Ahhh; quinoa.  How I love thee.

I love your soft, fluffy texture.

I love cooking up a batch on Sunday night and picking on your leftovers with my little fingers before tossing it into salads, soups and desserts for the week ahead.

(p.s. I’ve got a TON of amazing Quinoa recipes in my NEW Cookbook Eating Clean: The 21-Day Plan to Detox, Fight Inflammation, and Reset Your Body).

I love how every time I cook you up, you remind me of a cozy family dinner when I was a kid.  After being on lockdown at the dinner table with Brussels sprouts and a crock pot meal – quinoa never looked so good or tasted so good, for that matter.

Sigh. I love you quinoa.  And so do my clients- they can’t get enough lately.

Actually they’ve been eating so much of it that they asked me for some other ways to prepare it.

Well, have no fear Amie is here.

And wait until you see how cute these little bites are that I’ve created.

If you, too love this darling qunioa seed then I know you’ll love this recipe with tiny flecks of basil, onion and chives.  It’s the perfect touch that makes this recipe the best I’ve had in a long, long time.

There’s just something special about it that I can’t put my finger on….

Maybe because it’s a fun lil’ finger food that you’ll love to dip right into a fresh tomato sauce.

Or maybe it’s just because I love quinoa.

One bite of these and you’ll be batting your eyelashes while smiling ear to ear.  And you’ll probably wanna make ’em again next week…because they’re a bit too good to be true.

I added dairy-free cheese to this recipe but you can use regular cheese if you prefer.  The amount of cherry tomatoes depends on their ripeness. Right now, if your tomatoes are as ruby red n’ juicy and sweet as mine- you probably only need about 7-8 of those little guys.  But you’ll have to be the judge!

I used regular muffin tins to make this recipe an entree but you are welcome to use mini muffin tins if you’d like to create bite sized appetizers as they’d be awfully cute for a summer BBQ, wouldn’t they?

There’s nothing better, folks, than the smell of savory quinoa bites baking in the oven.  Well, I take that back. The only better thing is actually eating these bites.


Perfect for Memorial Day Cookouts.

Just don’t forget your sunglasses and sunscreen.

Crispy Quinoa Bites
Serves: 24
Gluten-Free and Vegetarian
Author: Amie Valpone
Recipe type: Entree


Quinoa Bites

  • 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1/2 cup uncooked black rice
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup Vidalia onions finely chopped
  • 1 cup dairy-free vegan shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup grape tomatoes diced
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 2 chives finely chopped, for garnish
  • 2 cups homemade tomato sauce for serving

Sun Dried-Tomato Sauce

  • 2 yellow bell peppers diced and seeded
  • 1 cup chicken or vegetable broth plus more if needed for a thinner sauce
  • 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1 large heirloom tomato diced
  • 1 shallot diced
  • 1 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh basil
  • 1 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 Medjool date pitted and finely diced
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • Large pinch chili powder
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • pinch ground paprika
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


  1. For the Quinoa Bites:
  2. Cook quinoa and rice according to package directions. Prepare muffin pan with nonstick baking spray.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  4. In a large bowl, combine cooked quinoa and rice with remaining ingredients, except chives and pasta sauce; mix well to combine.
  5. Transfer quinoa and rice mixture to prepared muffin pan. Using a tablespoon, fill each muffin cup to the top, then using a spatula, press down on the mixture to create a flat surface.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Meanwhile, make the tomato sauce (below). Remove from oven; set aside to cool for 15 minutes. Using a teaspoon, gently remove rice and quinoa snacks from the muffin cups.
  7. Transfer to a serving platter; serve with a sprinkle of fresh chives and a side of tomato sauce for dipping.
  8. For the Sun-Dried Tomato Sauce:
  9. In a large pot over medium heat, combine all sauce ingredients and cook until all veggies are very tender, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a food processor and puree until smooth. Return to the pot, heat until warm throughout and serve with the warm quinoa bites.
Nutrition Facts
Crispy Quinoa Bites
Amount Per Serving
Calories 93 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Fat 3g5%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Cholesterol 13mg4%
Sodium 93mg4%
Potassium 188mg5%
Carbohydrates 13g4%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 295IU6%
Vitamin C 22.4mg27%
Calcium 26mg3%
Iron 1.3mg7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


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  1. This looks so fantastic! My two year old son has developed a gluten sensitivity recently and I’m looking for traveling snacks for our upcoming 7 hour plane ride. Are these intended to be eaten warm or would they do well (and taste delicious) sitting in a cooler for the trip?

  2. 5 stars
    The pics look AAHHHHmazing! Quinoa is delicious. I`ll definitely try these. Great for breakfast on the go… Just freeze, and then defrost in the morning. Crispy quinoa bites and a good cup pf coffee… Sounds like heaven. I`m pinning your recipe!! 🙂

  3. Thanks for this wonderful recipe. Can i just use a flax egg and omit the vegan mozzarella cheese? Do you think the bites will still hold together? Thanks

  4. This look amazing. Can they be frozen to eat at a later date? Also should they be served warm or cold. Can’t wait to make them. Thanks for posting.

  5. How did you get 24 muffin even partially filled?? Did you double the recipe? I didn’t even get 12 filled to the top before pressing down. Mine are in the oven now and I can’t wait to take the first bite!

  6. 5 stars
    I made this recipe tonight! I used non-vegan cheese instead, and also made 12 larger ‘muffins’ as that was the size of pan I had. They turned out FANTASTIC! I am a vegetarian student, on a tight budget (both time and money) and this was really a great meal to make.
    Thank you so much for sharing, so glad I stumbled across your blog while googling “baking with quinoa”

  7. I am going on a bike ride with a group of people and I have been trying to find a light and healthy side dish. I am going to try this dish. It is for college kids so wish me luck!!!

  8. Just made these and they are fabulous! The only problem I had is they fell apart taking them out of the tins? Should I add another egg next time or let them cool longer?

    1. Thanks Jessica; you can try 2 eggs or use more baking spray perhaps before you add them to the muffin tins! Letting them cool longer is a great idea, as well.

  9. 5 stars
    I just made these today and they are delicious! I made some substitutions/additions to suit my likes, but that’s what’s great about this recipe.
    I didn’t use any rice, but did add zucchini, red pepper and cayenne pepper instead of chili.

  10. 1 star
    I’m going to try making it in a pan, I’ll let you know how it turns out. Here’s hoping!
    Thanks for the idea!

  11. Sounds great, but my question is for you think I could make it in a baking pan? Either metal or Pyrex I mean. TIA, Shelley

  12. I might be blind but where is the nutritional facts for it? Looking specifically for fat, carbs, fibre and protein. Thanks

    1. Aleisha,
      I don’t have the nutritional facts for this recipe. I didn’t start doing nutritional information until this Fall. You can plug in the information online and get the nutrition facts. Thanks and enjoy!

  13. 5 stars
    Absolutely fabulous recipe, Amie; well done! I didn’t have black rice in the pantry, so I used wild rice. Got raves from the family!