It’s amazing to me that just a few years ago, quinoa was pretty much unknown to the general public, including myself. Then all of a sudden, it became all the rage and everyone was eating it. As popular as it is, there are so many people who don’t even know exactly what it is. Rather than type everything out here for you to read, you can explore this link if you are genuinely curious about quinoa: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/19/what-is-quinoa_n_7612836.html
If you don’t really care what it is, but you enjoy eating it…on to the recipe! This recipe is for Spinach and Cheddar Quinoa Cakes with Buffalo Yogurt Sauce. YUM. I usually cook these as a main dish and serve with a vegetable side dish or salad, but it would also work great as a side dish. It’s hearty and filling, warm and cheesy, and filled with fresh spinach. DON’T skip the buffalo yogurt sauce. It’s seriously delicious and really pulls the whole dish together.
Active Time: 35 minutes Total Time: 35 minutes
For the Quinoa Cakes:
¼ cup quinoa
¼ cup barley
1 cup water
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 large shallot, minced
1 large garlic clove, minced
3 cups baby spinach, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons milk (I used Silk Unsweetened Almond)
¼ cup breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons panko breadcrumbs
½ cup reduced fat grated cheddar cheese
salt & pepper
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil for pan frying
For the Buffalo Yogurt Sauce:
3 ounces room temperature reduced fat cream cheese
¼ cup plain Greek yogurt
1½-2 tablespoons buffalo sauce
Combine the quinoa and barley in a small sauce pan. Add 1 cup of water, bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce to a low simmer, cover and let cook for about 20 minutes until water is fully absorbed. Transfer quinoa and barley to a large bowl.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots, cook 1 minute then add the garlic, cook for about 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the spinach and cook for about 1-2 minutes until wilted. Add the mixture to the large bowl with the quinoa and barley.
Beat the eggs and milk together in a small bowl then add to the large bowl. Add the breadcrumbs, cheddar and salt and pepper to taste. Stir everything together until well incorporated.
Using the same skillet, add about 1 tablespoon of cooking oil of choice and heat over medium-high.
Shape the mixture into patties and cook for about 3 minutes on each side until golden brown. Transfer to a paper towel lined rack to drain. Add oil to the pan as necessary while cooking the patties. Serve warm with the dipping sauce.
Nutrition Information per serving:
Calories: 265 Fat: 13g Carbs: 25g Protein: 13g Sodium: 401mg Sugar: 2g
*Nutrition information is based on the products I used personally in this recipe. Different products may yield slightly different information.