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Pie crust proves to be difficult to make, even when it’s not gluten-free (GF). I thought to myself, doesn’t everyone want a flaky pie crust as opposed to a mealy one? That tends to be the first complaint about GF baked goods: They’re mealy.
Regardless, I made up the two texturally different types with my GF adaptation magic and, low and behold, the flaky one was the winner. Well, as flaky as we’ll achieve being gluten-free. The mealy one turned out to be only slightly mealy, but was more like shortbread with egg yolk. (Maybe we will revisit that later.)
While looking at produce for the filling, I was struck at how beautiful leeks look this time of year. Leeks have a great, mild flavor that is slightly sweet with a light, almost chive-like character. So a leek and goat cheese quiche sounded like the perfect filling for my new pie crust as they are a great flavor pairing.
Keep it simple when making the quiche. I don’t recommend soft goat for this recipe – too much water and not enough flavor. Go for something that you can grate, with more character to it. While shopping, ask a cheesemonger for samples of different types of a semi-hard to hard goat cheese. You will be amazed how many different kinds there are. Pick your favorite and don’t worry about the strength of the flavor; the goat cheese and the leeks will be the stars of the quiche no matter what.
For the gluten-free pie crust:
- 2/3 cups (105 grams) brown rice flour
- 1/3 cup (60 grams) sweet rice flour
- 1/3 cup (55 grams) millet flour
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- ½ cup (100 grams) shortening (like Crisco)
- 2 large eggs, whites only, cold
For the quiche:
- 1 leek
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 1 ½ cups (120 grams/4 ounces) grated goat cheese*
- 4 eggs, large
- ¾ cup (175 grams) whole goat milk*
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Pinch of ground white pepper
- Pinch of ground nutmeg
For the gluten-free pie crust:
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine the brown rice flour, sweet rice flour, millet flour, salt, and sugar. Put the shortening into the food processer bowl, fitted with the blade attachment. Add in the mixed dry ingredients. Pulse until incorporated. (It will look mealy.) With the processor running, slowly pour in the cold egg whites. Stop immediately when it looks like uniform dough. Turn out the dough onto a sheet of parchment or wax paper. Place another sheet on top. Using a rolling pin, roll out into an even ¼-inch thickness. (The less you handle it, the flakier it will be.) Place in the refrigerator, as is, for at least one hour.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Remove top sheet from the pie dough. Carefully flip into your pie pan, exposed side down. Remove the other sheet. Carefully press into the bottom and the corners, pressing up the wall. Trim off the excess around the edges. (To give it a fancy edge, pinch, using the thumb and forefinger of one hand with your other forefinger between those two. It takes practice, but it is very pretty especially if you’re using a plain pie tin/pan.) If there are any gaps in the dough, just carefully patch up with excess dough. “Dock” or poke the bottom with a fork, to evenly distribute the dough to keep the crust flat and prevent it from rising. Prebake for 10-12 minutes until just barely lightly golden. Place on cooling rack and allow to cool, bringing it to room temperature before putting in filling. (Keep the oven on to bake the quiche.)
For the quiche:
The most tender and flavorful part of the leek is the white stalk. Since that part that was in the ground, it can be very sandy. Make sure to rinse it well. Trim the leek: Cut it length wise, then rinse, well. Cut into thin strips. Cook in a sauté pan with a teaspoon of vegetable oil (for a little flavor) over medium-low heat until they become soft and semi-translucent. Allow to cool.
To assemble, evenly sprinkle the sautéed leeks and the grated goat cheese into the cooled pie crust. In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, milk, salt, white pepper, and nutmeg. Pour the egg-milk mixture into the pie, covering the cheese and leeks completely and evenly. Carefully place the pie on a lined baking pan and place in the center of the oven. Bake at 375degrees until the filling is set, turning as needed for even cooking, until it is a light, golden brown color on top, about 40-45 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to rest for at least 10 minutes before cutting (or it will not hold shape).
