Quinoa Patty with a garnish of avocado. Photo by Emiliano O’Flaherty-Vazquez.


Apparently, quinoa is a pseudo-grain. Like a beet.

With that obligatorily wiki’d fact out of the way, let’s talk about what we can do with quinoa apart from gush about how amazing it is for you and how if you only tried it, all the world’s problems would be solved.

I think we should fry it.

Or rather, other people think you should fry it, and I’m easily influenced by other people. Here’s the rub. Quinoa is really healthy, really cheap, and you can buy it in bulk (one of the only cheap things at Whole Foods). Also, remember, frying. You know a food is great when it can be a cereal, salad, or burger with minimal alterations. With an astronomically high protein content and complete lack of gluten, there’s really no reason to not try quinoa at least once.

This is a slightly adapted recipe taken from Heidi Swanson’s “Super Natural Every Day,” a book that may be unsustainable for everyday use in terms of financial expenditure. However, like I said earlier, these quinoa patties are cheap. Mrs. Swanson kindly threw us students a bone. A pseudo-grain burger bone.

My girlfriend Emily and I made these over the weekend with the intent to have some to save as an in-between-lecture snack, but we ate them well before Monday rolled around.

This makes 12 patties, but it’s easy to scale it up or down.



2 1/2 cups cooked quinoa.

4 eggs, beaten.

1/2 teaspoon salt.

1/3 cup finely chopped chives.

1 onion, finely chopped (put it in the freezer for 20 mins before chopping, you’ll cry less).

1/3 cup grated parmesan or gruyere.

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped.

1 cup bread crumbs (make a piece of toast, dry it out, crumble it up. Don’t buy bread crumbs).

Water (in case you need to alter the moisture of the mixture).

1 tbsp olive oil or butter.


Cooking the Quinoa.

Place 2 1/2  cups of quinoa in a saucepan with 3 1/4 cups of water and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil, decrease the heat, and simmer for about 25 minutes. Test it, make sure it’s tender.


Making the Patties.

Combine the cooked quinoa, eggs and salt in a bowl. Stir in chives, onion, cheese and garlic (Note: This stuff is pretty optional. We sautéed the onions and garlic instead of putting them in raw. Or you could leave them out. Feel free to experiment). 

Add bread crumbs, and let the mixture sit for a minute so the bread crumbs can soak up the moisture a bit.

Heat a tablespoon of olive oil or butter on a skillet/frying pan. Form the mixture into small patties and place them on the griddle. Cook until browned on the bottom, about 7-10 minutes. Flip with a spatula, and brown the other side. Enjoy.

The great part about this recipe is that you can save the mixture in the fridge for a few days, or you can cook them all and save the cooked patties in the fridge for about the same amount of time.

We placed a few patties on a bed of mixed salad greens, and then put a fried egg on top of that. One of the only meals I’ve ever made that I felt could really work for any meal of the day.

Enjoy! Patty with fried egg atop. Photo by Emiliano O’Flaherty-Vazquez.


Recipe credit given to Heidi Swanson, innovator of Andean foodstuffs and author of Super Natural Every Day.