Easy Baked Polenta Cups
Comforting and delicious, these Easy Baked Polenta Cups feature a thick layer of polenta mounded with rich cheese, chopped vegetables and diced meats. With endless topping choices, this customizable recipe makes a perfect dinner bar meal.
- 3 cups water
- 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 cup yellow cornmeal
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons fresh basil chopped
- 1 large garlic clove minced or pressed
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 cup crumbled flavorful cheese like goat or bleu
- small or diced vegetables like cherry tomatoes, squash, corn, shallots, olives, artichoke hearts, roasted red peppers, etc.
- chopped meats like prosciutto, salami, or cooked chicken, sausage, or bacon, etc.
- fresh basil for garnish
Preheat oven to 400°F. Brush six 8-ounce ramekins lightly with olive oil. Set aside.
Combine water, cornmeal, and salt in large saucepan over medium-high heat. Whisk constantly until the mixture begins to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, continuing to whisk until the polenta is very thick and pulls away from sides of pan, about 3 minutes. Off heat, mix in Parmesan cheese, basil, garlic, and olive oil.
Assembly and Baking
Transfer the cooked polenta to prepared ramekins with an ice cream scoop. Spread the mixture evenly to the edges of each cup with the back of a lightly-oiled spoon.
Top the polenta with two tablespoons of the mozzarella cheese. Add a tablespoon of goat or bleu cheese. Layer vegetables and meat over the cheese. Sprinkle an additional tablespoon cheese (any kind, or a combination) over the top.
Bake the prepared cups until the cheese is melted and bubbling, about 20 to 25 minutes.
Let the cups cool on a rack for about 10 to 15 minutes before serving. Garnish with fresh basil, if desired.