Asparagus, Leek, and Goat Cheese Quiche (lowcarb, gluten-free)
Asparagus and leeks pair beautifully as a flavor combination in this dish. An easy grain-free and gluten-free crust makes the perfect vessel for this low-carb and keto-friendly quiche filled with veggies and studded with creamy goat cheese. Easy but elegant, the perfect weekend breakfast or brunch for guests.
March makes me hopeful. Hopeful for warmer weather and the return of life to the Midwest. My lawn might look like a war zone (owning a Great Dane will do that), but I heard birds chirping yesterday and saw the beginning of tiny buds on my lilac bushes. March also means that spring vegetables will start making an appearance in the supermarket. My favorite: asparagus.
I’ve been meaning to grow my own. We eat so much asparagus that it seems only sensible. Maybe this is the year that I will actually remember to plant it in the fall. Until then, I’m scanning the produce aisle for the arrival of local asparagus. Once I find it, Asparagus, Leek, and Goat Cheese Quiche is on the menu for breakfast.
I love this combination of flavors. Spring asparagus is sweet and tender, which pairs beautifully with the subtle flavor of the leek. Goat cheese adds creaminess and tang. These three items just play off of one another harmoniously. While this would make a good frittata, which you could absolutely do, it is even better served in a grain-free flaky almond and coconut flour crust.
The crust requires minimal effort to assemble the only tedious part is pressing it into the pie pan. Which, let me encourage you, needs a bit of attention (see the note in Tips, Tricks, and Take-aways before attempting this). Pre-cook the crust for about 10 minutes. Since there is no egg, you do not need to do much more than that amount of time in the oven. Pour the filling on top, and in about 20 minutes, you’ll have a beautiful quiche that can easily be displayed on the table for guests to cut their own piece. Or, eat it out of the pie pan. Sometimes I do that. Don’t tell. Should you go that route, I’ll keep your secret. Enjoy!
Leeks in Quiche
Besides loads of sautéed mushrooms, a pile of sliced leeks punctuate the creamy interior. I adore leeks, mild members of the onion family. Here’s the 101 on how to prepare them. Leeks look like oversized scallions or green onions, long and cylindrical. The bulbs are white, and then fairly quickly the white goes to light green, then very dark green at the tops. The white and the light green are the part you want to use for cooking.
Save the tops for making vegetable stock (make sure to wash them thoroughly leeks can be very dirty and they grow by pushing themselves up through the ground. Which is how many vegetables grow, but the layers in leeks tend to trap dirt, especially in the top parts.
This Leek, Mushroom and Goat Cheese Quiche is lightened up with a lot of vegetables, and perfect for a light lunch or dinner. Let’s bring back the quiche!
In the Spring when spring onions are plentiful use those instead of the leeks. And really, whatever mushrooms you want to use are just fine – plain inexpensive buttons or creminis, or a wonderful mix of wild mushrooms – all of these work.
And a refrigerated pie crust makes it very easy to prepare and get into the oven in short order. Serve it up with a salad and you have a perfect light lunch or dinner.
And you may also have the need for a mini quiche recipe…do consider Bacon, Leek Mushroom and Cheese Mini Quiches.
Please, check out the crimp on this crust…that’s the handiwork of my friend Mandy Maxwell, who helps me out in the kitchen. What a crimper, right? She’s quite a gal.
You can also make this in a quiche pan, or course, which has a removable bottom. A quiche pan also has a fluted side so all of have to do is gently press the pie crust into the side of the pan, and after it is cooked and cooled a bit, you can pop it out of he side and have a lovely delicately etched edge to your quiche, no Mandy required.
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Leek and Goat Cheese Tart
Outside of France, quiche may have had its heyday in the 1960s and s (along with other retro fare like ambrosia and fondue). But to me — and many others — quiche is always in style. What’s not to love about the combination of tender butter crust and fluffy, eggy filling folded with cheese and savory ingredients like vegetables and bacon? This vegetarian leek and goat cheese tart is my current favorite.
