How to make Quinoa Patties

Quinoa Patties: One of the best vegetarian meals. Can be modified for most diets and tastes!

Quinoa Patties

I’ve talked about how my husband and I are moving toward a vegetable-based diet. I loved reading the comments with your own stories! When we first started experimenting with this change two years ago, my husband was committed but skeptical. He braced himself for a long, hungry month.

I reassured him that he was in good hands. I only forgot one small detail: I actually had no clue what I was doing.

Up to this point, all of my meal planning started with a simple decision: beef, pork, or chicken? Then I would build side dishes around the meat. Take the meat out, and it was hard for me to get motivated in the dinner department. Pancakes for a month, anyone?

Thankfully, I started to experiment with different beans and grains and vegetables. It ended up being a delicious month. (I will be posting some meatless menu plans on Monday if any of you are looking for some tasty inspiration.)

Quinoa Patties: One of the best vegetarian meals. Can be modified for most diets and tastes!

In many of our favorite, vegetable-based meals, quinoa was the star of the show. Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) is an ancient whole grain that is a complete protein. At 6 grams of protein per serving, it is a filling, versatile gluten-free option for a vegetable-based meal. It can be used as a breakfast cereal, in baked goods, in salads, or as the main dish.

Quinoa Patties: One of the best vegetarian meals. Can be modified for most diets and tastes!

In the Portland area, Costco carries four pound bags of organic quinoa for $9.79  ($2.45/lb.). This price is hard to beat (Winco bulk is $3.62/lb and Fred Meyer or Trader Joe’s is $3.99/lb). I would easily spend twice that per pound on good meat.

Remember, I’m not trying to start a Vegetarian Revolution here. I’m just encouraging you to incorporate meatless meals if it works for your family, both for the variety and savings.

This recipe for quinoa patties is easily one of our new favorite main dishes. The recipe is simple and quick to create, especially if you already have cooked quinoa on hand. If you cook a big batch of quinoa ahead of time, it will keep in the refrigerator for several days or the freezer for several months.

This quinoa recipe also keeps well in the fridge or freezer for a smaller, ready-to-cook meal option. We like these served simply, with avocado slices on top.

Quinoa Patties: One of the best vegetarian meals. Can be modified for most diets and tastes!

Little Quinoa Patties

Adapted from Super Natural Every Day: Well-loved Recipes from My Natural Foods Kitchen (Amazon)
Feel free to play around with this basic recipe; the cheese and vegetables can be changed to fit your preferences.


2 1/2 c. cooked quinoa at room temperature
4 eggs, beaten
1/2 t. salt
1/3 c. finely chopped chives or green onions
1/3 c. finely chopped yellow or white onion
1/3 c. Parmesan cheese (goat or feta cheese is good, too)
2-3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 c. bread crumbs

1 T. olive oil, for cooking

  1. To cook quinoa: Combine 2 cups of well-rinsed uncooked quinoa with 3 cups of water and 1/2 t. of salt in a medium pot. Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer for 20-25 minutes, until the quinoa is tender. (This will make more than you need for this recipe. Cool and refrigerate or freeze the rest for later!)
  2. To make quinoa patties: Combine 2 1/2 cups cooked quinoa, eggs, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir in the chives, onion, cheese, and garlic. Add the bread crumbs and let the mixture sit for 5 minutes.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. When hot, shape 12 1″-thick quinoa patties. They don’t have to be perfect. I’ve found the easiest way is to scoop 1/4 cup (use a measuring cup) of the mixture into wet hands, quickly press it into small patties, and slide it into the hot oil with a spatula.
  4. Cover and cook for 4-6 minutes until the underside is golden brown, flip, and repeat until the other side is also a golden brown and the quinoa patty is firm (cooked in the middle). Serve hot or cold with your choice of toppings, if any.

Leave a comment: What is your favorite quinoa recipe? Leave a link, if possible.


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Quinoa has made a reappearance in my kitchen recently. I made this tonight and they were delicious. Even my picky eater husband devoured some. Thank you for sharing!

I made this like I would Italian meatballs with Italian seasoning instead. Served with spaghetti and Mariana. Was great!

I need some suggestions on how to easily rinse the quinoa. I don’t have a strainer that is small enough gauge to not loose all my quinoa down the drain 🙁

Personally I have a little hand screener with a handle that works, otherwise I would use the pan lid and drain it out slowly, using pot holders of course.

