Crispy Quinoa Patties

These simple crispy quinoa patties are so versatile. They’re a great meatless option that even meat eaters will love. Play around with your favorite vegetables and spices. Makes great leftovers!

quinoa patties on a blue plate

quinoa patties on a wood cutting board

Let me tell you a few things about these quinoa patties.

  • They are so versatile! Serve them warm over salads, serve them warm in pitas (falafel style) with creamy sauce and greens, layer them into a sandwich with avocado and cheese, or even simply drizzled with hot sauce.
  • They’re meatless. If you’re trying to limit your meat, these are a wonderfully healthy option. I also love my meatless black bean burgers, corn fritters, and pumpkin chili too!
  • Great make ahead option. Make this entire batch of them (about 20 patties) and freeze them so you always have them handy when you’re in a pinch. Or store them in the refrigerator for the week for a quick grab ‘n go lunch of dinner. They reheat wonderfully in the microwave.
  • There are so many variations! Get creative – what’s your favorite cheese? Add it. Love broccoli or cauliflower instead of zucchini? Make the swap. Add your favorite spices like lemon pepper, cumin, dill, or smoked paprika.

The version I’m sharing today has garlic, onion, fresh grated parmesan, parsley, carrot, zucchini, salt, and lemon pepper.

No matter which variety I make, I always use the onions and garlic for their unparalleled flavor. Kerry suggested a dill/feta cheese/zucchini version. I’m going to try that one next!

2 images of quinoa patty mixture in a green bowl and shredded block of cheese on a wood board

quinoa mixture in a bowl

Like any burger, meatball, or veggie pattie recipe – you need to be careful with your ingredients. There needs to be enough “sticking power” to help the patties hold their shape. Here are a few tips to help keep the quinoa patties together:

  • Make sure you have the right balance of veggies and bread crumbs. If you’re gluten free, make sure your bread crumbs are gluten free as well. I have never had luck making these without breadcrumbs.
  • Make sure you chop your veggies nice and fine. I find pulsing them in a food processor gets them to the right size. (As well as cuts down your work!) The smaller your veggies are diced, the better they will hold the patties together.
  • If you find your mixture is too wet, add a little more cooked quinoa and/or bread crumbs. Alternatively, if you find your mixture is too dry, add a couple drops of water.

Form the mixture into about 20 patties, give or take. They will be about 2 inches in diameter. Cook on a lightly oiled skillet until crispy and brown on each side. I’ve simply used nonstick spray instead of oil before, but the nonstick spray doesn’t give the patties their beautifully crispy texture.

quinoa patties in a skillet

quinoa patties on a teal plate

Besides the cooked quinoa patties making wonderful leftovers, the uncooked quinoa mixture also keeps well for a few days. Make the mixture up, cover and store in the refrigerator until you have some time to cook the patties on the stove.

This meatless option is truly a keeper in our house. So many ways to enjoy them, fabulous leftovers, easy, quick, and a great way to use up leftover quinoa, veggies, cheese, and spices. See more recipes in my savory recipes collection!

quinoa patties on a salad

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quinoa patties on a teal plate

Crispy Quinoa Patties

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: about 20 patties
  • Category: Appetizers
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These simple crispy quinoa patties are so versatile. They’re a great meatless option that even meat eaters will love. Play around with your favorite vegetables and spices. Makes great leftovers!


Ingredients

  • 2 and 2/3 cups cooked quinoa
  • 4 large eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon lemon pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1/2 small onion, finely chopped (about 1/3 cup)
  • 1/3 cup fresh parmesan cheese, grated
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup gluten free whole grain breadcrumbs (or regular)*
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped carrot and zucchini (1/4 cup each veggie)
  • 1 Tablespoon oil, plus more as needed

Instructions

  1. Combine the quinoa, eggs, salt, and lemon pepper in a large bowl. Stir in the parsley, onion, cheese, and garlic. Stir in the bread crumbs and chopped carrot/zucchini. Let the mixture sit for a few minutes so the crumbs absorb some of the moisture.
  2. At this point, you should have a mixture you can easily form into 20 thick patties. You want the mixture moist, so the patties aren’t dry tasting. However, you want the mixture to hold together when cooking. You can add more bread crumbs to firm up the mixture, if needed. Alternatively, you can add a couple drops of water to moisten the mixture. *The uncooked quinoa mixture keeps nicely in the refrigerator for a few days. Cover tightly and cook the patties when you have time.
  3. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat, add 5-6 patties, cover, and cook for 7 to 10 minutes until the bottoms are deeply browned. Carefully flip the patties with a spatula and cook the second sides for 5 minutes, or until golden. Remove from the skillet and cool on a large plate while you cook the remaining patties. Add more oil to the skillet if needed between each batch.
  4. Serve plain or in a pita, on a salad, on a sandwich, with sliced avocado, with hot sauce on top, etc etc. There are so many ways to enjoy them!

