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Quinoa Croquettes - Croquetas de Quinua


Quinoa Croquettes - Croquetas de Quinua

Quinoa Croquettes - Croquetas de Quinoa

Marian Blazes
Quinoa is a high protein grain that has been cultivated for centuries in the Andes mountain regions of South America. These quinoa croqettes are made with cooked quinoa, ham, and parmesan cheese. Crispy on the outside and soft and crumbly inside, I think of them as South American hush puppies. Croquetas de quinua make a delicious warm appetizer, especially served with creamy salsa a la huancaína or with ranchero ranch dressing.

Prep Time: 2 hours

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes


  • 1 cup quinoa (uncooked)
  • 2 cups chicken stock or water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup minced onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons butter or oil
  • 1 tablespoon aji amarillo paste or minced hot chile pepper (optional)
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup finely diced ham or crumbled bacon
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1/4 cup cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 4 eggs
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups bread crumbs
  • Vegetable oil for frying


  1. Place the quinoa in a saucepan and cover with the chicken broth. Add the bay leaf and bring broth to a boil.

  2. Cover the pot and reduce the heat to low. Simmer quinoa until the liquid is absorbed, about 10 to 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and leave the pot covered and undisturbed for 10 minutes more. Remove the bay leaf.

  3. Melt the butter in a sauté pan over medium heat, and cook the onions and garlic (with optional chile pepper/paste if desired) until soft and fragrant, about 8 minutes.

  4. Stir the onions and garlic into the cooked quinoa, along with the Parmesan cheese, chopped ham, parsley, 1/4 cup bread crumbs, and cream cheese. Stir in two eggs until well mixed. Season mixture with salt and pepper to taste.

  5. Chill quinoa mixture for at least an hour, or overnight (covered with plastic wrap).

  6. Break two remaining eggs into a shallow bowl and whisk a pinch of salt and a pinch of sugar into the eggs. Place 1 1/2 cups bread crumbs into another shallow bowl or dish.

  7. Shape the quinoa mixture into small balls or oval croquettes. Dip each croquette into the egg mixture, and then into the bread crumb mixture to coat. Set aside on a plate until all the croquettes are breaded.

  8. Heat 2 inches of oil in a heavy skillet or stockpot with high sides to 350 degrees (or used a deep fryer). Carefully fry croquettes in batches until they turn golden brown. Remove croquettes from the cooking oil using a slotted spoon, and drain them on paper towels. Serve warm.

  9. Croquettes can be kept warm (or reheated) in a 200 degree oven for up to an hour.

Makes about 15 golf-ball size croquettes.

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