I’ve been intrigued by the chocolate quinoa cakes I’ve seen recently on Pinterest. I mean, adding a sprinkle of quinoa to dark chocolate doesn’t exactly sound delicious – even if it DOES sound healthy.
Not to mention that the cakes are gluten-free; (which is not typically a marker for deliciousness – don’t worry my #GF friends, I come around at the end of this post!)
So I just had to experiment with a recipe that replaced flour with cooked quinoa – but in baby steps. Instead of going straight to chocolate, I thought the nuttiness of quinoa would deliciously complement brown sugar and cinnamon in what might turn out to be a leaden cake. (Plus I had on my mind the Cinnamon & Sugar Improv Challenge, which is run by Kristen @ Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker.)
The results were shocking: A light, tender-crumbed cake that was super-duper moist and completely delicious. I will never knock a gluten-free cake again! The brown sugar and cinnamon with the blueberries I threw in at the suggestion of my 5-year-old did produce a yummy cake! While we did decipher tiny bits of quinoa (despite pureeing the quinoa for a good 5 minutes,) they were not unlike chewing on tiny soft tapioca pearls.
The kids and I enjoyed the cake as a snack with a glass of iced tea…and we plan to have it again for breakfast tomorrow with a cup of milk and fruit. The recipe contains four eggs and 2 cups of quinoa, thus I estimate it has:
- Nearly 4 grams of protein per serving and about 10 grams of added sugar (Not a ton of sugar for a cake, but next time I’ll use less sugar because it was plenty sweet.)
- For comparison, a bowl of Cinnamon Toast Crunch® cereal has 1 gram of protein and 9 grams of added sugar.
Cinnamon Sugar Quinoa Snacking Cake
Perfect for a protein-packed breakfast or snack – this cake is rich in protein from quinoa and eggs. Snack happy and healthy!
- 2/3 cup quinoa – uncooked
- 1/3 cup of milk
- 4 large eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup of melted butter, cooled
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 3/4 cup of brown sugar, packed (I will try 1/2 cup next time)
- 1 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 cup fresh or frozen (unthawed) blueberries
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar + 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, mixed well
- Rinse quinoa and cook in 1 1/3 cup water according to these instructions (skip #3 toasting step)
- Cool quinoa.
- Place half of quinoa in a food processor (or blender) and add milk. Process for 2 minutes. Add remaining quinoa and 2 eggs. Process for 5 minutes until very smooth. (Continue in food processor if you have large capacity one. I didn’t so I continued with my electric mixer.)
- Pour quinoa/egg mixture in large bowl and add remaining eggs. Blend thoroughly. Add vanilla, butter, oil and mix well. In a separate bowl, mix together brown sugar, 1 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, powder, soda; add to wet ingredients and blend well.
- Pour into greased 9X13″ cake pan. Sprinkle blueberries over cake. (It’s ok if they sink into batter slightly.) Sprinkle granulated sugar/cinnamon mixture over top of cake.
- Bake in preheated 350 degree F oven for 45 minutes until toothpick inserted comes out nearly clean. Don’t overbake.
Have you ever made anything sweet with quinoa? Please share!