How to Make an Outstanding Tart Shell for the Quiche Filling
A great quiche begins with a great crust. There are several important notes to making an excellent tart shell for the quiche: 1) get the butter right, 2) chill the dough, 3) dock it, 4) use pie weights.
First, the technique of adding the butter differs from a pie dough. I like my pie dough super flaky. To achieve this, I only make my pie dough by hand, working the butter into the flour just until it resembles large peas. The larger pieces of butter create lots of steam, which in turn creates flakes.
A tart shell for quiche is different. Here, I want the butter to be more finely crumbled into the flour. This better coats the flour and keeps the finished crust from becoming soggy. If you have a food processor, I give you permission to make your tart dough in it. But not pie dough.
Second, you 100% must chill the dough. But here’s a shortcut. Some recipes call for something like this: Roll the dough flat, chill, then roll again, shape the dough into the tart shell, chill again, bake. Unnecessary.
Save yourself a step and roll the dough to 1/8″ thick, drape and shape it into the tart shell, chill, bake. In other words, skip that first roll and chill and go directly to the “second” chill. As long as you chill your dough for at least two hours, it will be just fine.
Why Do We Chill the Tart Dough?
Chilling the dough allows the gluten to fully relax. Gluten is an elastic protein found in flour and some other grains. Working the dough makes those elastic strands tighten. If you bake dough that has not rested, it will shrink. Fully-rested dough will stay right in place.
Another important tip: Dock the pie dough with a fork before baking. This allows small amounts of steam to escape from the bottom, preventing air bubbles. If an air bubble forms, you can always pierce it while still hot or baking.
Finally, you will pre-bake the pie shell using pie weights. This helps keep the shape of the tart shell, and gets the crust nice and crisp.
The Leek and Goat Cheese Tart Filling
Quiche is endlessly adaptable. Here, I am using simple leeks and goat cheese, a lovely combination of two mild, yet equally tasty flavors that pair perfectly. But you could always substitute other vegetables or other cheese as you like. The custard makes a good generic base.
Cook the leeks over medium heat, along with the water still clinging to the leeks. You want them to be fully cooked through and soft, but not brown. Leeks will brown easily, so keep the heat gentle, stir often, and add a little splash of water to the pan if you start to get a hot spot.
I like a soft, fresh goat cheese. Aged goat cheeses, such as those with a rind, tend to taste too strong and rich, and overpower the flavor of the leeks.
You may not use all of the quiche custard base, depending on the depth of your tart pan or pie pan. Just fill it up enough, leaving a little less than 1/4″ of space at the top.
The leek and goat cheese tart is finished when a knife comes clean from the center, and the top looks dry and set. Cool to room temperature before eating. You can also make it in advance, refrigerate, and rewarm at 350 degrees Fahrenheit until gently warmed through. This is best at room temperature or slightly warm.
Spinach, Goat Cheese & Sun-Dried Tomato Crustless Quiche
Gluten-Free and Vegatarian, this super savory and flavor-packed crustless quiche is a must try! Super easy recipe is perfect for weekend brunch, a holiday breakfast or meal prep!
Simple, Savory & Unbelievably Delicious!
New! I added a cooking video to this recipe page so you can see how easy it is to make this Spinach, Goat Cheese & Sun-Dried Tomato Quiche!
And if you’re new to our website, there is a printable recipe on the bottom page with exact measurements and instructions.
Whether you’re thinking of weekend brunch already, planning a holiday breakfast or just want an awesome dish in the fridge to heat up for any meal, this Gluten-Free Crustless Quiche is a must try!
Packed with spinach, goat cheese and sun-dried tomatoes it is simple, savory and unbelievably delicious!
Plus, with only 6 main ingredients + spices, it’s beyond easy to make.
And it comes together quickly.
First you saute the onions and spinach in a skillet.
While they get tender and wilt, you mix together the eggs and mix.
