These vegetarian Broccoli Quinoa Cakes can be made in 30 minutes flat & are a delicious healthy meal that your whole family will love! Video. See 20+ Fresh Yummy Broccoli Recipes or our 20 Best Quinoa Recipes!

broccoli quinoa cakes with vegan cilantro crema drizzled over top, served in bowl with green salad and red cabbage.

Do not try to save the world or do anything grandiose. Instead, create a clearing in the dense forest of your life and wait there patiently, until the song that is your life falls into your own cupped hands and you recognize and greet it. Only then, will you know how to give yourself to this world so worthy of rescue.

Martha Postlewaite

Here’s an easy healthy recipe for Broccoli Cakes that are made with simple ingredients you probably have on hand. It’s a quick and healthy nutritious meal that really satisfies! Filling yet light, I love these best served with a generous side of salad or simple sauteed greens.

If you would like to add a flavorful sauce, the possibilities are endless here and I’ll list a variety of options in the recipe notes. Here I’ve served them with this Vegan Cilantro Crema that I had from leftover tacos.

Also, I intentionally left the seasonings pretty basic here, to make them easy and accessible—and I know you will find ways to jazz these up to your liking!

Why You’ll Love This

  1. Easy, 30-minute recipe. Made in 30 minutes flat for quick lunches or dinners.
  2. Healthy and vegetarian. Quinoa is an energizing superfood and broccoli is full of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants!
  3. So versatile! Jazz these up with your favorite spices, and serve with greens, as a burger, in a wrap, or on top of a bowl.
  4. Family friendly! A freezer-friendly meal with veggies that kids will love.

Ingredients

  • Broccoli: Fresh broccoli florets are preferred, however you could use frozen broccoli if it’s all you have.
  • Quinoa: 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa or 1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa.
  • Scallion and fresh herbs: Basil, dill, Italian parsley, or cilantro. Use what you have!
  • Egg: Essential for binding the cakes together.
  • Garlic: Use a garlic clove or 1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic.
  • Almond flour: Or sub breadcrumbs (use gluten-free if needed).
  • Grated cheese: Cheddar cheese, jack, mozzarella, or vegan cheese (you could add parmesan cheese in addition to any of these).
  • Spices: This recipe just calls for salt and pepper, but feel free to jazz the cakes up however you like with spices like onion or garlic powder or chili flakes.
  • Oil: For searing. Use olive oil or whatever you prefer.

How to Make Broccoli Quinoa Cakes

Step 1: Cook quinoa. Bring rinsed quinoa and 1 cup water to boil in a small pot. Cover and lower heat to simmer 10-12 minutes until tender and water is gone. Turn off heat and cool 5 minutes, covered.

uncooked quinoa and water in small saucepan to cook.

Step 2: Steam broccoli. While quinoa cooks, steam broccoli until fork tender, being careful not to overcook. Drain, cool, and pat dry.

fresh broccoli florets in saucepan with lid over top steaming on stovetop.

Step 3: Combine and pulse. Place broccoli, scallions, herbs, cooked quinoa, egg, salt, pepper, garlic, and cheese into a food processor and pulse repeatedly until finely ground. Pulse in the almond flour.

ingredients for broccoli cakes in food processor.

Step 4: Form patties. The mixture should slightly sticky and easily form a patty. If it seems too wet, add a tablespoon almond flour at a time until manageable. With damp hands, form 4 large patties, pressing them together. 

Tip: You shouldn’t need to coat these in flour or breadcrumbs, but if they feel very wet then feel free too. Use gluten-free breadcrumbs if needed.

broccoli quinoa cake batter in bowl with spoon.

Step 5: Sear. Heat oil in a cast iron skillet or frying pan over medium heat. Carefully place broccoli fritters in the skillet, lowering heat to medium-low or low. Resist the temptation to fiddle with them! As they form a golden crust, they will naturally release from the pan. Flip after about 5 minutes.

broccoli quinoa cakes formed into patties on cast iron skillet, frying.

Pan-sear the other side until slightly puffed in the center (indicating the egg is cooked through), lowering heat more if need be.

Tip: You can also finish cooking these through in 350F oven after pan-searing if they are getting too dark on the stovetop.

broccoli quinoa cakes frying on cast iron skillet with top side already seared.

Step 6: Serve. Serve with a slaw, side salad, or sauteed greens. Top with a flavorful sauce if you like!

stack of broccoli quinoa cakes with one sideways, showing seared sides and crisp quinoa edges, on white serving dish.