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Cooked quinoa patties keep well in the refrigerator for 1 week or in the freezer for two months. A quick few seconds in the microwave will warm them back up to enjoy.
  2. Update (2015): I’ve successfully made these quinoa patties using 3/4 cup oat flour instead of breadcrumbs!
  3. Customize These! Use any cheese, veggies, or spices you like best. The finer the veggies are chopped/grated, the easier the patties will stick together. I always pulse them in a food processor. No matter what else I add, I always use onion and garlic because they give so much flavor.
  4. Recipe adapted from Super Natural Every Day: Well-Loved Recipes from My Natural Foods Kitchen By Heidi Swanson.

Keywords: crispy quinoa patties

75 Comments

  1. Hi Sally. 🙂 I just got done making these for lunch and they are fantastic! They stuck together in patty form really nicely as compared to other veggie burgers I have tried making before. I made 19 patties formed using two scoops from a medium cookie scoop. The cookie scoop made it quick to form the patties and easy to ensure all patties were equal in size. I enjoy many of your healthy recipes and appreciate how you have expanded your blog to include savory recipes.

  2. What do you mean by 1/2 cup finely chopped carrot and zucchini in the recipe? Do you mean half cup each of carrot and zucchini which would be 1 cup altogether, or 1/4 cup each of carrot and zucchini( 2 1/4= 1/2 c) ? thanks 🙂

    1. 1/4 cup each, so 1/2 cup total. Enjoy!

  3. I made these last night for dinner with chipotle rather than parsley. They are SOO delicious!! I’m currently enjoying them for lunch today. Thank you very much Sally, this is an amazingly simple and delicious recipe. I love it.

  4. Sally, I am new to your blog, and I have really been enjoying looking through your recipes. The Crispy Quinoa Patties are the first recipe I’ve tried, and they are AMAZING! I am on a very restricted diet for a mast cell disorder, and with just a couple of substitutions I was able to eat them without any issues. Thank you so much for a wonderful blog and an absolutely fantastic recipe!

  5. I made these this week and they were delicious but ended up being crumbly. Tended to fall apart when I turned them. Any idea what went wrong or what I need to do to fix it?

    1. Sounds like you need another binder – try to add 1 more egg. You want the mixture to be wet, that’s how you know it will stick together.

  6. I made these last night with a little BBQ sauce on top and a salad on the side. My hubby and I both LOVED them!! Blown away at how tasty they were and how nicely they held together and crisped up. We have been searching for an easy, tasty, versatile vegetarian dinner staple, and this is it!! Will be a go-to in my house for sure! Thank you!

  7. I tried these patties last night and they truned out amazing, so yummy healthy and easy to make,,,
    i have some leftover un cooked patties and they’re going to be my dinner for today.
    thank you sally for the amazing recipe

  8. What would be a good alternative to zucchini? I have carrot but no zucchini. Would bell pepper or broccoli work? 🙂

    1. I’ve done both bell pepper and broccoli instead of the carrots and zucchini. Go with whatever you like best. Broccoli and carrot would be a great combo.

  9. Oh wow! I just cooked up a batch of these – used carrots and fresh dill and some old dried up mushrooms 😀

    I’m here to tell you that THIS is delicious and is going to be one of my new comfort foods, thanks so much!!!

  10. My husband and I just started what we call ‘weekday vegetarian’, so I hunted pinterest for some good meal ideas. This one made this weeks menu! We just finished eating these for dinner. And oh my goodness, SO. GOOD! And not just good for a veggie burger. Just straight up, GOOD. All the flavors are so good with each other.
    I’m sort of foolish in that I like to alter recipes before I have even tried them. In this one we did 2 cups quinoa and 2/3 cup lentils. I guess I don’t have anything to compare it too but I imagine they may have helped hold them together because after cooking the lentils they become a little mushy/sticky (can’t think of a better way to describe them) and they may have given the patties a little more substance. We didn’t use carrots per my husband request and I ate them with avacado on top he used a wasabi dressing. Such a delightful meal! I am excited that we can freeze the patties, I think they will be our go to for packing lunches during the week since we used to make lunch meat and cheese sandwiches quite often.
    Thank you for the recipe! Excited to enjoy these all the time!

    1. Hey Gina! Thanks for reporting back! Your version sounds absolutely delicious. Love the suggestion of eating them with avocado – I’ll do that next time!

  11. FYI – I have made these TWICE now and love them more each time. I am spreading the joy of these wonderful patties. Great addition to my repertoire for meatless meals (says the omnivore)!

  12. Polly Woods says:

    These are very tasty & love the texture. Also makes a great basic recipe to follow when you want to switch it up: I used the proportions here to make some savory breakfast patties (with onion, garlic, sage, thyme, rosemary, salt & pepper….. ).

    NOTE: I’ve cut most bread out of my diet & had good results substituting brown rice flour for the bread crumbs. I’m afraid I didn’t measure, but added gradually until the quinoa hung together. Turned out great!

