Italian Quinoa Bites

Oh Italian Quinoa Bites…

Italian Quinoa Bites - Fork & Beans

How I love thee…

Italian Quinoa Bites - Fork & Beans

What fun little appetizer bites these are! You might wanna make them for dinner, however. You won’t be able to get yourself to stop eating them. I know that everyone says that but this time it’s serious. Crunchy on the outside with a warm quinoa center that melts into your mouth. Dip them into marinara sauce and you are in your own little Italian heaven. A breadcrumb-covered, marinara-dipping heaven.

Italian Quinoa Bites - Fork & Beans

Italian Quinoa Bites
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 12 Quinoa Bites
For the Quinoa Bites:
  • ½ c. dried quinoa, cooked with 1 c. water
  • 2 Tbsp. Cara's All-Purpose Blend
  • 1 Tbsp. flaxseed meal + 2 Tb water, let sit for 5-7 min
  • 1 Tbsp. sundried tomatoes (in oil), diced
  • 1 Tbsp. nondairy cheese of choice (optional)
  • 4 fresh basil leaves, chopped finely
  • 1 tsp. nondairy milk
Bread Coating:
  • 1 c. Rice Chex (or other gluten free crunchy cereal)
  • ½ tsp. basil
  • ½ tsp. oregano
  • ½ tsp. thyme
  1. Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. In a shallow bowl, combine the bread coating ingredients together until well-mixed. In a medium bowl, mix together all of the quinoa bites ingredients. Form into balls with hands and coat with bread crumb mix.
  3. Place into skillet and cook on all sides until golden brown. Allow to drain on a paper towel-lined plate and sprinkle salt to season immediately. Serve with your favorite marinara sauce.




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  1. These look delicious! I’m always trying to get my parents to include more vegan/vegetarian meals in their diet, and I think this one will definitely be in my next pitch!

  2. okay, these are flipping amazing!! I made them over the weekend for a birthday dinner party I was hosting and they were beyond a hit. I have multiple people tell me they were the best appetizer they’d ever had! they’re crunchy and flavorful and you cannot believe they’re Quinoa! i used Trader Joes jarred Bruschetta for the dipping sauce (put it in the Magic Bullet to smooth it out) and it was the BEST accompaniment to these. I will be making these a lot! THANK YOU!

  3. I AM SO EXCITED TO TRY THESE! any info on the calorie count of the bites and sauce? Thank you :)

  4. Hi Cara, I love quinoa… I can wait to try these. Keep up the good work. Pay No attention to negative energy. Thank you for sharing.

    • Aww man, thank you SO MUCH for the super sweet love over here!! I try my best to let negativity to roll right off and see the best in others and then a comment like yours comes along solidifying that. Your kindness speaks MORE than any type of finger pointing. Much love, Vee!

  5. Could these be prepared in advance and frozen? Or stored in fridge?

  6. Do you think you could bake these? They look so good, but I can never get the pan-fry thing right.

    • You can bake quinoa bites. I make them all the time and they are great. Bake at 350 for approx 15 – 17 minutes. And instead of forming little balls, you can scoop them into mini-muffin cups to bake.

  7. I’m not from the US but from Europe.. what does the amount Tb mean..? If I google it only comes up with digital/computer sizes..

  8. All of the “fake” cheeses have casein in them. That is a milk protein that has been shown to increase the rate of ancer growth. Can anyone name me a brand without casein because I am seriously CRAVING cheese!

  9. I have a seed AND nut sensitivity. Recommendations as to what I could use in lieu of flaxseed?

  10. @ Ruth, i hope you read this!

    For cheese idk, but milk; make your own.
    Oatmilk is super easy & superfun & supercheap to make. You can vary with the sweetners, like vanilla, maple syrup etc.

    I use 80 grams of oats (the kind you use to make a healthy porridge in the morning) on 800 mililiter of water. You can keep it in the fridge overnight to give it a good soak & blend it in the morning or use it right after blending. Filter it or not, cheesecloth & coffeefilters are handy for that.
    Loads of ways to do it, search online for more recipes, it’s super easy & CHEAP!

  11. Such a great way to get more quinoa into the diet!! Definitely trying these soon <3

  12. Hi, I’m new to the gluten, egg and dairy free world, but I have the nut free challenge on top of that! As well as assorted veggie and fruit allergies too. I mean, who’s allergic to bananas? MY KIDS! Ugh. Anyways, We cannot do soy, and corn causes mild reactions but can be rotated.
    Anywho, non-dairy cheese and non dairy milk, can I get that soy free and nut free?

    • Ruth, I’m also kind of new; my son has multiple allergies too. I know there’s a lot of non-dairy cheese but it has soy. I guess some might exist out there that isn’t soy or nut based, but I haven’t seen it. I just leave out the “cheese”.
      We use coconut milk – even though we have nut and peanut allergies, it’s fine for us. You might make sure it’s not an allergy for you; I’m not clear on if it’s a NUT or not! But it’s good for cereal, cooking, smoothies, everything we’ve tried so far has been good. There’s also rice milk but I personally don’t like it. Good luck!

