Pan-Fried Quinoa Cakes
Photo: Gentl & Hyers
Diane Morgan, author of the new cookbook Roots, mixes antioxidant-rich sweet potatoes and vitamin-packed kale with quinoa (a powerhouse grain) to form satisfyingly crispy patties.

Makes 14 (3") cakes.


  • 1/2 pound kale, large stems removed and leaves finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 3/4 pound sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4" dice
  • 2 cups (12 ounces) quinoa, rinsed and well-drained
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tbsp. minced fresh dill
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 4 large eggs, beaten
  • Olive oil for frying
Note: You can serve this dish with a quick, creamy sauce: Mix Greek-style yogurt with chopped dill, lemon juice, and salt to taste.


Active time: 30 minutes
Total time: 50 minutes

In a large pot, bring 4 cups water to a boil. Add kale and salt. Cook 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon, scoop kale into a large bowl, reserving cooking water. When kale is cool enough to handle, squeeze out excess water; set kale aside.

Bring reserved water back to a boil and add sweet potatoes. Simmer until crisp- tender, about 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, scoop sweet potatoes into a bowl; set sweet potatoes aside and reserve cooking water.

Measure out 3 cups cooking water, discarding the rest, and pour it back into the pot. Bring water back to a boil, add quinoa, and stir. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover pot, and simmer until water is absorbed, about 12 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside, covered, 10 minutes.

Add quinoa to bowl of kale and toss to combine. Gently mix in reserved sweet potatoes, onion, Parmesan, dill, and cayenne. Set aside to cool 10 minutes. Add eggs and mix to combine.

Set out a large, rimmed baking sheet. Using a 1/2-cup measure, scoop quinoa mixture, press firmly to level the top, then turn cup over on baking sheet. Repeat to form 14 patties total. (At this point, the cakes can be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated up to 1 day.)

In a large skillet, heat 2 Tbsp. olive oil over medium heat. Working in batches, cook 4 to 6 patties at a time until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Carefully flip the cakes and brown on the other side, about 4 minutes longer. Add more oil, as needed, to cook additional batches. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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