Broccoli Cheddar Quiche
Broccoli Cheddar Quiche- Fresh veggies, plenty of cheese, and a creamy custard make up this egg pie that’s perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
January 31, 2022 by Nicole Collins
You know what we haven’t done in a while?
At least not intentionally…
And wouldn’t you know, today is Monday and I have a meatless recipe to share.
Talk about the stars aligning!
I started eating more meatless meals early on in the pandemic more so out of necessity. When I was trying to make less frequent trips to the grocery store, I had to learn how to work with what I had on hand.
And, I ALWAYS have eggs on hand if nothing else.
But as I got used to meatless, protein filled substitutions…lentils, chickpeas, quinoa, mushrooms…I started cooking more meatless meals out of convenience. I don’t have to forward think about taking things out of the freezer and thawing times with my meatless proteins. And, that allows for more day to day creativity with my meals.
Though I don’t think I could ever go full vegetarian (I love seafood too much) or full vegan (I love dairy too much), I do see the frequency of meatless meals expanding at my house.
So, let’s start with today’s recipe!
Today, we’re making Broccoli Cheddar Quiche!
Not only is this a super diverse, meatless meal. It’s also super budget friendly. We just need a handful of fresh veggies, a hearty helping of cheese, some eggy custard, and a pie shell to make a delicious meal that works for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner!
First, let’s talk quiche crust, as that’s secretly my favorite part of any pie. We’re going to make things nice and simple on ourselves by using a store bought refrigerated pie crust. Now, if you’re totally anti pre-made crusts, you can absolutely make your own favorite recipe. But, I think supermarket pie crusts work perfectly here.
We’re going to blind bake our pie crust to help it along. We don’t want to have a nice and creamy quiche sitting atop a soggy crust, so blind baking helps the crust get a head start to browning up before we load it up with all of our delicious fillings. It’s as simple as pressing the pie crust into your dish, lining it with a piece of parchment paper, and filling it 2/3 of the way full with pie weights. Now, you can buy pie weights specifically for this purpose, but I keep a jar of dried beans and rice on standby to use as my weights. You won’t be able to use these for eating afterwards; but jar them back up, and keep them on hand for your next pie. Either way, we’re going to bake the crust with the weights for about 15 minutes to make sure the bottom crust doesn’t puff up. Then, we’ll remove the weights and let the bottom get some uncovered oven time.
While the crust blind bakes, we can get started on our veggies. We’re going super simple here. We only need half of an onion, half of a red bell pepper, and a heaping cup and a half of fresh broccoli. I’m usually a big proponent of swapping in frozen veggies as a time saver, but that’s not going to work for us here. To no fault of their own, frozen veggies are naturally going to be a little wetter with some extra water content from their time in the freezing/defrosting stages. And, wet things are not our friend in this quiche. So, stick with fresh produce for this recipe.
The veggies will go in a skillet with some olive oil to help them soften up and to help pull out some of that extra moisture from the veggies. We’re also going to give the veggies a little flavor love by seasoning them with some good ol’ salt and pepper plus some garlic powder and a little smoked paprika. For me growing up, anything broccoli cheddar flavored usually came alongside some ham. So, the smoked paprika helps to subtly add that smoky flavor without having to add any meat. It’s really a great trick!
Once our crust has finished round one of baking, we’ll spread our veggies over the bottom, top the veggies with a handful of cheddar cheese, then finish the masterpiece with a custardy mix of egg, heavy cream, and milk. Before we send the quiche to the oven to finish baking, we want to protect the exposed edges of our crust so that it doesn’t burn. To do this, we could use a pie shield or some good ol’ fashioned aluminum foil. We only want to cover the crust and not any of the filling, so silicone pie shields are nice because they’re designed specifically to wrap around the edge of your pie plate. But, though it takes a little more effort, connecting strips of tin foil to wrap around the outer edge of the quiche does work just as well.
Our quiche only needs about 30-40 minutes in the oven, then about 15 mins to relax after baking. But then, we get to dig in! That crust will be perfectly crisp and golden around the edges. The filling will be smooth and creamy. And, those veggies add nice little bursts of texture to make the filling a little more interesting. And since this quiche does GREAT served basically any time of day, you can get creative with your side accompaniments. This quiche likes taters. This quiche likes berries. This quiche likes salad. This quiche likes everything!
Ok, everyone! I’m going to try to get us back on the Meatless Monday bandwagon; so if you have any requests, let me know!
Until then…enjoy! And, let’s eat!
Broccoli Cheddar Quiche
Serves: 6 Print
1 refrigerated pie crust, thawed according to package directions
1 ½ tbsp olive oil
1 ½ cups broccoli florets, chopped
½ small white/yellow onion, diced
½ red pepper, diced
¼ tsp + ½ tsp salt, divided
¼ tsp + ¼ tsp pepper, divided
¼ tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp smoked paprika
1 cup shredded cheddar
¾ cup milk (I used 2%)
½ cup heavy cream
Blind bake the crust: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Press pie crust into a 9 inch pie plate. Lay a piece of parchment paper on top of the pie crust, and top with pie weights (or dried beans/rice), making sure the weight evenly distributed along the bottom and against the sides of the pie crust. The dish should be about 2/3 full. Bake the pie crust for 15 mins. Remove the parchment paper and beans, and place the crust back in the oven for 7-10 minutes until the crust is a light golden color. Remove the pie weights and parchment, and set aside.
Meanwhile, prepare the veggies: Heat olive oil in a non stick skillet over medium high heat. Add broccoli, onion, red pepper, ¼ tsp salt, ¼ tsp pepper, garlic powder, and smoked paprika. Toss to coat, and saute for 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the veggies start to soften. Set aside to cool slightly.
Make the custard: Add milk, cream, eggs, ½ tsp salt, and ¼ tsp pepper to a large measuring cup or mixing bowl with a spout. Whisk well until the eggs are fully broken down and incorporated with the liquids, about 1 minute.
Assemble the quiche: Spread the veggies over the bottom of the par-baked pie crust. Top with shredded cheese. Carefully pour the egg custard mix over the fillings. Cover the outer edges of the crust with a pie shield or aluminum foil, making sure not to touch the custard. Bake at 375 degrees for 30-40 mins until the center is just barely set and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the quiche to rest for 10-15 minutes before serving. Enjoy!
*Homemade or store bought pie crust will work for this recipe. I cheated and used store bought.
*Blind baking the pie crust helps to keep the crust from getting soggy from our fillings. The beans act as a weight so the crust doesn't puff up while it's baking. I keep a bag of cheap pinto beans mixed with white rice in the pantry that I reuse solely for the purpose of blind baking pie crust. You can't reuse the beans or rice for cooking and eating, but you can use them over and over as pie weights.
*Frozen vegetables will not work as a substitute for fresh in this recipe. They hold too much water content and will make the quiche soggy. Stick with fresh veggies for this one.
*This is the pie shield I use. Alternately, cut strips of aluminum foil and wrap it around the outer edges of the pie plate to cover the exposed pie crust only. Don't allow it to touch the filling. Foil takes a little more time to assemble, but it gets the job done just fine. Either way, we need to make sure to cover those outer edges of crust, or it will get done too quickly or potentially burn.
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