I finished the BeachBody detox about two weeks ago but I’m still following a blend of a vegan/vegetarian diet, and trying to stay gluten free as often as possible. In five weeks I’ve had one bite of steak and one teeny slice of chicken sausage. I’ve noticed a change in my digestive patterns and I feel great! I’m slowly reintroducing animal protein but my body is no longer craving cow. I’m also trying to find substitutes for white and wheat flour-based products. My pantry is filed with grains, almond flour, gluten-free flour. I haven’t experimented yet with the various flours. One of my favorite “new” grains is quinoa.

Quinoa has been called a superfood.  It’s as versatile as rice but has a superior protein content than most grains. It has all the essential amino acids  but it has a protein content that is superior to that of most grains, because it contains all the essential amino acids. Apparently the human body can synthesize all amino acids necessary to build proteins, EXCEPT the essential “ten.” If you’re not getting these amino acids from meat or dairy products, you must get them in grains and/or legumes. Quinoa is a one-stop shop.

Hubby was grilling some epic Angus burgers yesterday; I needed a satisfying substitute. Usually I’d just throw a Portobello burger on the grill. I made a farro salad last week that gave me the idea to try a version of arancini (Italian rice balls). When I saw some cooked quinoa in the frig, I began to wonder…

I consulted Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson and sure enough she had a recipe for quinoa patties. I used multi-colored quinoa. Her intro also references the {distant} similarity to arancini. I didn’t stray far from her recipe. The subhead called for goat cheese, but the ingredients listed Parmesan or Gruyere. I had neither since I’ve been vegan, but had some Gouda. I’ll head to the Farmers Market today to get some delish local goat cheese.

Hubby called them “smooth” and said he’d eat them in place of beef. One of his friends was over and begged to take one home to his wife – a quinoa fan who is trying to bring more grains into his diet too.

These are simply good.

quinoa pattyQuinoa Patties

slightly modified from Super Natural Every Day


  • 2 1/2 c cooked quinoa, at room temperature
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1/3 c  fresh scallions, finely chopped
  • 1 Vidalia onion, finely chopped
  • 1/3 c freshly grated Gouda
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 c Panko bread crumbs, plus more  if needed
  • Water, if needed
  • 1 tbs Devo Olive Oil Chipotle EVOO


  • Combine the quinoa, eggs, and salt in a medium bowl.
  • Stir  in scallions, onion, cheese and garlic.
  • Add bread crumbs, stir, and let  sit for a few minutes so the crumbs can absorb some of the moisture. (If it’s too dry, add a little water; if it’s too wet, add some more bread crumbs)
  • Form into 12 patties.
  • Heat oil in grill pan over medium-low heat.
  • Cook 6 patties at a time.
  • Cook for 7 to 10 minutes, until the bottoms are deeply browned. (Adjust heat if needed.)
  • Carefully flip the patties with a spatula  and cook the second sides for 7 minutes, or until golden.
  • Remove from the skillet and cool on a wire rack while you cook the remaining patties.

Serve as desired. I topped with hummus, and a red pepper and artichoke spread.