3 Cheese Quinoa Cakes

Can you go wrong with anything that is titled “3 cheese”? You definitely can’t go wrong with these quinoa cakes, I know that. They are dense, cheesy, crispy, and super filling and hearty. Eat them as a side, or pile a few on your plate for a whole meal. They are seriously delicious!

This recipe was actually originally supposed to just be three cheese quinoa…just a bowl of cheesy quinoa. Which was yummy, but I was wanting more texture, and the quinoa was already sticking together from the cheese, so we rolled with it, added some bread crumbs and an egg, and fried ’em up!

You can eat these guys plain Jane, but you can also doctor them up. A few yummy suggestions:

  1. Slide a runny fried egg on top. I’ve had this for breakfast a few times this week, aaaand it was awesome.
  2. Top it with a pile of arugula with lemon dressing. Kind of like this white pizza topped with arugula salad – it would have the same delicious contrast of rich and cheesy vs. tangy and fresh.
  3. Maybe add a nice smear of this green chili mayo…because that green chili mayo needs to go on anything and everything forever. Mayo on top of quinoa isn’t exactly traditional, but…I’m just sayin’…I wouldn’t be mad about it.

If you are going the plain Jane route with these (which I also chose several times), at the very least you should top these babies with a squeeze of lemon juice. And some red pepper flakes if you like some heat. I also like to throw on some fresh basil, but if you don’t have that in your fridge, don’t worry about it.

The three cheeses I used in this quinoa are parmesan, gouda, and white cheddar. I personally think this trio is BOMB, but if you want to switch it up, you do you girl. You do you. You can even go rogue and only add one kind of cheese, which is also fine. The important thing is the amount you add. As long as you end up with two cups of cheese, you can do whatever you want – get crazy.

Or use the three I used. Whatevs.

I really love cooking with quinoa because there are SO many different things you can do with it. You can eat it just as it is, you can use it in salad, you can make fried rice with it, add it to meatloaf or meatballs as a filler, or do things like this and make yummy, cheesy, crispy cakes out of it 😍. Quinoa for the win!

So I mentioned a few posts ago that I was starting Ford on some reflux medicine because his pediatrician thought it sounded like we had some reflux issues goin’ on. So we started him on it several days ago, and he does seem to be doing better. Definitely less fussy, eating better, not spitting up as much.

However…his little sleep regression is still going HARD. He’s doing a little better at night, but during the day, nap time is roughhhhh, friends. R-O-U-G-H. Pretty much fifteen to twenty minutes of crying as I’m rocking him, walking him around, bouncing him, swaying him, etc. before he finally gives in and goes to sleep. But lately he wakes up after like thirty minutes unless I get really lucky and can get him back to sleep. And, if you have a three month old, you know that thirty minute naps ain’t gon cut it!

So usually we end up with a little fussy overtired baby if he stacks a couple of thirty minute naps back to back with no long ones. Yikes. So last night I was researching different thing and ended up buying this “Magic Sleep Suit” thing…it looks ABSOLUTELY absurd, not to mention looks like he will be ten thousand degrees! If you don’t know what this is, you gotta pull up google and search “magic sleep suit” and LOL for hours at these little puffy, astronaut looking babies.

Anyway, the idea is that it allows them to not be swaddled (since a lot of time starting at three months they fight their swaddle) but still weighs down their limbs a little so when they get their little startle reflex while sleeping it doesn’t wake them up. That’s the idea anyway…we will see how it goes. It gets here on Sunday.

I’m not getting my hopes up, but longer naps and maaayyybbee the ability for him to nap on his own without being held would be aaammmaaaayyy-zing. I’ll letcha know how it works!

These quinoa cakes are 6 smart points each!


3 Cheese Quinoa Cakes

  • Author:
  • Prep Time: 25 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 16 servings


  • 2 cups uncooked quinoa
  • 4 cups chicken stock (or veggie stock)
  • 2/3 cup parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 2/3 cup gouda cheese, shredded
  • 2/3 cup white cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 lemon, juiced (plus extra for squeezing over top at the end)
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup half and half
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • Red pepper flakes, optional garnish


  1. Cook your quinoa according to package instructions
  2. When done, add to a large bowl and add the three cheeses, lemon, garlic powder, and half and half. Stir to combine and season with salt and pepper
  3. Let this cool a bit and then stir in your egg and breadcrumbs (you don’t want the heat to cook the egg)
  4. When ready to cook, form your quinoa cakes (each one should be 1/3 cup) and brown the quinoa cakes in batches in a large skillet over medium high heat. For every 4 quinoa cakes, use 1 tablespoon of olive oil in your pan. Once both sides of the quinoa cakes are browned, transfer them to a baking sheet.
  5. When all the quinoa cakes are browned and on the baking sheet, place in a 375 degree oven and bake for 15 minutes.
  6. Top each cake with a squeeze of lemon juice and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes if you want a bit of heat. Basil is another optional topping.


You can eat these plain with just the lemon juice, but if you want to doctor them up a bit, they are super yummy with a runny fried egg over top. They would also be tasty with a small pile of arugula that is tossed in a simple lemon vinaigrette!


  • Serving Size: 1 quinoa cake
  • Calories: 309
  • Sugar: 2 g
  • Sodium: 537 mg
  • Fat: 18 g
  • Carbohydrates: 18 g
  • Fiber: 2 g
  • Protein: 17 g
  • Cholesterol: 56 mg

If you make this or any of my other recipes, be sure to Instagram it and hashtag #thegarlicdiaries!

In the mood for more quinoa recipes? Check these out:

Super Simple Coconut Lime Quinoa

Spicy Shrimp Bowls with Parmesan Quinoa and Garlic Kale

Quinoa Mac and Cheese

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