‘Fine mesh strainer’ is what I meant to post, but my mind went blank on the words at that moment. Sorry

I’ve made quinoa patties and love them. Quinoa is a superfood on Teacher Genotype-Blood Type A Diet and your recipe is simple and frugal-I’m going to make them up and freeze a batch. These sound delicious, too.

Do you think there is some way of making something like sausage patties with this recipe or similar.
I too am just starting to try to serve more vegetarian meals.

You’ve put this recipe out here for us before and as it turns out I finally made it a couple nights ago. (In fact I just ate a leftover patty for lunch today) Everyone in the family loved these and I’m going to post a link to this page on my facebook page. Thanks for sharing a recipe that started me in on quinoa!

Our FLNW contributor, Laurie, always substitutes an equal amount of gluten-free oats for bread crumbs in this recipe. Let us know how it works for you!

I’ve used flax meal before. It doesn’t bind quite like eggs do, but you can make it work.

For each egg, use 1 T. flax meal + 2.5 T. water, stir together & let sit for 5 minutes. Add to recipe.

These are pretty tasty. I made these with red quinoa and had one with my Scrambled egg every morning. Just a word of not cook 2 cups of quinoa (as the recipe directs) unless you want to end up with 6 cups of cooked quinoa. You only need to cook around 2/3 cup of dried quinoa to yield the 2 1/2 cups the recipe calls for.

You’re right! It does cook more than you need for this recipe. With beans & grains, I like to cook a big batch, use some, and freeze the rest for later. I’ll add that note in the recipe. Thanks!

These were so good! I was so surprised as I normally don’t eat quinoa. I used feta and added a bit of kale. Lunch for the week is ready!

Yes! I freeze them, scooped & flattened (unbaked) on a baking sheet. Once firm, transfer to a storage bag or container. Thaw flat/one layer in the fridge. Cook as directed!

I made these for the first time today. I used nutritional yeast in place of the cheese because I am dairy-free. They are amazing! So delicious- will definitely be making these again!

I found this recipe on Pinterest and came here to check it out. My daughter and I are trying to eat healthier and plan on trying this recipe out very soon. Looks simple and delicious.

We love love love quinoa patties. I add sauted spinach and onions to the already prepared quinoa and eggs and panko. I also served a poached egg on top. Yummy!

Hi!! I tried baking them instead! It works BUT they do look (and hold together) much better if you cook them on the skillet, I did not use olive oil but cooking spray. Also, I changed the 4 whole eggs for 2 whole eggs and 4 whites, had to use a little bit (about 1/4c) of quinoa flour to held the mixture together. Hope it helps 🙂

Call me lazy, but I use the rice cooker to cook the quinoa grain. A bit sticks to the bottom, but a small price to pay compared to the mess I make on the stove top. I use 1 part quinoa and 1.5 parts water.

It’s around 100 depending on the size. I make mine in 1/4 cup scoops. Use to calculate the exact calories.

I found this recipe on Pinterest and they are amazing! I usually eat them with a mild salsa for a little more of a kick. This recipe makes a lot so I usually freeze most of them and have them for dinner later in the week!

I just found this recipe on Pinterest, had all the ingredients on hand, so I whipped up a batch. I’m so glad I did … they’re delicious! I made them with feta cheese. I’m freezing the remaining patties for another day. Thanks for this great recipe! I’ll definitely will be making it often.

I would give it a shot! I made them with flax meal/water in place of the eggs once. They weren’t quite as good but held together just fine!

I used 2 whole eggs and 4 whites and had to add 1/4c of quinoa flour to held the mixture together. I guess you can make the with just whites and a bit more of quinoa flour.

I shape them, then flash freeze them in a single layer on a baking sheet before transferring to plastic storage bags. Thaw & cook! Although I’m sure you could freeze them fully cooked, as well.

been meaning to say THANK YOU for your quick reply. Loved these! trying them again tonight with goat cheese (my fave). 🙂

These sound so tasty and so simple. I will be making them for sure! As I was reading thru all the comments someone mentioned burgers. I immediately thought, “These will make delish patty melts!” Will have to form them to fit the rye bread, but that is never a problem. Thanks for a lovely recipe!

Hands down best meatless party I have ever eaten and I’ve been vegetarian for years (just now starting to add meat back into the diet). I have experimented with quinoa patties before, but this is a winner. The proportions of everything are dead-on perfect! Thank you!!!!

