Today we’re sharing two versions of savory veggie cakes, perfect for an appetizer or even as a whole meal. Nikki shares her cheesy vegetarian quinoa cakes while Jess shows you how to make spicy lentil cakes. The quinoa cakes are paired with an addicting spicy lemon and garlic aioli (it’s vegan!) that makes it feel like you are eating something way more guilt-ridden than quinoa! Both are protein and nutrient packed and perfect for a Meatless Monday or sneaking in some veggies.
Click the link below to find the recipes!
Spicy Lentil Cakes
I stumbled across this original recipe on Pinterest, and almost immediately disregarded it because bell peppers are one of the main ingredients. There aren’t too many foods I dislike but bell peppers and raw tomatoes are at the top of the list. I’ve tried many times to like tomatoes with no success, but I’m really trying to convert myself on the peppers. Bell peppers are so popular in vegan dishes! So I decided to give this recipe a try-and I absolutely loved it! You could probably sneak in any veggie you usually turn up your nose at and love these cakes. They’re super spicy and flavorful you won’t even notice how good they are for you!
I used a chia egg in this recipe. To make a chia egg mix 1 tablespoon ground chia seeds with 3 tablespoons water and set aside for about 10 minutes, until it becomes gooey. You can use chia eggs as an egg replacement 1:1.
- 1 1/2 cups cooked lentils
- 2 bell peppers, chopped (I used green and orange because I particularly hate red ones)
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 1/2 jalapeño, diced
- 3 heaping tablespoons of chopped parsley
- 1 chia egg
- 4 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1/2 cup to 3/4 cup flour
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- salt and pepper to your liking
Mash your cooked and drained lentils in a large bowl using a fork. Add all other ingredients and mix well.
The mixture should be sticky and easy to form into a cake. If the cake falls apart, add more flour as needed, or allow to sit in the fridge for 30 minutes. Form the mixture into small cakes the size of your palm.
Heat a small amount of oil in a pan over medium heat, and add the cakes, a few at a time. Fry for about 2 minutes on each side, or until crispy.
I saved the mixture in the fridge for a few days and formed it into cakes & cooked whenever I wanted them.
Cheesy Quinoa Cakes
These melty and cheesy quinoa cakes are seriously addicting and my go-to side, especially with fish. They are kind of like a cheesy potato pancake. I love them because they are super favorful and packed with lots of nutrients from the quinoa. The best part is, they are ready in about 20 minutes. Also, I made a quick garlic aioli that is a staple in my house- I also use it on sandwiches and dipping veggies (kind of defeats the purpose of eating veggies right?). It is so delicious and easy to make. Follow along below for the step-by-step directions!
For the quinoa cakes:
- 2 cups cooked quinoa (*about 4 cups before cooking)
- 2/3 cup shredded white cheddar or fontina cheese
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 4-5 green onions (plus 2 for garnish), sliced
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 1/2 tablespoon dried or fresh Italian parsley, finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, preferably garlic salt
- 1/4 cup olive oil
For the garlic aioli:
- 1/2 cup vegan mayonnaise, preferably Just Mayo Garlic Mayo (also available at Whole Foods)
- juice and zest of 1 lemon
- 2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- salt and pepper to taste
First, we’re going to make the quinoa cakes. Start by prepping your ingredients: grate the cheese if needed, cook the quinoa, beat the egg, and slice up your green onions.
Next, combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl. Stir to combine until evenly distributed. Let the mixture sit for about 5 minutes.
While your mixture is sitting, add the olive oil to a large sauté pan and heat over medium high heat.
Form your quinoa mixture into patties about the size of the palm of your hand (about 1/4 cup). Place each patty into the oil and cook for about 5 minutes on each side. You may have to repeat this process depending on the size of your pan. I cooked about 4 at a time and set them aside as they finished.
Transfer to a paper-towel lined plate until ready to serve. To make the aioli, simply combine all of the ingredients into a food processor and pulse until everything is combined and smooth. Spread over quinoa cakes and garnish with green onions. Enjoy!