Pirate Kitchen

Spicy Quinoa Bites

Quinoa Bites Chai Almonds Whiskey Sour

I had a panic attack over these quinoa bites.  Let me explain:  at the critical point of making the recipe, I thought I was out of quinoa.  Right, the main ingredient.  I had already been to the grocery store, list in hand and didn’t buy the darn quinoa because I said to myself, “you have two kinds at home to choose from!”  I then drove my satisfied self home.  To my horror, the box of red quinoa felt almost empty.  Then as I muttered to myself, pleaseohpleaseohplease, I discovered (whew!) the other package of quinoa.  One more time, let’s hear it for not having to drive to the grocery store again, “WHEW!”  Because really, is there anything more annoying than having to drive back to the grocery store (for whatever reason) when you were just there? Right.

Quinoa Bites

I amped up the original recipe by using cumin and cayenne.  I also love using the red quinoa – it makes them look sassier.  You can use whatever quinoa you have (there’s no flavor difference) and leave out the cayenne if you don’t like spicy.  For my second round, just because I’m that kind of girl, I used coconut flour instead of all purpose.  Love the stuff.

I think this calls for a cocktail party, don’t you?  I’d like to recommend the following:

Pimm’s Cup
Sunshine Cocktail
Fresh Whisky Sour
Honey Chai Roasted Almonds

My friend Tracy thought of making them sweet.  Like with dried cranberries, honey or agave, cinnamon, nutmeg, etc., etc.  Brilliant.  I wish I’d thought of it, but glad she did.  I’m off to make more…hope I have quinoa left in the cabinet, red or otherwise.

**Photo Note:  I don’t remember an Autumn where the flowers have bloomed this long and the peppers just keep going.  I’ll take it.  Also pictured in the photo are Joy the Baker’s spectacular Honey Chai Roasted Almonds and Ina Garten’s Fresh Whisky Sour. This cocktail is NOTHING like whatever memory you may have of the awful mix you ordered at the bar when you were trying to be cool and ordered your first mixed drink.  This is your grownup version – it’s sophisticated, fresh and delicious.  I added a splash of cherry juice for flavor and …”pink”ness.


Spicy Quinoa Bites

Makes 24


  • 2 Cups traditional or red quinoa, cooked
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 Cup any color or combo green, red, orange, yellow peppers, chopped
  • 2 stalks green onion/scallion both white and green, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 Cup (or more to taste) fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 Cup shredded cheddar cheese, reserve 1/2 to sprinkle on top
  • 1 Tablespoon coconut flour or 2 Tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon, cumin
  • Dash of cayenne – a little or a lot depending on how spicy you like them!
  • 1 teaspoon Salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a mini muffin tin (or two) with cooking spray.  Mix all the ingredients together.  Fill each muffin tin cup to the top.  Sprinkle the reserved cheese on top.  Bake for 15 – 20 minutes.




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