Looking for a delicious appetizer? Spinach and Kale Bites are little vegetable balls loaded with spinach, kale, and Parmesan cheese. Then they are lightly coated with panko breadcrumbs and baked until crispy and tender. These little bites burst with spinach and Parmesan cheese flavor! The taste of kale is completely hidden in this little appetizer, making them the ideal snack for picky eaters.
I saw these little spinach and kale bites in the freezer section at Trader Joe’s and since I got hooked on Kale for the first time a few years ago, making scrumptious kale drinks like kale smoothies, I bought a box and tried them for the first time.
They were very tasty, but a little too salty and a bit expensive.
So I decided to make them myself and duplicate the recipe as close as possible, only I decided to roll them in panko breadcrumbs for some crunch.
The outcome was really terrific, crunchy on the outside, and super moist on the inside. The Parmesan cheese definitely adds depth of flavor to them.
Can I Make Spinach and Kale Bites in Advance?
- These are easy enough to make a day in advance for a party, and throw in the oven when guests arrive.
- They’re amazingly light and festive, definitely worthy of a fancy dinner or a holiday party.
- Terrific to serve at football parties too.
Can I Freeze Them?
- You can make these spinach and kale bits and freeze them before you bake them.
- They will keep frozen for up to one month.
- Some have baked them and then froze them and that worked for them too.
Can We Make These Bites Vegan or Dairy-free?
- Yes, you can. There are so many options these days for you to swap out certain ingredients and make this vegan or dairy-free.
- Here’s a Tip from one of our comments below: “You can make ‘parmesan’ by combining 3/4 cup cashews, 1/4 tsp. garlic powder, 3/4 tsp. sea salt & 3 Tbsp. of nutritional yeast then blitz in a food processor.”
- “I’m not sure how this will differ in taste from those with parmesan but these were so so yummy.”
Additional Delicious Appetizers!
You can also try our mini rice balls as another fun appetizer, and our cold spinach dip for an easy make-ahead spinach dip!
Plus, you might enjoy our favorite post for Baked Vegetable Bird’s Nests, also a copycat recipe from Trader Joe’s.
NOTES and TIPS for Spinach and Kale Bites…
- If you omit the panko breadcrumbs from this recipe, you’ll have gluten-free spinach and kale bites.
- These bites can be expensive to buy frozen at Trader Joe’s (about $5 for 10 bites).
- And, most frozen foods are packed with high levels of sodium as well as some other unknown ingredients.
- When you make them yourself, they’re definitely fresher and more cost-effective.
- I love them because they’re baked not fried, and loaded with antioxidants and vitamins A, C, and K, plus I’m giving my family a healthier snack instead of junk food.
Some ingredients you will need (with links to Amazon):
*Full recipe card below!
How to Make these Spinach and Kale Bites?
1. When working with this recipe, use 2 bowls or dishes, and pour some panko bread crumbs into one.
2. Then take a teaspoon full of the spinach and kale mixture into your hand. Make a small ball with your hands (larger than a quarter, smaller than a golf ball).
3. Next, gently roll the ball into panko bread crumbs to coat evenly.
4. Then bake them for 20 to 35 minutes and serve!
And if you LOVE these spinach and kale bites, then try our Spinach and Kale Quiche– it is scrumptiously delicious too!!
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More Tasty Ideas!
- 1 small yellow onion- chopped
- 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 Tbsp. salted butter
- 6-ounce package fresh baby spinach (the equivalent to 5 oz. of frozen)
- 2 cups packed with fresh kale, rinsed
- 1 large scallion (green onion)
- 1 egg
- 2/3 cup panko bread crumbs, plus extra for coating
- 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- salt and pepper to taste
- dash of organic cayenne pepper
- organic olive oil cooking spray
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- In a frying pan, heat and melt butter with olive oil. Add yellow onion and sauté until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add spinach and kale and cook until they wilt about 1 to 2 minutes.
- Place cooked contents into a food processor along with one chopped scallion and pulse for several seconds. Transfer mixture to a medium-size mixing bowl.
- Add one egg, 2/3 cup of panko bread crumbs, and Parmesan cheese. Mix with a spoon until well combined. Add salt and black pepper to taste and a dash of cayenne pepper.
- In a second smaller bowl or dish, pour some panko bread crumbs. Take a teaspoon full of the spinach and kale mixture into your hand. Make a small ball with your hands (larger than a quarter, smaller than a golf ball).
- Gently roll the ball into panko bread crumbs to coat evenly.
- Lightly spray the baking sheet with cooking spray. Place the spinach and kale bites onto the baking sheet. Bake for 20 to 35 minutes. Serve warm.
- Yields: 20 bites
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xo Anna and Liz
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