Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Cheesy Broccoli Rice Cups for Dinner (or Lunch)

I love when you can throw a concoction of things together to come up with something easy, simple, and super yummy. I make rice with broccoli and cheese often, but was trying to come up with a way to make it a little more fun (and lunchbox friendly). I've seen everything under the sun made in muffin tins as of late, so I figured, why not this? It turns out that these work great as muffin tin ingredients, too! I packed up leftovers for hubby's lunch, and he ate them cold. At home, I warmed ours back up, and it worked like a charm. Yum!

Cheesy Broccoli Rice Cups
broccoli cheese riceIngredients - 1 1/2 c instant rice or rice of your choice (uncooked), 1 1/2 c vegetable broth, 1-12 oz bag frozen chopped broccoli (thawed and drained), 1 1/3 c shredded sharp cheddar, 1/3 c bottled Ranch dressing, 2 eggs, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper, 1/4 tsp garlic powder.

broccoli cheese rice muffinPreheat your oven to 350 degrees. Cook your rice according to package directions, using the broth rather than water, and let cool slightly. I used instant because it was quick and easy, but use whatever rice you like. Mix the rice with all the other ingredients, reserving 1/3 c of the cheddar, until blended. Scoop the rice mixture into 12 lightly greased muffin tin cups. Sprinkle the remaining cheddar on top of each one. Bake for 25-30 minutes until heated through and cheese is nice and browned. Use a spatula to gently loosen and lift each one out of the cups, and enjoy hot as a main with salad, a side dish, or let cool and pack it up for lunch! I'm sure you could substitute any veggie (as long as it wasn't too watery) and/or different cheese, probably even use quinoa rather than rice, and still have these turn out great. I would love to try a cauliflower and a smoked cheese variation next.

cheesy broccoli rice cups lunch
Vanilla Greek yogurt with Trader Joe's dried blueberries, celery, grape tomatoes, cucumber, mandarin orange, leftover cheesy broccoli rice cups, and ranch dressing.

In this lunch...