Then you mix together the onion/ spinach mix, the egg mix and the goat cheese and spices.
Pour into a prepared pan and bake!
Pro Tip: Leave aside few pieces of spinach, onion and sun-dried tomatoes to “decorate” the top of the quiche so it looks extra pretty and festive if serving to guests.
And if you prefer, you could also bake it in a gluten-free pie shell.
Two our our favorite ready-made gluten-free pie crusts are Wholly Gluten-Free and Whole Foods.
Either way it is delicious!
Best part is that it can be entirely made ahead and heats up well.
This makes it perfect for holiday entertaining, a Christmas morning breakfast or weekly meal prep so you have something nourishing and delicious on hand and at the ready.
Hope you love it as much as we do!
Scroll down for recipe and leave a comment if you try.
Niles Pie Leek & Goat Cheese Quiche
Niles Pie Co., a worker-owned bakery in Union City, California, is up and running during shelter-at-home, filling orders for pick up and delivery. Founder Carolyn Berke shared this recipe.
4 large eggs
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup milk
Several shavings fresh nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon white pepper
2 small leeks or 1 large, white parts only (approximately 2 cups when sliced)
4 ounces good quality chèvre
Finely chopped fresh chives, tarragon and/or Italian parsley
1 pre-baked 9 or 10-inch pie shell (see recipe below)
Slice leeks lengthwise and clean thoroughly. Then slice thinly crosswise. Sauté in butter on low heat until softened. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Let cool thoroughly.
Whisk together the liquid ingredients very thoroughly and add the seasoning. Arrange the sautéed leeks in the pie shell evenly and dot with the chèvre. Sprinkle the surface with herbs and carefully pour in the filling. Bake about 45 to 50 minutes until the filling is completely set and does not jiggle when gently moved.
Niles Pie’s Sweet Pie Dough
Makes 1 double-crust pie or 2 single-crust shells
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
1 cup (2 sticks or 8 ounces) unsalted butter, very cold, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
6 to 8 tablespoons ice water
To mix by hand: Put your dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. (No, not that one, get out your really big one. So much easier.) Scatter the cold cubed butter over the dry ingredients, and lightly toss them in with your hands. Use your finger tips to squish the butter cubes, and continue tossing in. Do this until the butter is in flaky bits, and still discernible. Toss and squish. Use your fingertips, not your whole hands, so that you don’t melt the butter. You want to stop before it becomes to even and refined looking. If it looks like coarse cornmeal you’ve gone too far.
Make a well in the center and pour in the cold water. Using a rubber spatula or plastic scraper, mix the water in and toss/knead until your dough comes together in a shaggy mass. You can now use your hands to knead the dough into a smooth-ish ball. Divide in 2, and pat together into 2 pieces. For a double crust pie, make one just a little bigger than the other. Pat into neat circles, wrap in plastic or waxed paper, and refrigerate for an hour or up to overnight.
To mix in a food processor: Put flour, salt, and sugar into the processor bowl and pulse a few times to mix. Add the butter all at once and pulse about 15 times until the butter is the size of baby peas or smaller. Dump the flour butter mix into a very large mixing bowl and add the water. With one hand, use a plastic scraper to mix the dough. Do this gently but thoroughly. If you need more water, add by the tablespoon, until your dough comes together and is not crumbly. Divide dough in two pieces, one just a little bigger than the other, pat into neat circles, wrap in plastic or waxed paper and refrigerate for an hour or up to overnight.
Rolling out your dough: Remove one crust disk from the refrigerator. Let sit at room temperature for 5-10 minutes in order to soften just enough to make rolling out a bit easier. Roll out with a rolling pin on a lightly floured surface to a 12-inch circle about 1/8-inch thick. As you roll out the dough, check if the dough is sticking to the surface below. If necessary, add a few sprinkles of flour under the dough to keep the dough from sticking. Carefully place onto a 9-inch pie plate. Gently press the pie dough down so that it lines the bottom and sides of the pie plate. Use a pair of kitchen scissors to trim the dough to within 1/2 inch of the edge of the pie dish.
