Anna Wootton

Crispy Quinoa Cakes with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

Oh these were goooood. I mean gooooood (in case you didn’t get that the first time).

The recipe came from my beloved magazine, Vegetarian Times, that comes to my mailbox every now and again (it only does 9 issues a year and I can’t quite work out the schedule. I wish it would be monthly!)

I had this recipe bookmarked for future cooking but never got around to it. It’s so easy to go back into cooking those staple meals you know and rely on, you know? So trying out something new was something I kept putting off. Also, I haven’t always had the best success with VT recipes but that could be my cooking skills. Still, I don’t think that the recipes they print are exactly foolproof.

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These, however, were. They have a ton of ingredients but are done in just four easy steps (We like quick recipes!). Also, shape them into miniature patties for a really easy party platter appetizer (double the recipe and I bet you’d get at least 30 miniatures out of it). I made some changes to the original recipe too – it called for feta (no cheese is an option for vegans) and I used goat cheese because I have it in the house, and, well, I love goat cheese.

My mom said they look like miniature sea creatures, which kind of put me off them (I can’t get the comparison of quinoa to barnacles out of my mind now) but they taste amazing because they have such a wide variety of ingredients. From sundried tomatoes and goat cheese to almonds and tahini, there are a lot of textures and flavours in one of these babies.

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This one, however, came from Kristin Uhrenholdt of The Family Dinner, a wonderful cookbook. She was featured by the magazine (congrats!) and this was one of the recipes published. So clearly, we are on a whole other level with this recipe :). What I especially loved were the recommendations that came with the recipe – easy ways to turn one recipe into multiple treats:

  • Swap out 1 cup of the quinoa with lentils and season with curry powder = you have Indian koftas (delicious – they are all I order when I go to Indian restaurants!)
  • Add in lots of chopped parsley and serve in pitas = you’ve got falafels!

This recipe is gluten-free and I have provided alternatives if you want to make it vegan as well.

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INGREDIENTS (makes 6 cakes)

Please note the ingredients below reflect my recipe, not necessarily the original. I changed a few things.

1 egg
2 tbsp flour
1 1/2 tablespoons tahini or other nut butter
2 tsp red wine vinegar
1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa
2 tbsp grated onion
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup finely grated sweet potato
1/2 10 ounce box frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1/4 cup chopped almonds (optional)
1/4 cup chopped sundried tomatoes
4 ounces crumbled goat cheese (the original recipe uses feta, so if you don’t like goat, use feta. If you’re vegan, omit)
1 tablespoons chopped cilantro (you can use dill or parsley if you are not a cilantro fan)


1. Preheat oven to 400º F. Mix together the vinegar, tahini, egg and flour in a medium-sized mixing bowl.

2. Add all other ingredients.

3. Mix well so that all cakes get a bit of everything :).

4. Form into patties and place on a baking sheet, covered in foil and sprayed with cooking oil spray.

5. Bake cakes for 25 minutes or until golden on each side. Flip once.

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Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

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INGREDIENTS (this reflects half the original recipe as it makes a lot of sauce)

3/4 cup drained roasted red peppers
1/4 cup chopped almonds
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1 tsp garlic, minced


1. Add everything to a food processor or blender; blend till smooth.

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Serve and enjoy!

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Nutritional information provided per cake if your recipe makes 6 cakes:

Nutritional information from

Nutritional information provided per serving if your sauce serves 6:

Nutritional information from


I had some quinoa left over, so I mixed up a quick quinoa salad for lunch the next day. I was out of cucumber, but that would be yum with this so add it if you have it!

INGREDIENTS (serves 1)

1/2 cup cooked quinoa
2 tbsp lemon juice
3-4 cherry tomatoes, cut small
2 green onions, chopped
1 tbsp cilantro, chopped
1/2 tsp garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste


1. Put everything into a tupperware and shake it up!

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How do you like your quinoa?