These protein-packed quinoa bites bursting with apples and sweet cinnamon are a healthy & delicious make-ahead breakfast.
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My sweet niece, Brianna (she’s 6), is still in that stage where I am her cool aunt. I kind of hope this phase carries on forever, but even if it doesn’t, I am soaking it up while it lasts! My sister wasn’t a huge quinoa fan (before I won her over with quinoa bites!), so she hadn’t made it for her kids, but since I moved back to Colorado, I brought the quinoa! Since I love quinoa so much, Brianna started getting excited about it, too (the power of being an aunt!).
I started by making it plain (cooking it in chicken broth) for her and Brianna went crazy for it! Then we made a batch of the Cheesy Zucchini Quinoa Bites for her to try and she has been begging for them in her lunches ever since. We’ve been making batches to store in the freezer so they are all ready to throw in her lunch box in the morning and she loves helping to mix them and scoop them out, too!
I told her I was going to try to create my first sweet quinoa bite and she got so excited (it’s so good to have the excitement and wonder of a 6-year-old in your life!).
Helpful Hints for These Quinoa Bites
- When I researched how to cook quinoa in almond milk, a whole bunch of sites said to cook it just like you would normally. I tried it their way and discovered two things.
- #1 – Do not cover the pot as it simmers. If you do, it will boil over again and again (and again) and it makes a huge mess.
- #2 – You need a little bit more liquid than normal or the quinoa won’t fully cook.
- Make sure to cut the apples finely. If you leave them in too big of chunks, the bites won’t stick together as well!
- Save yourself dishes – mix it all together in the same pot you cooked the quinoa in!
- Use a cookie scoop. It makes life so much easier. If you don’t have one, you should ask for one for Christmas. I use mine all the time for so many more things than just cookies!
Cook the quinoa in the almond milk. Stir in the rest of the ingredients, scoop the bites onto a silicone-lined baking sheet, and bake them! That’s it!
These are a healthy, delicious, and super easy make-ahead breakfast. You really don’t need a dipping sauce, but we just happened to have some leftover cream cheese icing from my mom’s birthday cake and, heavens to Betsy, it was so good! It transformed breakfast into a dessert!
- 2/3 cup uncooked quinoa
- 1 1/2 cup original almond milk
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 Tbs brown sugar
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 medium apple, finely diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 2 eggs
- Put uncooked quinoa and almond milk into a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Lower heat to low and simmer, keeping pot mostly (but not fully) covered for about 20 minutes, or until liquid is fully absorbed.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Stir in the remaining ingredients.
- Using a small cookie scoop, scoop bites onto a silicone-lined baking sheet.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes.
- Enjoy hot, cold, or room temperature – with or without dipping sauce!