An easy cheesy casserole with fresh juicy tomatoes, soft melted mozzarella cheese, fluffy protein-packed quinoa, and delicious basil pieces. Thrown in the oven to melt the flavors together and then drizzled with a simple balsamic reduction to make a caprese casserole masterpiece that anyone can make for an easy gluten-free weeknight meal.
With summer winding down (starts to whimper), someone forgot to tell the garden tomatoes to start to close down shop (and this girl is not complaining!). So I have been making every dinner in the past week with tomatoes as a key player in my recipes. I’d hate to have all of my delicious juicy homegrown tomatoes go to waste!
I started the week off with my Slower Cooker Chicken Cacciatore recipe that uses my garden tomatoes and am winding the week down with this recipe, one of my all-time favorites.
On top of the delicious amounts of tomatoes, this recipe calls for fluffy quinoa that it topped with a layer of tomatoes, followed by slices of fresh mozzarella and then baked until warm and the cheesy is melty and warm.
After taking it out of the oven, it is sprinkled in a healthy amount of fresh basil and drizzled with balsamic vinegar. It wouldn’t be a caprese casserole without the basil and balsamic no would it?!?
We have a crazy amount of fresh tomatoes in our kitchen even after making this cheesy melty weeknight dish. So I guess the recipes with tomatoes will continue until they are all gobbles up. I’m determined!
What ingredients do I need to make Caprese Quinoa Casserole?
- 2 cups cooked quinoa
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 red onion, diced
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- 2 slices medium tomatoes, sliced into 1/4″
- 8 ounces fresh part-skim mozzarella cheese, sliced into 1/4–inch rounds
- 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- cracked pepper to taste
How to make Caprese Quinoa Casserole:
- Preheat your oven to 400*F. Cook the quinoa according to package directions, fluff, and set aside.
- Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute until fragrant and tender Approx. 2-3 minutes).
- Add the onion/garlic mix, red pepper flakes, and the basil to the quinoa. Place this entire mixture into a casserole dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
- Place tomato slices and mozzarella circles on top of the quinoa, alternating between the two.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and turning a golden brown.
- Prepare the balsamic reduction drizzle while the casserole is baking: In a small sauce pan, heat the balsamic vinegar until it simmers and let simmer for 4-5 minutes, until the liquid reduces and becomes thicker, like syrup consistency.
- Drizzle the reduction on top of the cooked casserole and garnish with fresh cracked pepper. Serve by itself or with your favorite protein. Enjoy!
Any delicious additions to add to this recipe?
We usually throw a few chicken breasts in the oven alongside this caprese quinoa casserole. A juicy chicken breast with this madness on top of it…. a good freakin’ idea.
What about the Caprese Quinoa Casserole toppings?
- Putting a simple and yummy balsamic reduction drizzle on top of the toasted cheesy top, really makes this dish caprese-legit.
- I’m a HUGE fan of basil so I load up my casserole with bunches of basil leaves. I also add some chopped basil on the very top to make this dish look pretty darn fancy.
- Adding a dash of cracked pepper will help the fancy look if that’s what you’re going for!
Want more caprese recipes?
Well here you go!