How to Serve Broccoli Quinoa Cakes

Serve with a side dish of greens or a salad with sauce drizzled on top, or serve for breakfast with Greek yogurt or sour cream.

Storage & Reheating

These Broccoli Quinoa Cakes are perfect for making ahead of time to refrigerate or freeze for later when you need a quick meal!

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. You can store in the freezer for up to 3 months.

To reheat, place on a baking sheet and bake in the oven at 375F for about 6-8 minutes until warm. You can also place them in the toaster oven.

FAQs

Why are my Broccoli Quinoa Cakes not sticking together?

When steaming the broccoli, be careful not to overcook and make sure to pat dry thoroughly. This ensures that the cakes stick together! The quinoa should be dry and not watery as well.

What can I use instead of quinoa?

You can substitute 1 1/2 cups cooked short-grain brown rice for the quinoa in this recipe.

Health Benefits of Broccoli Quinoa Cakes

Creating delicious vegetarian dishes like Broccoli Quinoa Cakes is not just about pleasing the palate, but it’s also about nourishing the body with essential nutrients. Broccoli and quinoa, the main ingredients of these cakes, bring a powerhouse of benefits to your table.

  • Broccoli: Packed with vitamin C and K, contains good amount of folate, potassium, and iron, and is high in fiber to aid digestion and maintain low blood sugar. Antioxidants, like sulforaphane, can help reduce oxidative stress and lower the risk of chronic disease.
  • Quinoa: Contains all nine essential amino acids, making it a complete protein that builds and repairs tissues. Rich in fiber for digestive health, with a low glycemic index, having less impact on blood sugar levels. Quinoa is also high in magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, and folate.

When brought together in a tasty cake form, broccoli and quinoa offer a balanced meal with complex carbohydrates, protein, and essential nutrients, keeping you satiated and energized! Pair with even more vegetables with a side salad!

crispy broccoli quinoa cakes in serving dish with side salad and cabbage.

Let us know what you think of these Broccoli Cakes. I’ve made several batches this week and all have quickly disappeared. Always a good sign. 😉

Have a lovely weekend.

Sylvia

More recipes you may like!

Broccoli Quinoa Cakes! |30-sec video

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These Broccoli Quinoa Cakes can be made in 30 minutes & are a delicious healthy meal that your whole family will love!

Broccoli Cakes

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.4 from 107 reviews
  • Author: Sylvia Fountaine
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 10
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 patties 1x
  • Category: main, vegetarain
  • Method: stove top
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

These vegetarian Broccoli Quinoa Cakes can be made in 30 minutes & are a delicious healthy meal that your whole family will love!


Ingredients

Units Scale
  1. 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa (or sub 1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa)
  2. 45 cups fresh broccoli florets (8 ounces)
  3. 1 scallion, diced
  4. 1/4 cup chopped herbs- basil, dill, Italian parsley, or cilantro (use what you have)
  5. 1 egg
  6. 1 teaspoon salt
  7. 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  8. 1 garlic clove, finely minced (or 1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic)
  9. 1/4 cup almond flour (or use bread crumbs), more as needed
  10. 1/2 cup grated cheese (cheddar, jack, mozzarella or vegan cheese)
  11. 23 tablespoons oil for searing.

Instructions

  • Cook Quinoa: Rinse quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer. Drain. Bring quinoa and 1 cup water to boil in a very small pot, cover, lower heat to low and simmer 10-12 minutes until tender and all the water is gone. Turn off heat, let stand 5 minutes covered.
  • Steam broccoli: While cooking the quinoa, steam the broccoli until tender, being careful not to overcook. Drain well, let cool, and pat dry. (It is imperative that broccoli is not overcooked and is patted dry in order for cakes to stick together.)
  • Combine and Pulse: Place broccoli, scallions, herbs, cooked quinoa, egg, salt, pepper, garlic, and cheese into a food processor and pulse repeatedly until finely ground. Pulse in the almond flour, mixing in well. The mixture should easily mound on a spoon and just be slightly sticky, easily forming a patty. If the mixture seems very wet, continue adding almond flour a tablespoon at a time until manageable.  With damp hands, Form 4 large patties, pressing them together. You shouldn’t need to coat these in flour or breadcrumbs- but if they feel very wet, feel free to.
  • Sear: Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Carefully place patties in the skillet, lowering heat to medium-low or low — resisting the temptation to move or fiddle with them. As they form the deep golden crust, they will naturally release themselves from the pan, and not stick- making flipping so much easier.  (I like to use a thin metal spatula here. Rubber spatulas have thicker edges, much harder to get under delicate things.) Flip when golden and releasing, about 5 minutes.  Pan-sear the other side until slightly puffed in the center (indicating the egg is cooked through) lowering heat more if need be. You can also finish cooking these through in 350F oven after pan-searing if they are getting too dark on the stovetop.
  • SERVE: At this point, you could refrigerate if making ahead, and reheat down the road. Or keep in a warm oven until serving. Serve with a slaw, side salad or sauteed greens. Top with a flavorful sauce if you like (see options in notes).