I am making these for family night this week,
I going to add a little flax, chia~mixed veggies, all organic, also I am using free range eggs, and gf panko to coast and sautee in olive oil!~ YUMMY!

The recipe says to top with your favorite topping.

I just got a half price pint of oikos red pepper yoghurt DIP. 25 calories for 2 T. It is sooo good. I think that a dribble artistically placed across one of these patties would be wonderful.

I made these for dinner last night and we really enjoyed them. I love that you can really play around with this recipe. I stuck to the script the first time, but next time I think I’ll try some red pepper and maybe a dash of chili powder. I had some leftovers for breakfast this morning. I think I liked it even better cold. Delicious – thanks for sharing!

Quinoa is new in our kitchen so I’m on the hunt for some good recipes and this one looks like one to try. I host a really fun party on Wednesday’s and I would love for you to come by and share this with my friends.
~Newest follower via Pintrest

Fluster Buster

Thanks, Judee! So glad you tried and loved them. They are definitely a staple in our house!

We will just love your Quinoa Patties, they look very tasty. Thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday and have a fabulous weekend.
Come Back Soon!
Miz Helen

These look and sound delish! I’m going to try them.
I’m visiting you today from Trendy Treehouse. I co-host a Linky Party Tuesday (open thru Sat) and I’d love for you to link up! I hope you get a chance to stop by, link up and leave a comment, too!
~ Megin of VMG206
Join me each Tuesday for Brag About It Link Up Party

those really look amazing. You could do so much with that patty too, dip it in yummy homemade cuccumber dip or top it with a sauce!!! Have you seen the offer for a free fathers day card from TREAT? I’ve posted the details on my blog and it really is free! No tricks :o) Just trying to pass along the offer!
Emily @ Nap-Time Creations

They are delicious! And versatile too. You can add salsa to make a Mexican version with some spice.

Aren’t they delicious!?! I just made them tonight with tri-colored quinoa, red peppers, onion, garlic and almond flour. Delish.

My 11 year-old daughter, who is not fond of quinoa or vegetarian fare, took her first bite and declared “These are amazing!” It’s a keeper recipe in our house.

Aren’t they delicious! I just made them for the first time a few weeks ago and I can’t get enough. I eat them on a bed of baby spinach with balsamic vinegar drizzled over the top. Delicious!

So, I bought some quinoa and was excited to try this…how in the world do you rinse quinoa? I tried to rinse it in my colander and it leaked out everyone. I bought one with smaller holes and it stuck to it everywhere. There has to be an easier way than what I am doing. I feel like I am wasting a ton of it in the rinsing process. Please help if you have a trick!

Hi, Amie! Sorry for the hassle! I use a fine mesh strainer, and it works perfectly. These are available in a wide variety of sizes & prices. I would find one that’s around 7″. Here’s an inexpensive one.

Pour 1 cup of dry quinoa into the strainer at a time, rinse under cold water, invert the strainer over the pot & tap it once on the side. It’s fast, easy, and you won’t waste a bit!

What would you serve with these? I want to put them on my menu plan this week, but I’m completely at a loss. Any ideas/suggestions would be awesome!

I usually serve these with roasted vegetables or a big green salad. The quinoa patties are also great with avocado slices on top. Yum! Sometimes I pile the whole thing together: salad topped with quinoa patties and avocado.

Just found your website! I am excited to find this recipe because my son is gluten free and doesn’t think it’s fair that everyone else gets to eat the “good food”. By incorporating foods like this for all of us, my son won’t feel left out, MY doctor will be thrilled that I’m actually eating something healthy, and perhaps 3 adults in this family will have our cholesterol DROP!

Thanks again!

Does this recipe work sans cheese or would it fall apart? We’re dairy-free, love quinoa & always on the look out for yummy recipes. Suggestions for making this work for us?

Cheese wouldn’t affect how much it binds. The breadcrumbs are what keeps it all together. We’re dairy free too and they will come out great.

Here is my favorite quinoa recipe–it is delicious!

