Food Facts: Southwest Quinoa Cakes

The Morning Show

Jane Valentine, registered dietitian with Christie Clinic, joins the Morning Show for this week’s Food Facts and is making a healthy quinoa cake recipe with a salsa topping.

This is a healthy quinoa cake recipe is packed with protein from the black beans, eggs, cottage cheese and quinoa.  You can serve the quinoa cakes with a mouthwatering and incredibly easy blender salsa; if you don’t like the heat, leave out the chipotle pepper. 

Quinoa is a protein packed grain and is also a good source of iron, magnesium, vitamin E, potassium, and fiber. It looks a bit like couscous and is as versatile as rice, but quinoa has a richer, nuttier flavor than either of them.

Calories 363

Fat 17

Sodium 656

Carbohydrates 35 plus 7 gm fiber

Protein 19

Ingredients 6 servings

2 cups water

1 cup quinoa, preferably red quinoa

4 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 cup canned black beans, rinsed

¾ cup reduced-fat cottage cheese

¼ cup sliced scallions

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

2sp cumin

2tsp chili powder

1tsp oregano

1 clove minced garlic

¼ teaspoon salt, plus a pinch, divided

1 cup shredded pepper Jack cheese

1 14-ounce can fire-roasted diced tomatoes

1 clove garlic

1 small chipotle pepper in adobo sauce (see Tip)

¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro


Preheat oven to 375°F. Coat a 12-cup nonstick muffin tin with cooking spray.

Bring water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Stir in quinoa. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook until the grains are tender and reveal their spiraled germ, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool for about 10 minutes.

Add eggs, beans, cottage cheese, scallions, flour, baking powder and ¼ teaspoon salt to the quinoa and stir until well combined.

Place cupcake liners in each muffin slot.

Divide the mixture among the muffin cups (about ¼ cup each). Top each quinoa cake with about 1 tablespoon cheese.

Bake the cakes until puffed and a little brown on top, about 20 minutes. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes. Gently loosen and remove with a paring knife.

Meanwhile, place tomatoes, garlic, chipotle pepper and a pinch of salt in a blender and puree until smooth. Transfer to a small bowl and stir in cilantro.

Serve the cakes with the salsa

Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate the salsa (Step 5) for up to 3 days; bring to room temperature before serving.

Chipotle chile peppers in adobo sauce are smoked jalapeños packed in a flavorful, spicy sauce. Look for the small cans with Mexican foods at large supermarkets. Once opened, they’ll keep for up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator or 6 months in the freezer.

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