Notes

Feel free to sub 1 1/2 cups cooked short-grain brown rice for the quinoa.

Making sure the steamed broccoli is as dry as possible (pat it dry) will allow you to use less flour or bread crumbs. The first time I made this, I did not pat dry the broccoli, and it needed 1/2 cup almond flour. The second time, I patted the broccoli dry, and only needed 1/4 cup flour, if that.

Make sure the quinoa is dry and not watery.

Pick a sauce to serve these! 

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 Broccoli Cake
  • Calories: 255
  • Sugar: 2.6 g
  • Sodium: 743.5 mg
  • Fat: 11 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.5 g
  • Carbohydrates: 23.5 g
  • Fiber: 5.1 g
  • Protein: 13.2 g
  • Cholesterol: 43.5 mg

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Comments

  1. Which herbs should I be adding? Is it better to add all of the ones written in the recipe or just one/two are ok? And if so which herb(s) is best to add??

      1. Tried it with basil. This was easy to make for a non-cook like me and was delicious! It was a great dish to make for our family christmas dinner. Thank you!

  2. Great recipe. Easy – we do them on our Blackstone griddle outside and have also baked at 425 for about 45 min. Great with low fat sour cream and a sprinkling of shredded cheddar too.

  3. Great recipe! I’ve made I many times now, and it always turns out well. The combination of flavours with the vegan cilantro sauce is just perfect.

    The messiest and most time consuming part of this recipe for me was the pan frying, so I’ve taken to baking the patties instead. I put olive oil on a sheet of parchment paper, then dump on the mix and smooth it with an oiled spatula. Bake at 400-425 for around an hour, or when edges have gone a bit crispy (still tweaking that part). Cut into squares when cooked.

    My husband and I both like the taste just as well.






  4. Love this recipe. It’s easy, and delicious. The batter is a bit sticky when forming into Pattie’s, but wow, the flavor! I have added to the regular rotation. Thanks.






  5. This recipe is deliciuos. I used a flax egg instead of a chicken egg (I also thought about using an aquafaba egg as a replacement). Your recipes are easy for me to convert to vegan but it would be helpful for vegan dabblers trying new ideas.






  6. These were soooooo tasty! I was a bit worried by the reviewers who seemed to have a hard time with them, but they were simple to make and super delicious, really satisfying and moreish.

    Had them with your chipotle mayo & Asian slaw. Beautiful dinner! I miss them already!






  7. Forget this recipe. Too fussy. Followed it to a T even microwaved the broccoli with a minuscule amount of water & patted it dry. Cooked quinoa in advance and it was dry. Used double+ the amount of almond flour and decided to try making pancakes – didn’t work. So disappointed because the batter tastes good and all my Ings are organic. My husband just said make muffins. Ha! We cook all the time, always trying new recipes and this never happens. And I always read all the reviews prior to making anything.






    1. Shoot Cynthia-not sure what could have happened here, but it sounds like the dry quinoa could have been the culprit. It should not be dry in order for the cakes to bind- maybe a loose lid while cooking, let out too much moisture? I make this all the time and find it works well. Sorry, you had a bad experience with this one, I do know how frustrating it can be.

  8. Excellent! Added some panko bread crumbs above and beyond the almond flour. I made them ahead and refrigerated them for a few hours before searing. I think the chilling helped them to maintain their shape in the pan. Had no problem with them sticking or turning them. Served with chipotle Mayo.






    1. You can, but they can be quite tricky to stay together- the cheese helps here too.

  9. I think I solved for the ‘wetness’ problem. I just cleaned broccoli and put it in the microwave for 4 minutes under a covered dish. Steamed itself with no extra juice. I used Feta cheese (which is also drier) and had no need for bread crumbs or other padding. Served with a lemon and butter sauce (reduced lemon juice with a little butter to smooth it out). Perfect.






  10. I really liked the quinoa cakes. Thanks so much.
    Is it possible to make it without Egg and Cheese? Can we replace either of the items with anything else?