  13. Rachel Amanda says:

    I made these for dinner tonight and they will definitely become a regular part of our menu…because my 6 year old not only ate them but said they were her favorite part of the meal!

    I used cauliflower and yellow bell pepper instead of the carrot and zucchini, because it was what I had on hand. The flavor combo was great. And the texture – soft inside and crispy on the outside – was excellent.

  14. EatFreeRecipes says:

    Just made these the other night and the whole family adored them! Even our little munchkin who is usually the picky one;)
    Thanks so much for the great recipe!

  15. Hi Sally,

    We tried this recipe last night. Our kids loved it and so did we!! The mixture was a bit wet so we had to add more breadcrumbs but the result was excellent. I have to say that we have also tried quinoa chicken salad and creamy chicken pasta salad and both were really yummy. Thanks for sharing!

  16. Made these last night, and they were so pretty! I followed your recipe exactly with no changes or substitutions. Alas, they were quite bland. I want to add more flavor without more salt. I am thinking maybe hot sauce, but am open to other suggestions.
    Love your blog!

  17. Hi Sally, I recently discovered your blog and totally love it! I have made several of the recipes for baked goods (pumpkin bread, banana bread, cranberry bread, trufles) and my entire family loves them all!
    Tonight, I am going to try making the quinoa-vegetable cakes but I have a question – do you mix the vegetables into the quinoa mixture when they are raw or can you cook them first? I am wondering if cooking the vegetables first will (1) bring more flavor, and (2) bring less moisture to the mixture. I;d love your thoughts about this!
    Thanks again for all of the great recipes!
    Amy.

    1. Hey Amy! I do not cook the veggies ahead of time. You certainly can, though! Hope you enjoy.

  18. Hi Sally!
    These are amazing! I made them exactly as you wrote and found the flavor to be perfect. Thanks for providing some savory recipes as well.
    Thanks!
    Jaime

  19. What an incredible recipe. With the snow storm, I had to tailor the recipe to what I had on hand. I used Lemon Zest, Black Pepper, Cilantro and Red Onion in place of the Lemon Pepper, Parsley, Carrot and Zucchini. It was an unbelievable combination and wanted to share this ingredient combo, too!

  20. These are really tasty! I was looking for a recipe to use up the quinoa I had and I’m so glad I tried this recipe. I was concerned about how these would turn out without cheese since I can’t eat that. Not to worry – they are very tasty and hold together just fine. I added an extra quarter cup of bread crumbs (gluten free) to keep them together. My husband even liked them (he’s not a big fan of quinoa). I put them on top of a bed of kale w sliced avocado and a delicious vinaigrette. YUM!

  21. Hi, these are so tasty! My kids (picky eaters) loved them! I replaced the bread crumbs (husband cannot eat wheat nor anything declared “gluten free”) with oats which I put in the food processor. I served the patties with homemade hummus, refried beans and farmers cheese with fresh chives. Delicious! Thank you!

  22. Great recipe! Added some feta cheese and a little bit of mint – yummy! We couldn’t stop eating because it was so delicious. Thanks for sharing your recipes. Lots of love from Germany

  23. When you suggested the dill and feta in the post may I ask did you make them and what did you substitute for these new ingredients and what was the measurements
      Thank you 

    1. Yes! I usually do 2 teaspoons dill and 1/3 cup feta. I take out the parmesan, the lemon pepper, and 1 Tbsp parsley.

  24. Lovely recipe! Just wondering – what could I substitute for breadcrumbs? I am hoping to make these for my baby and not keen on using commercial bread. Would a particular flour work?

    1. I’ve used oat flour and it works perfectly!

  25. I’m new to healthy eating & I never thought I would find fantastic healthy recipes from my favorite dessert blog but oh my goodness! These were so so good! 

  26. Like so many of your recipes, I find myself going back to this one again and again! So simple to make and absolutely delicious and versatile. I am aways thinking of different ways to spin this recipe. I recently tried a version with black beans, cheddar cheese, cilantro, and red peppers which was delicious. Thank you for your great recipes and inspiring me to try something new!

  27. Made these tonight and they were so yummy! I had fresh basil in the house so I added some in and put the patties on a bed of arugula with avocado and homemade basalmic dressing. Will definitely be making these again soon! 

  28. We make a batch of these at least twice a month and eat them for breakfast.  I was wondering if you have ever tried baking them in the oven.  I know a little bit of olive oil is good for your diet, but I’d prefer not to fry them.  

    1. I have, yes! Obviously much more crisp cooked with oil in the skillet, but still great. About 25 mins at 350.

  29. I have made these great quinoa patties several times. Today I added some kale. I like to put a poached egg on top. Great breakfast. 

  30. I made this and must not have put enough bread in because the patties didn’t stick together well but they were still delicious!! I think I will just fry the rest as crumbles.

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