Cheesy Quinoa Veggie Bites – Healthy Vegetarian Snack Recipe for Kids

4.43 from 21 votes
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Cheesy Veggie Quinoa Bites make delicious, healthy snacks or simple gluten free appetizers. Easy to make with only four ingredients, and the recipe can be customized to whatever leftover or frozen veggies you have on hand. It’s hard to find quinoa recipes for toddlers and kids, but mine couldn’t keep their fingers off of these. You’ll love that they are packed with plenty of vegetables, whole grains, and protein, and the kids will love that they are packed with cheese!

Cheesy Veggie Quinoa Bites recipe image with title

My recipes reflect how I cook for my family. When I am creating recipes to share with you, sometimes I finally write down something I’ve made over and over again, such as Worcestershire Sauce Cast Iron Seared Cube Steaks. Other times I put a creative twist on a classic like the Shepherd’s Pie Loaded Baked Potatoes everyone loves.

Then sometimes, as with this recipe, I randomly throw something together and realize that I NEED to share it with all of you. 

Cheesy Veggie Quinoa Bites were born from two hungry little boys and me staring into the fridge at containers of leftovers. Now, my boys aren’t fans of just eating quinoa straight up. I have to be a quinoa ninja, so in this case, I went with two surefire bets – making cheesy quinoa and turning it into finger food.

Of course, I also had to add the leftover vegetables I had in the fridge too. And it was a total success! I had to stop them from polishing off the whole batch just so I could grab some photos. Heck, I had to stop myself too!

Cheesy Quinoa Vegetable Snacks for kids on a small rectangle plate

How to Make Cheesy Quinoa Bites with Vegetables

It doesn’t take much more than stirring together a few ingredients and packing it into a mini muffin tin before popping them into the oven.

 

What is in quinoa bites?

  • Quinoa – cooked and cooled.
  • Cheddar cheese – I prefer Cabot Seriously Sharp Cheddar, but you can use your favorite.
  • Vegetables – cooked and chopped, any you like.
  • Egg
  • Salt

What vegetables can you use in these veggie bites?

In the photos, I used a mixture of steamed broccoli, carrots, and cauliflower. I have also used leftover roasted cauliflower and roasted broccoli. For the video, it was thawed frozen peas and carrots, but any thawed mixed veggies will work. Oftentimes I will add a thawed veggie blend of peas, carrots, corn, and green beans.

You can even get a little fancier and make Cheesy Spinach Artichoke Quinoa Bites. It’s totally your choice, so use whatever you have on hand, or whatever you are trying to sneak past your kids. I won’t tell. It’ll be our little secret!

How do you make Cheesy Quinoa Bites?

Make sure you check out the printable recipe card at the bottom of the post for the full amounts and details.

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F and spray a mini muffin tin with cooking spray.
  2. Mix ingredients together in a bowl.
  3. Divide the mixture evenly in the mini muffin tin, and pack it in firmly.
  4. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy.
  5. Serve hot or at room temperature. Store leftovers in the refrigerator.

Cheesy Quinoa Veggie Bites on a rectangular teal plate

How much dry quinoa do you need to make 1 cup of cooked quinoa?

Quinoa typically triples in volume when you cook it. So if you want to make exactly 1 cup of cooked quinoa, you will want to cook 1/3 cup dry quinoa in 2/3 cups of water or other liquid.

However, I recommend making a bigger batch because you can keep it in the fridge for up to a week and use it in a number of other recipes.

What can I do with quinoa?

Cheesy Quinoa Bites with mixed vegetables on a plate

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What is a good dip for quinoa bites?

What are more ways to get kids to eat veggies?

Cheesy Veggie Quinoa Bites Recipe

It can be hard to find quinoa recipes for kids. But when you add plenty of cheese and turn them into crispy finger food, you can be sure the little ones will gobble up these veggie bites. Make them as an easy vegetarian lunch recipe, or a side dish or snack.

4.4 from 21 votes

Cheesy Veggie Quinoa Bites

Veggies, protein and whole grains packed into fun, cheesy tots perfect for little fingers to grab and munch on!
Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 20 mins
Total: 30 mins
Servings: 6

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cooked quinoa , cooled
  • 4 ounces cheddar cheese , shredded (about 1 cup)
  • 1 cup vegetables , chopped and cooked {steamed, roasted, etc}
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 egg

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F. Spray a mini muffin tin with cooking spray or oil.
  • Add all of the ingredients to a bowl and mix until thoroughly combined.
  • Divide the mixture evenly between the cups of the mini muffin tin, and press down to pack it in firmly.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy.
  • If you do not finish them, store leftovers in the refrigerator.
Nutrition Facts
Cheesy Veggie Quinoa Bites
Amount Per Serving
Calories 143 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Fat 7g11%
Saturated Fat 4g20%
Cholesterol 47mg16%
Sodium 337mg14%
Potassium 145mg4%
Carbohydrates 10g3%
Fiber 2g8%
Protein 7g14%
Vitamin A 1770IU35%
Vitamin C 3.1mg4%
Calcium 153mg15%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Enjoy!