    Thanks 🙂

    1. Hi Pomy- I want to say yes, but it is a little tricky to do, so I took that option off because people were having problems with it. I have tried this with a flax egg and no cheese. It is much more crumbly but did work. You would have to experiment!

  11. This recipe is delicious and I’ve altered it a few times to make it smaller but it’s important for people to know that this makes WAY more than 4 patties! More like 12-15. I follow it by doing 1/4 of the recipe (but keep the full egg and add oat flour) and I end up with 4 patties, just an important thing to note because it takes so much longer to make 15 than 4.






  12. This is a delicious, easy recipe but please help me understand what I’m doing wrong. I’ve followed this to the letter a few times. Each time (also happens with other veg/legume burgers) it falls apart and I end up with a heap that doesn’t bind and looks more like a loose pile. I’ve tried it on the grill and in the oven and with different types of flour. I thought since this recipe had egg that would make the difference. It didn’t. Recipe pictures always look perfect but I can’t get mine to work. Thanks for any advice






    1. Are you using a food processor and able to get the grains of quinoa to break apart?

        1. The trick to getting them it stick together is- a few things: using white quinoa, cooking the grains a little longer, so they are quite plump, soft and grains break apart. Somtimes you may need to add a bit more water to get them to this point, allowing the water to be fully absorbed. You don’t want watery quinoa, or have the broccoli be watery. Hopefully this helps Ana. 🙂

  13. These might be the worst thing I’ve ever tried.. Even my boyfriend who is not picky at all don’t want to eat them. I’m seriously doubting these reviews are real.. I’m really upset that I wasted my money and time on food I might have to throw out.






    1. Oh dear, sorry, and not sure what happened here Grace. Can you be more specific about what happened or what went wrong? Did you alter anything in the recipe?

  14. Maybe I missed something in the instructions, but the recipe never mentions when to add the 1/4cup of herbs…
    Are those meant to be added when the scallion is added?

    1. Oops! yes, sorry about that and updated the recipe Marissa! Thanks for letting me know!

  15. Do you know if you can use more of the broccoli than the florets? Will using stem and/or leaves affect its consistency?

  16. I absolutely loved this recipe. The flavor was great and I made a chipotle mayo sauce to go on top. I started out with only 1/4 cup of almond flour but then just scooped more and more in until I liked the consistency. They were a bit sticky to work with but I just flour-ed my hands up a bit to handle them. I think next time, I will make the patties a bit smaller. I found that they cooked better and more thorough when they were smaller. 10/10 would make again and would recommend.






  17. Super easy and delicious.. I’m not one to measure exactly but these held together very well and I followed the advice not to fiddle until it was time to flip.

    I used half a red onion instead as that’s what I had handy.






  18. I don’t know what happened but these did not keep their shape while cooking. They looked kind of ok going into the pan but just broke apart on flipping/ while cooking.

    The bits do taste delicious, so I really wish this had worked.






  19. So good!!!
    We added half and shallot and split the cheese half cheddar half parm.
    SO good. Excited to make them again!
    Thanks for sharing






  20. Hi Sylvia’
    Those were pretty darn good. I made broccoli cakes tonight. I followed the recipe but the patties turned out awfully wet. I added a half a cup of einkorn flour and that helped a bit. They cooked up better than I expected, though they were pretty soft inside, like an underdone crab cake. I increased the heat a bit to medium plus a bit, and cooked them another four minutes turning the cakes every minute. The flavor was great, but they needed to be a bit crisper. Probably too much moisture as you cautioned against with the broccoli. I will definitely make these again. The flavor is really good. Thank you.






    1. Yes they can be a little tricky getting the consistency right. Dry the broccoli as much as possible. I’ve had the best luck with the almond flour, or bread crumbs. Haven’t tried regular flour or einkorn, for fear they would get gummy inside? Did you notice that?

  21. I love these! I genuinely can’t understand those who say it’s taken over 2 hours!?!

    I am notoriously slow in the kitchen but find them quick to make. I also loathe cooking, but I found these tasty, easy and something new to make. All my kids, including those who think broccoli is a crime and cheese is vile, all like these. I vary the recipe with different veg that I might have in the fridge and also add more spice like chili and paprika. Really delicious and easy. Thank you so much! I’ve also tried a couple of your other recipes (Bombay wraps and cottage pie, they’ve also give down very well) again, thank you.






    1. I think some have tried without cheese, but they tend to crumble a bit.

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