Southwestern Quinoa Salad

-= Ingredients =-
1 cup quinoa ; (red or white)
2 cups water
1 15oz can black beans
12 ounces frozen or fresh corn
1 avocado, chunked
1 pint grape tomatoes ; halved
1/2 cup red onion ; diced fine (or sweet or yellow onion)
1/2 cup olive oil ; (107g)
1/3 -1/2 c cilantro ; finely minced
3 cloves garlic ; finely minced
juice ; & zest of 2 limes
1 teaspoon Kosher Salt

-= Instructions =-
Bring water to a boil, add quinoa and reduce heat to low (simmer). Cook 10 minutes, turn off heat, and let steam for another 5-10 minutes.
Combine olive oil, cilantro, garlic, lime juice and zest, and pepper. Combine vegetables and top with dressing. Stir in quinoa and add salt to taste.

I made these with feta and bread crumbs from homemade gluten free bread. They are so delicious. Will be making a ton to freeze. They were also excellent chopped up on a salad.
I find they taste like egg foo young.

I made these tonight with feta and really liked them. Two family members weren’t fans, one thought they were fine, and one (other than myself) thought they were fantastic. Thanks for the recipe! 🙂

I made these and they were delicious! They’re gluten free since they have breadcrumbs in it? I’m a vegetarian and was looking for recipes for healthy carbs/starches in my meal and this made a great side dish to my meal.

My husband made this recipe for me tonight and we are fans!!! It was so good and we have plans to tweek it a bit to make it even more to our liking. Thanks so much for the idea. It will be a new staple in our house.

I’ve been using a lot of vegetarian recipes for many years, and I love to see more people realizing they can mix things up–meatless sometimes, a great roast chicken another time. One cookbook author I heartily recommend is Jeanne Lemlin (Main-course Vegetarian Pleasures; Vegetarian Pleasures). Her recipes are excellent for convincing skeptical family members–nothing weird, very flavorful. Her books may be out of print, but try the library or a used book store. One small point: if you’ve never tried quinoa, don’t buy the giant size package first. To some people (me, and others I know), it tastes sort of metallic and grassy–not good. I wish I liked it!

You could also use cheesecloth in a strainer. Or you could also put it in a bowl and let it soak for a minute and drain as much as you can. If you think there is about 1/4 cup water left, just subtract that from the amount.

A friend of mine told me that the countries that are producing quinoa are now exporting so much, that they can’t feed their own. Does anybody know if this is true?

You read my mind! I have two 4-pound bags of frozen cook quinoa…And I had no idea what to do with it until now! I’m stoked to try the quinoa patties! I think my family will really like them. Wahoo!

I made these tonight! LOVE. Seriously! I used the cheese I had on hand (something hard that we had leftovers of from our wine and cheese couch-time date night) and I didn’t have enough garlic. The quinoa was some sort of blend with millet that a friend gave me, and I used more red onions than the other types. BUT, even with all the changes, it was spectacular. I will definitely be making it again!! I fried them in coconut oil, and anything fried in coconut oil is wonderful!! Thank you so much for the recipe!!

Here’s a chance to share my favorite quinoa recipe. Here goes: Aztec Salad
1 1/2 c uncooked quinoa
2 3/4 c. water
dash of salt
When quinoa is cooked, add 1 can corn (or frozen), 2 c black beans, 1 red or green pepper diced, 1 medium red onion diced, juice of one lime (tasty but not essential). Combine and place in a salad bowl lined with greens (greens are optional).
The dressing is really yummy. Assemble the ingredients and whirl in a blender:
4 Roma tomatoes
1 1/4 c olive oil
1/2 c red wine vinegar
1 tsp salt, 1 tsp pepper
1 tsp crushed red pepper
2 garlic cloves (or more)
2 T fresh cilantro (optional)
You can top your salad with toasted pumpkin seeds (in a cast iron skillet carefully toast 1 c. seeds in 1-2 T oil, add a bit of salt and chili powder)

I am not a vegetarian by any means, but have been enjoying at least 1 if not 2 meatless days a week. Which I just read my Belgian ancestors have been doing for years. It is exciting!! Even my husband has been really getting into it; although he wasn’t so easy to convince originally. He will be thrilled that you have posted the quinoa patty recipe as his eyes lit up when I told him about it last week. Thanks so much Emily!

We are a mostly vegetarian family and we love this recipe, too. Leftovers are great with left over roasted veggies and wrapped in a tortilla with a little more cheese! Seriously, I would pay BIG money for this wrap:)
Happy experimenting.

