Aug 14, 2012

Healthy Eats: Zucchini Nugs

I have a really awesome co-worker who gardens and makes her own wine and brings in lots of treats to share all the time. She's also a badass when it comes to training big dogs, running a whole Planetarium, and talking science :D This summer, her garden was particularly fruitful so she brought in lots of zucchini, kale, garlic, and beets for us all to take home. I was especially grateful because I always want to cook with fresh produce, but I can never get to our local farmer's market on time since I work weekends :/ But with Sue's goodies from her garden, it was like the market came to me! I came up with a list of recipes I've always wanted to try, but have never gotten around to because of my lack of certain kinds of produce.
For the zucchini, I decided to poke around at different nugget recipes for inspiration. I've seen lots of yummy-looking dishes for grated zucchini baked up in cupcake tins to be like a healthy alternative to tater tots, but none of them really measured up to my hopes of large proportions of fresh produce to eggs and bread for a big fiber factor. I figure if you're going to go with fresh produce, go at it in a big way! So I loaded up my version with not only zucchini, but also fresh mushrooms and fresh spinach.

Zucchini Nugs

Things you'll need:
  • 1 medium zucchini, grated and drained
  • 2 eggs or 1/2 cup egg substitute (I used Best of the Egg)
  • 1/2 cup spinach, rough chopped
  • 1/4 red onion, diced
  • 2 medium crimini mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp red chili powder
  • 12 cupcake liners (I used my silicone set and they worked perfectly)
  • cupcake tin with 12 cups
  • bowl
  • mixing spoon
Make sure the grated zucchini is well drained. I put mine in a bed of paper towels, wrap the towels around it and squeeze over the sink to get the juice out. Someday I'll invest in some cheese cloth XD
Preheat your oven to 400°F. In the bowl, mix all the ingredients together. Make sure the bread crumbs, cheese, and eggs are evenly distributed though the mixture.
Grab a soup spoon and scoop the mixture into all 12 cup liners. Put in the oven and check after 15 minutes. Zugs are done when the eggs are completely set, no liquid at all, and the very tippy tops are brownish.
These come out like scrambled eggs cups, so next time I'll try to cut down the egg I use to get them to be more tater totty. But scrambled egg cups are really good, especially when they are loaded with fresh produce :) Serving suggestion: get a little fat free plain Greek yogurt on them while they're hot along with some homemade flat bread <3 Since I am still just one little girl who cannot eat 12 zucchini nugs all to herself in one sitting, I muched two with my lunch and then wrapped the rest in wax paper and froze them. To reheat, I preferred to set them back in the oven (no need for cupcake liners this time) at 350° - 400°F for about 5 minutes, they taste just as delicious as when they first came out of the oven.
Nutritional Information: 6 servings (2 nugs per serving); Calories:109.9, Total Fat: 3.2 g, Sat. Fat: 1.7 g, Cholesterol: 6.7 mg, Sodium: 264.9 mg, Potassium: 77.4 mg, Total Carbs.: 11.1 g, Fiber: 1.4 g, Sugar: 0.9 g, Protein: 8.9 g
This recipe is also available at SparkRecipes

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