  13. I love quinoa, but I am not vegan so I made them with milk, cheese, flour, and the cereal. They were great, thanks!

  14. Absolutely YUM! :) Another home run, Cara. xo

  15. Amazing. I made these last night and we loved them! Thank you, thank you.

  16. I used Erewhon Crispy Brown Rice cereal. It’s GF and non-GMO and organic. Worked very well.

    • Perfect! So helpful Kellie, thank you :)

      • I was making these last night for the first time when I left my comment and wanted to follow-up with a couple modifications.

        I used an egg in lieu of the flaxseed meal. Lest anyone get their panties in a bunch, it came from Henrietta, my neighbor’s chicken, who is one of a beloved flock of pampered, happy, pet chickens living it up in the suburbs.

        My spice cabinet is something of a mess so I grabbed the first bottle that looked acceptable: Penzey’s Italian Dressing Base.

        The Bites were served with a Sneaky “Caesar” Salad and the meal was promptly devoured by everyone.

        Conclusion: these things are RIDICULOUSLY good. They almost taste like a fried mozzarella stick, but so much better. Make them and eat them now, they’re that good.

        Once again, Ms. Cara, I have to thank you. I’ve yet to use a single recipe from your site that hasn’t turned out well. Never ever leave the interwebs, okay?

  17. Nicole Davis says:

    I definitely need to make these. :-)

  18. These are so stunning! I used to live Arrancini balls in my “former” non-vegan life, and these look like the perfect way to satisfy that craving now! Adding the ingredients to my grocery list now…

  19. I made these for me and my carnivorous son, who LOVED them! I snuck in faux pepperoni slices (he has NOT complained) instead of the sundried tomatoes and added regular dairy (sorry!) smoked bacon cheddar cheese. We’re not completely on the other side, but your recipes have helped me feel better, eat healthier and lose weight. 😀 Thank you so much.

    • Why would you use dairy when the recipe tastes great without it and is not cruel to animals in any way?

      WATCH: “Farm To Fridge” – only 11 minutes. Dairy causes cancer and many health risks. Please realize the meat and dairy industry is horrifically cruel. The gentle farm animals are tortured daily from the day they are born. Male chicks ground alive, as one example in the egg industry. Every animal feels fear and pain. We don’t eat dogs or cats in this country, so why do we eat farm animals or unhealthy bloody pussy mammary secretions like dairy? Watch! and witness the suffering caused with every purchase of animal flesh or dairy.

      • I just played that video, Amber. I listened to it but refused to watch the majority of it–I just couldn’t. Thank you for the link!

        • You’re welcome. Eye opening, heh? Every purchase of meat or dairy products pays for this torture to continue. It’s horrifying. Here’s one specifically for the Dairy industry. Barbaric. Switch to dairy-free plant based like Almond milk, Soy or Coconut milk and vegan cheeses. Search to learn how to make very simple and fast cashew nut based cheeses.

          9 min. new Mercy For Animals undercover video for largest NY Dairy farm.

          • Oh my god! Absolutely disgusting!! It really bothers me the torture that they put these animals through, that are absolutely unnessary! Makes me want to become a Vegetarian instantly.I could only watch 15 seconds of the video. This will bother me for days.

          • Hi Amber – This certainly is a horrible video to look at. What’s even more disturbing though is that this the “cruelty” beyond the “standard practices” of dairy. Those make me sadder than anything because it’s what the industry (and consumers) chose to accept as part of “business”. I’m speaking of the de-horning, tail-docking, artificial insemination (rape)… And worst of all the stealing of the baby calves. I can’t imagine how difficult it must be for these new mothers to have their babies taken from them. So sad… All so “unweaned” humans can have the milk instead.

            Colleen Patrick Goudreau has an excellent wrap up of the vile practices in the dairy industry:

  20. These were amazing! Thank you!!

  21. Colleen says:

    Is there another option instead of Rice Chex since they are GMO?

  22. do you think these could be baked instead of fried.

  23. I think I’d like to move in with you! These looks absolutely amazing.

  24. These look awesome! Can’t wait to pick up some Rice Chex and make these.

  25. I could totally gobble the whole platter!

  26. These look dingdang awesome!

  27. These look so amazing Cara!!

  28. Perfect small snack – this sounds fantastic!

  29. Anne Heffernan says:

    These look very tasty, but they call for flour. Can cornstarch be substituted?

    • It’s supposed to say gluten free flour, sorry about that!

      • Oh–duh! I guess I should have figured that out. Mental note: Less coffee and more sleep!
        Thank you so much for what looks like a yummy recipe! I can’t wait to try it. :)

  30. I’ll take ten, please. Thank you.

  31. Is there an alternative to Rice Chex? They are GMO and I’d like to try something different. What about puffed rice? That’s the only rice cereal that I can find that’s organic. Will I have the same consistency?

  32. I think I love you. These are lovely!


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