Either would work. I save heels and the crusts my kids don’t eat, as well as older, dry bread. I just spread it on a cookie sheet and toast them until dry in the oven, then pulse them in the food processor a few times until they are the consistency I want. I love having a container of these bread crumbs on hand & ready to go!

Thanks for the great idea! I gave up meat for Lent and while I’m fairly well versed in the kitchen, I imagine I’ll be tired of the same old quinoa here in a few weeks.
I found a great recipe for bean patties on Eating Well magazines website. Even my carnivorous hunting husband likes them. 🙂

I have some friends that are gluten-free and would love to make this for them. What do you use instead of bread crumbs to make it gluten-free?

I actually googled “quinoa patty recipe” last week after reading Emily’s post because I wanted to try it out & found this very recipe. We are G.F. & I substituted G.F. oats instead of bread crumbs. I let the mixture sit a few hours after adding the oats & then fried them up for dinner. Delicious! I just finished eating the leftover patties for breakfast this morning (I’ve been saving/hoarding the leftover patties for myself because they are SO good!)

We are gluten free and you can use any type of gluten free bread. I use a couple of heels of Udi’s bread and turn them into bread crumbs.

Cooking GF regulalry, I’ve made quinoa patties (other recipes) and instead of crumbs, some recipes ask for a bit of flour–i use a mixture that i make or rice flour instead of this–pretty flexible and I like that alot–one can use what you have on hand!

I am always looking for good vegetarian recipes. I haven’t worked with Quinoa yet but it sounds good…I will have to try it. I make some great meatless patties with brown gravy that are a big hit.

Thanks for sharing. 🙂

Sure Dee,

These are wheat germ patties but I substitute bread crumbs (way cheaper) and they turn out great!

1 1/2 C regular uncooked oatmeal
1 C wheat bread crumbs
1/4 C warm water
1 T dry yeast
1 T Soy sauce
1 t Sage (I don’t care for sage and substitute poultry seasoning)
1 pkg dry Lipton Onion Soup
1 Med onion chopped fine
1 Dash garlic powder
2 eggs (eggbeaters work fine)
1 can evaporated milk (I use 2% works great)
3/4 C ketchup

Activate the yeast in the warm water and set aside. Mix all of the ingredients adding the yeast/water mixture last.

Form the mixture into patties and fry in olive oil until lightly brown. These are good on sandwiches just like this but I usually do a casserole.

For a casserole put the patties into an oblong greased baking dish. I mix brown gravy with a can of mushroom soup and pour on top. Bake at 350 until browned around 50 minutes.

These can be made ahead of time and frozen to throw into a casserole when needed.

Thanks for the recipes. I’ve been wondering how to make them ever since I read your post last week. Any particular cookbooks or websites that got you through your meatless month?

Heidi Swanson is my hands-down favorite because her recipes are easy to adapt and super tasty.

Her cookbooks are Super Natural Every Day & Super Natural Cooking. Her blog is

Smitten Kitchen, another favorite blog, has a great veg section in her recipe index.

For books, Engine 2 Diet, Plenty, and Ancient Grains for Modern Meals are a few I’m planning to check out soon.

YUM! I can’t wait to try these! I’ve recently discovered Quinoa too as I had to cut out gluten last year and the foods I was used to eating were no longer an option. I discovered a yummy way to eat Quinoa, using leftovers from the night before. Scramble eggs your favorite way. My favorite way is to saute garlic, onion, zucchini and bell peppers, then add eggs. When the eggs are almost to the consistency that you like, add leftover Quinoa. Cook until heated through, top with parmesan cheese (or any cheese you like). Yum!

Oh, yum! I’m going to try it this weekend with the leftover quinoa sitting in my fridge right now. I bet that’s really filling – would be delicious tucked into a tortilla, too! Thanks for the tip.

Thank you so much for posting this! I’ve been struggling to find plant based recipes that my kids enjoy. PLEASE, please keep posting your successful ones!!

I have never worked with egg beaters so I can’t say for certain, but I don’t see why not. This recipe is user-friendly and open to interpretation. I think the substitution is 1/4 of a cup of egg beaters per egg, right?

If the mixture turns out too moist, you can always add in more bread crumbs to firm it up.

Thank you so much for posting the recipe. I was so excited about it when you talked about it last week because my husband and son are gluten free and I LOVE using quinoa. So, thanks!

Hi, Debra – This recipe is made GF by either using GF bread for the breadcrumbs or another GF substitution. Check out the comments for several different ideas!