 

50 Comments
  1. Nora

    4 stars
    These are super tasty! I used vegan cheese (about 1/2 cup) and nutritional yeast to make these dairy free, and it seemed to work great. But man, even in a non-stick muffin pan sprayed with non-stick spray, these were stubborn to get out of the pan. I think I’ll try a tiny cookie scoop on a baking sheet next time.

    1. Brianne Cupcakes & Kale Chips

      Thanks for your feedback, Nora. I’m sorry you had trouble with them sticking to the pan, though. Hopefully they’ll come out well for you baking them on a cookie sheet instead. If you do make them that way, a sheet of parchment paper should help prevent them from sticking.

  2. Annie

    4 stars
    These are delicious! Do you need to refrigerate them? And if putting in a lunch, would they get soggy if I reheated them and put in a Thermos?

    1. Brianne Cupcakes & Kale Chips

      I’m happy to hear that you like the quinoa bites recipe, Annie. Yes, they should be refrigerated. I can’t answer your question about how they would hold up in a thermos, as I’ve never tried it. I can tell you that they’ll reheat better in an oven than they will in a microwave. Hope that helps!

    1. Brianne Cupcakes & Kale Chips

      I’m SO happy to hear that the quinoa bites were a hit with your family, Stephanie. Thank you for your comment and for rating the recipe!

  3. Dr. Cowan's Garden

    5 stars
    Thanks for the delicious recipe, Brianne. You are right these cheesy veggie quinoa bites make delicious, healthy afternoon snacks and breakfast.

    1. Brianne Cupcakes & Kale Chips

      Flora, I would fill the muffin tins 3/4 full and try adding 3-4 minutes of bake time. After that, poke one of the muffins with a toothpick to see if the batter is cooked or not. Please let me know how they turn out!

  4. Dee T

    4 stars
    I am gluten, sugar, corn and soy free so this recipe really called my name! I made a batch on Saturday, today is Monday and they are half gone. I will change up the next time I make them though. I think the artichoke made them bitter. I will put another veggie instead, maybe red pepper and I will add another egg too as I feel they didn’t stay together quite enough for me. All in all a great idea to add the quinoa. Thanks so much for the idea! And I will be checking out many of your other recipes as well.

    1. Brianne Cupcakes & Kale Chips

      Thank you for your comment, Dee. I’m sorry that the muffins weren’t as wonderful as you would have liked them to be, but it sounds like you’ve got great ideas for switching things up the next time you make them!

  5. Love this recipe..have used it many times now. They pack for work lunches and reheat in the microwave. I usually make a batch for the week of grab and go breakfast, lunch or snacks and even make as an appetizer( i try to make them more bite size.)

  6. Marcy

    We love these! I added some crumbled bacon to one batch for my husband. I love them in their healthier bacon free form!
    Thank you!!!

    1. Brianne Cupcakes & Kale Chips

      I’m glad you enjoyed the quinoa bites, Marcy, but your addition of bacon to them sounds delicious!

    1. Brianne Cupcakes & Kale Chips

      Michelle, if you cool the quinoa bites completely before freezing them and make sure to wrap them very well with plastic wrap and an outer layer of aluminum foil or inside of a freezer bag, I think they would reheat well.

  7. Gina

    First of all, these were amazing, thank you! Three questions: 1) how would these do if you froze them? 2) any advice to stop them from sticking to muffin tin? 3) have you ever tried this not in muffin tins? Just in maybe a 9×13 foil tray?

    1. Oh great, so glad you enjoyed them! I haven’t frozen them, but I think they would freeze well. Plenty of cooking spray. I have one muffin pan that never sticks, and one that, no matter what I make, always sticks. I haven’t tried in a tray. You wouldn’t get the crispy edges, but one idea is to use a little scoop and put little “tots” on a cookie sheet. I’ll have to try that!

    1. There are a number of egg substitute products (I think one is called Ener-G), and some people use ground flax seed mixed with water. Not sure how it would work with this recipe. I think trying that or even omitting it might be fine. It’ll taste good, they may just be a little softer and more fragile.

  8. Haha, I feel like some of the best dishes ever come from throwing a bunch of leftovers together! For some reason I never think to combine quinoa and cheese together but I’m loving these cheesy quinoa bites!! This is such a great idea!

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