For a double crust pie: After following the above, add cooled filling to the pie. Roll out second disk of dough, as before. Gently place onto the top of the filling in the pie. Pinch top and bottom of dough rounds firmly together. Trim excess dough with kitchen shears, leaving a 3/4 inch overhang. Fold the edge of the top piece of dough over and under the edge of the bottom piece of dough, pressing together. Flute edges using thumb and forefinger or press with a fork. Score the top of the pie with four 2-inch long cuts, so that steam from the cooking pie can escape.
For a pre-baked shell: Follow the rolling out instructions above, then crimp the edges of the shell however you’d like. Line the shell with parchment and fill with uncooked beans, rice, or pie weights. Bake at 350° for about 15 minutes for a partially baked shell. The edges will be set, and the bottom will be set but not at all browned. For a fully baked shell (cream pies, or fillings that are fully cooked), remove the lining with the beans (carefully! It’s hot.), and return to the oven another 10 minutes until lightly browned. Cool completely before using.
- 1 (9 inch) unbaked pie crust
- 4 ounces soft goat cheese (chevre)
- 2 ½ cups coarsely chopped fresh sorrel
- 4 scallions, chopped
- 1 ½ cups milk
- 3 eggs
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon shredded Parmesan cheese, or to taste
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). Press pie crust into the bottom of a 9-inch pie pan and prick several times with a fork.
Bake in the preheated oven until golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool at least 10 minutes.
Reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
Spread goat cheese into the bottom of the cooled pie crust. Cover with sorrel and scallions.
Beat milk, eggs, and salt together using a fork in a bowl. Pour over sorrel mixture. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
Bake in the preheated oven until the top is golden brown, 35 to 40 minutes.
How to make Goat Cheese Quiche
- After you decide whether you want to make a mess with a homemade pie crust or take the easy way out using a store bought crust, you will need to press it into a greased quiche pan or pie plate. Poke the bottom of the crust with a fork to prevent the crust from bubbling up too much. Place the quiche pan on a baking sheet and bake at 350 for 15 minutes.
- If the crust shrinks down after this first stage of baking, using your hands, very carefully press the hot crust up a the edges a bit. If the crust shrinks down too much and you don&rsquot do this, your egg mixture will run over the edges of the crust.
- While the crust is baking, in a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, salt, pepper, green onion and diced leftover ham.
- Most likely your goat cheese will be pretty hard from refrigeration, so I find it easiest to microwave it for 30 seconds. This softens it and makes it much easier to spread over the par-baked crust. Spread a nice even layer over the crust, working half way up the sides of the crust. This will prevent your crust from getting soggy too quickly as it creates a barrier between the flaky crust and eggs.
- Top the soft goat cheese with the shredded Parmesan cheese and pour the egg and ham mixture on top. Very carefully move the crust into the oven, trying your best not to tip it and let the eggs run over the crust.
- Slice two Roma tomatoes into 1/4 inch thick slices. Arrange the slices around the edge of the quiche. If you aren&rsquot a big tomato fan, you can leave these off, but they add a nice bright acidity to the otherwise rich ingredients. Sometimes I like to add an additional tomato chopped up with the egg mixture for even more fresh tomato flavor.
- Bake the goat cheese quiche at 350 for 45 minutes, or until it is set. The edges will be just very lightly brown and the center will still be a little jiggly.
- Allow the quiche to rest for at least 10 minutes before serving.
Serving Ham & Goat Cheese Quiche
This cheesy ham quiche is great all on it&rsquos own for a delicious brunch or breakfast. If you want to take it to the next level, serve it with some fresh arugula tossed in just a little olive oil and a crack of sea salt. The fresh greens will be a wonderful compliment to the heavy egg, cheese and cream quiche
Leek Goat Cheese Quiche
Note: This quiche to me tastes better cold and can be made into mini quiches for easier transport.
