back ½ cup of plant milk until you mix everything in and then add a bit more milk if necessary.
- I’ve not tried baking these in paper muffin cups, but that might be an option for quiches on the go. If you end up making them extra big, reduce the cooking temperature to 4000 F so the middle cooks through.
- Category: Main Courses
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: vegan mini quiches with spinach and bacon