Thursday, July 18, 2024

Baked Broccoli Cheese Balls

Indulge in these Baked Broccoli Cheese Balls, a delightful twist on the traditional fried cheese balls. Baked for a healthier option without sacrificing flavor, these tasty morsels are perfect for any occasion, from game day snacks to a playful side dish. Pair them with marinara sauce for dipping, or alongside a fresh salad or warm soup for a satisfying meal.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups broccoli florets, finely chopped
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Cooking spray, for greasing

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or lightly greased foil.
  2. Steam the broccoli florets until tender-crisp, about 3-5 minutes. Allow to cool, then finely chop.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the chopped broccoli, breadcrumbs, cheddar, Parmesan, eggs, flour, garlic powder, and onion powder. Season with salt and pepper and mix well.
  4. Form the mixture into small, 1-inch diameter balls and place on the prepared baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown and firm.
  6. Allow to cool slightly before serving to avoid a scorching surprise.

Variations & Tips:

  • For a gluten-free version, substitute breadcrumbs with a gluten-free alternative.
  • Try different cheeses like mozzarella for stretchiness or pepper jack for a spicy kick.
  • Make ahead and freeze: Freeze formed balls on a baking sheet, then transfer to a freezer bag. Bake from frozen, adding a few extra minutes to the baking time.
  • Enhance nutrition by adding extra veggies like shredded carrots or chopped spinach.

These Broccoli Cheese Balls are irresistibly tasty and a great way to incorporate more vegetables into your diet. Serve them up for a delightful and satisfying experience!