- Gluten Free Pastry dough (see recipe below)
- 3 eggs
- ¼ cup half and half
- 1 ½ leeks, halved, rinsed and sliced (white & tender greens)
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 4 ounce goat cheese
- ¼ teaspoons cracks of black pepper
- ¼ teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoons nutmeg
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Pour the oil in a saucepan and add the leeks. Saute the leeks over medium heat until almost translucent. Set aside.
Beat eggs and then add in all remaining ingredients. Blend until just mixed together. Fill pie crust. Bake for 45 minutes and let cool for 10.
GLUTEN-FREE SAVORY PASTRY DOUGH
Adapted from Joy of Cooking
For a 9-inch single-crust pie, sift together:
- 6 tablespoons chilled lard or vegetable shortening
- 3 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
Work half of the shortening into the flour mixture lightly using the tips of your fingers until it has become the consistency of cornmeal. Add the remaining half of the shortening into the dough until it is pea-sized. Sprinkle the dough with
Blend the water gently into the dough until it just holds together you may lift the ingredients with a fork, allowing the moisture to spread. If necessary to hold the ingredients together, add:
Place dough in pie tin or pie pan, and work dough into the corners with your fingers. I also beat an egg yolk and brushed the crust with this. Place in refrigerator for 15 minutes to 30 minutes before using.
Quiche with Leeks, Goat Cheese and Fresh Herbs
We love the versatility of quiche, and this is one of our favorite versions. Filled with buttery leeks, plenty of herbs and tangy goat cheese, this makes a terrific brunch dish or a light lunch when served with a green salad. Customize this quiche as you wish by swapping in your favorite cheese or vegetables, adding ham or cooked bacon, or trying other herbs and spices.
Quiche with Leeks, Goat Cheese and Fresh Herbs
For the cream cheese dough:
- 2 cups (10 oz./315 g) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 cup (8 oz./250 g) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 1/2 lb. (250 g) cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 Tbs. unsalted butter
- 1 Tbs. olive oil
- 3 leeks, white and pale green parts, thinly sliced
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups (375 ml) whole milk
- 1/4 tsp. freshly ground nutmeg
- 1 Tbs. chopped fresh dill
- 1 Tbs. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1/2 bunch green onions, white and pale green parts thinly sliced
- 6 oz. (185 g) goat cheese, crumbled
1. To make the dough, in a food processor, combine the flour, salt and butter and process until the texture resembles coarse cornmeal, with butter pieces no larger than small peas. Add the cream cheese and pulse a few times, just until the dough comes together. Transfer the dough to a work surface and shape into a disk. Wrap well in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
2. On a well-floured work surface, roll out the dough into a 12-inch (30-cm) round and fit into a 9-inch (23-cm) pie dish. Trim the overhang to 1/2 inch (12 mm), fold the edge under itself and decoratively flute or crimp. Pierce the bottom of the crust with a fork and freeze for 30 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, preheat an oven to 400°F (200°C).
4. Bake until the edges are lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Let cool briefly on a wire rack. Reduce the oven temperature to 375°F (190°C).
5.In a sauté pan over medium heat, melt the butter with the oil. Add the leeks and 1/2 tsp. salt and stir occasionally until the leeks are tender and translucent, about 10 minutes. Let cool slightly.
6. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs until blended. Whisk in the milk, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1/4 tsp. pepper, the nutmeg, dill, parsley and green onions. Stir in the leeks and half of the cheese. Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the crust, then pour in the egg mixture.
7. Bake until the crust is golden brown and the filling is set and slightly puffed, 30 to 35 minutes, covering the edges with aluminum foil if they brown too quickly. Let cool briefly on a wire rack, then cut the quiche into wedges and serve warm. Serves 8.
For this and more than 35 ideas for sweet and savory pies check out The Pie Cookbook our all-inclusive guide to making pies by The Williams Sonoma Test Kitchen Cooks