Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Quinoa Spinach Patties

Egg Topped Quinoa Patty

I found another easy gluten-free dish I really like making and eating.  I didn't have to go to the grocerty store to get any of the ingredients.  They were sitting in my pantry, refrigerator and freezer.

It all started by finding a recipe for Kale Quinoa Patties -- hmmm, sounds good. (There are quite a few recipes for Kale Quinoa Patties on the web). I tucked the recipe I liked the best away in a folder on my computer.  I kept thinking about that recipe but was waiting to go to the grocery store to get the ingredients --- kale, Parmesan cheese, chives, and garlic.  I kept putting off going to the grocery store and then I thought about substitutions that I might have on hand.

I found a box of frozen spinach in the freezer that was close to its expiration date.  I knew there were vacuumed sealed chopped frozen onions in the freezer. I had some dried chives on a spice shelf.  There was a package of Italian 5 cheese and a few tablespoons of Romano cheese in the refrigerator. I had no fresh garlic but there was a jar of minced garlic in the fridge. There were plenty of eggs in the fridge.  What else was in the recipe?  Oh, bread crumbs, which can sometimes be a problem but I found a few slices of gluten-free sourdough bread in the freezer. Took no time to get them into bread crumbs, using the food processor.

Sourdough Breadcrumbs

I started the recipe by cooking the quinoa.  I always have it on-hand because I use it to make gluten-free flour.  I cooked the quinoa in chicken broth following the direction on the Bob's Red Mill package.  It is a little more expensive to buy it from "Bob" but it is prewashed, which is absolutely necessary for quinoa.  Harvested quinoa seeds are covered with bitter-tasting saponins.  Rinsing and rubbing action will remove the soap-like covering. When I have to rinse quinoa, I use a stainless steel mesh strainer.  They can be found for good prices elsewhere, especially using a store coupon.  The metal mesh of the strainer aids in scrubbing the saponins off the quinoa.

Mixing Quinoa Mixture with the Spinach Mixture

While the quinoa is cooking, the onions, spinach and garlic can be cooked. Use as much of the box of spinach as you like.  I used the whole box becaue I like spinach. Kale, turnip greens, chard, and even, broccoli can be substituted for the spinach.  I'm going to try collards when they can be harvested late fall/early winter from the garden. I processed the sourdough bread to crumbs while the spinach (or other greens) mix is cooling.

When cooking the patties, it is important to not move the patties for the first five minutes of cooking.  The patties may fall apart if moved before the fives minutes are up.

The spinach in the quinoa is soooooo good!

Spinach Quinoa Patties


1  cups cooked quinoa, cooled
2 cups chicken broth or water
1 10oz box frozen spinach*
2 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp sea salt
½ yellow onion, diced small
½ cup any cheese you like
2 tablespoons Romano or Parmesan cheese
2 cloves garlic, minced
¾ cup finely ground GF bread crumbs
2 Tbsp olive oil plus more for frying

*Can substitute  4 cups of fresh spinach or 4 cups kale, chopped, with large vein removed

Cook the quinoa by bringing 2 cups of chicken broth or water to a boil.  Add the rinsed and drained quinoa and bring the broth to a boil again. Lower the heat to simmer, cover and cook 10-12 minutes, until the liquid is absorbed.  Turn the heat off and set aside for 5 minutes.  After five minutes, fluff the quinoa with a fork and let cool.

When the quinoa is cool, combine it with eggs, Parmesan, chives and salt in medium mixing bowl.

Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil in skillet on medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook until soft, approximately 3 minutes. Add spinach to skillet without squeezing dry and cook until the spinach is reduced and slightly tender. Let cool.

Add kale mixture to quinoa mixture, then add breadcrumbs and stir to combine.

Wipe the skillet clean and heat to medium heat. Add enough oil to coat bottom of pan.

Form patties using 1/3 cup of quinoa mixture and place patties in skillet.  Do not overcrowd.   Fry 3-4 patties at a time until golden brown on each side, approximately 5 minutes per side.  Do not move or disturb the patties before the first 5 minutes are finished. (It will help the patties from falling apart.)
Remove patties, drain on paper towel and serve.

These quinoa patties are good with ketchup or with a Roasted Pepper Sauce or Creamy Cucumber  Sauce. A creamy Avocado Relish, made with avocado, sour cream, salsa and cilantro, would be great with the patty, also, as well as a chunky vegetable marinara sauce.  I found that they are perfect served with an egg, sunny side up or over easy.  They are even a good snack, cold from the fridge. Bet you can find another great way to serve them!


"Easy Basic Quinoa Recipe." How To Cook Quinoa, Easy Quinoa Recipes, Quinoa Nutrition. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Sept. 2014.

"Healthy Kale Quinoa Patties Recipe." CherylStyle. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Sept. 2014.<>

"Learn to Cook: Quinoa." Whole Foods Market. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Sept. 2014.<>

"Roasted Red Pepper Sauce." BBC Good Food. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Sept. 2014. <>

"Saponin: Natural Steroids." Mother Earth Living. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Sept. 2014.

"The Chic Chef: Creamy Cucumber Sauce and Basic Quinoa." College Fashion. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Sept. 2014.<>

"Saponin: Natural Steroids." Mother Earth Living. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Sept. 2014.

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