Quinoa Stuffed Tomatoes are a quick and healthy meal idea or side dish that you can make in under an hour. These baked tomatoes are stuffed with flavorful quinoa and spinach and topped with melty cheese.
Looking for more ways to turn fresh veggies into an all-in-one lunch or dinner? Try these Ricotta and Orzo Stuffed Tomatoes.
Cheesy Quinoa Stuffed Tomatoes
If you’re looking for the perfect light and easy meal idea to make ASAP, it’s these vegetarian stuffed tomatoes! This recipe for baked tomatoes loaded with quinoa is packed with tons of textures and flavor. The best part? It’s a multitasker. Make quinoa stuffed tomatoes as a vegetarian main, or make them as a side with your favorite recipes. And repeat.
These easy quinoa stuffed tomatoes are the meatless Monday lunch or dinner of dreams. I stuff fresh ripe tomatoes with protein-filled spinach, quinoa, and savory herbs, then bake them with plenty of gooey, melty mozzarella cheese.
Why You’ll Love This Stuffed Tomatoes Recipe
- Flavorful. Quinoa has a nutty, earthy taste that’s similar to brown rice, and it takes on the flavors of this recipe beautifully. Combined with garlicky sauteed spinach and fresh herbs, it’s the perfect filling for juicy, tangy tomatoes.
- Quick & Easy. This stuffed tomato recipe takes minutes to prep. Then all that’s left to do is bake! Have a healthy, hearty vegetarian lunch, dinner, or side dish ready in under an hour.
- High-Protein. Quinoa and spinach bring loads of plant protein to these cheesy stuffed tomatoes.
What Is Quinoa?
Quinoa is considered a whole grain; however, it isn’t technically a grain at all. It’s the seeds of the quinoa plant! The seeds are high in fiber, protein, and vitamins when compared to many grains. You’ll often find quinoa in the same grocery store aisle as other uncooked grains like rice and bulgur.
Which Is Healthier: Rice or Quinoa?
Like rice, quinoa is naturally gluten-free and tastes great in loads of recipes. Unlike rice, quinoa is a complete source of plant protein (hello, essential aminos!). One cup of quinoa also has more fiber than the same amount of rice. This makes it a healthier choice that can also keep you fuller for longer.
How to Make Stuffed Tomatoes With Quinoa
Who’s ready to get stuffing? Below is a quick overview of how to make quinoa stuffed tomatoes. Be sure to scroll down to the recipe card for an ingredient list and detailed instructions.
- Prep your ingredients. Slice off the tops of the tomatoes and hollow out the inside. Sprinkle with salt and arrange the hollowed tomatoes on a baking sheet. Next, bring the quinoa and water to a boil and then simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.
- Make the quinoa filling. In a skillet, saute the spinach with a bit of oil, salt, and pepper. Add in garlic and parsley, then take the pan off the heat and stir in the quinoa.
- Fill and bake the tomatoes. Spoon the filling into the tomatoes, cover them with foil, and then bake at 375ºF for 20 minutes.
- Add cheese. Sprinkle the mozzarella and parmesan over the top of the tomatoes before returning them to the oven uncovered. Bake for another 5 minutes, until the cheese is melted.
Here’s how to turn your quinoa stuffed tomatoes into a hearty lunch or healthy dinner:
Storing and Reheating Extras
Properly stored, these baked quinoa stuffed tomatoes make great leftovers. I like to chop my tomatoes up, filling and all, and toss them into salads the following day.
- Refrigerate any leftover stuffed tomatoes airtight for up to 3-4 days. Serve them at room temperature or reheat the stuffed tomatoes in the oven at 350ºF until warmed through.
- I don’t recommend freezing stuffed tomatoes, whether they’re cooked or uncooked. The tomatoes tend to become soft and mushy when they thaw.
More Vegetarian Recipes to Try
Preheat oven to 375˚F.
Slice off 1/2 inch of the stem end of the tomatoes and hollow out the inside.
Slice just a small section off of the bottom of the tomatoes so that they will sit flat on a baking sheet.
Sprinkle salt in the hollow portion of each tomato and place hollow side up on the baking sheet. Set aside.
Place water and quinoa in a saucepan and bring to a boil; lower to a simmer, cover, and cook for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a frying pan and stir in the spinach; season with salt and pepper, and cook until just wilted.
Stir in the garlic and parsley, cook for a minute longer, and remove from the burner.
Add cooked quinoa to the spinach and mix well.
Taste for salt and pepper and adjust accordingly.
Evenly divide the filling among the tomatoes.
Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.
Remove foil, sprinkle tops with parmesan cheese and mozzarella cheese.
Bake uncovered for an additional 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.
- Tomatoes: The best tomatoes for stuffing are large, round, plump tomatoes. Good choices are Beefsteak tomatoes, Roma tomatoes, and Campari tomatoes.
- Make Ahead: You can prepare the filling and stuff the tomatoes up to 1-2 days ahead. Instead of baking, cover the stuffed tomatoes airtight and refrigerate them until you’re ready to bake.
- Storage: Store leftover stuffed tomatoes in the fridge for 3 to 4 days. Enjoy leftovers cold or reheat them in the oven at 350ºF until warm.
- Serving: I’ll often budget 1-2 tomatoes per person when serving this as a main, and ½ to 1 tomato per person as a side dish.
- Substitute Quinoa: The quinoa in this recipe can be replaced with rice, bulgur wheat, lentils, or even couscous. Keep in mind that some grain varieties are not gluten-free.
- Cheese: Instead of mozzarella and parmesan, you can also top the quinoa stuffed tomatoes with crumbly feta, Monterey Jack, or shredded cheddar cheese.
Serving: 1 stuffed tomato | Calories: 176 kcal | Carbohydrates: 20 g | Protein: 9 g | Fat: 7 g | Saturated Fat: 3 g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1 g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2 g | Cholesterol: 15 mg | Sodium: 189 mg | Potassium: 560 mg | Fiber: 3 g | Sugar: 3 g | Vitamin A: 3269 IU | Vitamin C: 24 mg | Calcium: 156 mg | Iron: 2 mg | Net Carbs: 17 g
Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.