Found yourself with leftover quinoa? Why not turn it into these quick zucchini and feta fritters. Super tasty, they are ideal for either a light lunch or a simple dinner.
Total Time Investment: 30 Minutes
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Let’s talk for a moment about intentional leftovers. When you knowingly cook more ingredients than you require for a single meal, intending to use the extras in a different meal, you are creating intentional leftovers.
I always cook more grain than I require. Excess grain is such a useful thing to have on hand, as even a small amount of grain can be readily turned into a whole new meal. I can turn a cup of leftover rice into enough fried rice to feed the three of us, and I like using leftover quinoa in zucchini salad, Mediterranean quinoa salad, or these easy zucchini fritters.
So next time you are cooking quinoa for a meal, consider cooking extra to have on hand for these ridiculously easy fritters.
Can You Freeze Quinoa?
I know what you are thinking – why cook extra quinoa when you don’t plan on making fritters, salad or a grain bowl any time soon. And my answer to that is because quinoa freezes beautifully. So for no extra effort you can stock your freezer with leftover quinoa, and simply defrost the grain at a later date when you have a quinoa urge.
To freeze quinoa:
- Allow the cooked quinoa to cool completely. The safest way to do this is to place the leftover quinoa in the fridge overnight. The cooler the quinoa is when frozen, the fewer ice crystals that will form it freezes.
- Spoon the cooled quinoa into small containers or zip lock bags. I like to freeze the quinoa into 1 cup portions, which is a handy size for an individual salad or for these fritters.
- Label and date the containers or bags, and
- Freeze the quinoa for up to three months.
To defrost quinoa, simply place the container or zip lock bag in the fridge overnight. If you need to defrost the quinoa quickly, either place the container in warm water (if it is airtight) or quickly zap the container in the microwave.
Ingredient Substitutions for Feta, Zucchini & Leftover Quinoa Fritters
The quinoa can be replaced with any other leftover grain you may have on hand. These would be great with either brown or white rice, and you could even try leftover cous cous if you happen to have some on hand.
Swap out the feta for a fresh, crumbly goats cheese instead. Both are delicious in these fritters.
Use 3 Tablespoons of finely chopped brown onion or shallots in place of the spring onion.
I mix up the herbs I use in these fritters according to what is in the garden. You can use either one herb, or a mixture, depending on what you have on hand. I have found that basil, parsley and coriander (cilantro) to all work well in this recipe.
Spelt flour can be used in place of the wheat flour.
To make the fritters gluten free, use a plain gluten free flour in place of the wheat flour.
Tips & Tricks For Delicious Feta, Zucchini & Leftover Quinoa Fritters
This recipe will serve two people for a light lunch or dinner. If I am also cooking for The Princess, I just double the recipe. Bear in mind though, that increasing the quantities will also increase your cooking time.
Use a large, heavy based fry pan to cook the fritters. This will ensure that the fritters cook evenly, and brown beautifully.
If the fritter mixture seems slightly dry when it is mixed, just add an extra egg. Mix thoroughly, then proceed with the recipe.
I like to serve these fritters with a simple green salad and my favourite tomato relish. They pair well with a good tomato sauce, or some tangy relish or pickles.
Leftover fritters are perfect for tucking into the lunchbox. Which if you think about it, is like creating leftovers from your leftovers. How cool is that.
Made this recipe? Tell me how it went in the comments below. And if you loved it, please don’t forget to rate it.
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Zucchini, Feta & Leftover Quinoa Fritters
- 200 g (1 cup) grated zucchini
- 140 g (3/4 cup) cooked quinoa
- 70 g (1/2 cup) feta cheese crumbled
- 30 g (3 Tbsp) plain flour
- 1 spring (green) onion finely sliced
- 3 Tbsp fresh herbs (try basil & parsley) chopped
- 3 eggs large
- Salt & pepper
- Olive oil or ghee for frying
To make the fritter mixture
- Fold the grated zucchini up in a clean tea towel, and wring the tea towel to release some of the liquid from the zucchini.
- Place the zucchini in a medium bowl. Add the quinoa, feta cheese, flour, onion and herbs.
- Season well with salt & pepper, and mix thoroughly to coat the grated zucchini with the flour.
- Add the eggs to the bowl, and mix again to stir the eggs through the zucchini mixture.
To cook the fritters
- Place sheets of kitchen paper on a dinner plate or tray, and set aside.
- Heat a large fry pan over a medium-high heat, and add enough oil or ghee to form a thin layer over the bottom of the pan.
- Drop heaped dessertspoons of the fritter mixture into the oil, and immediately flatten the mixture with the back of the spoon to form a 1cm thick fritter.
- Gently cook the fritters for 3 - 4 minutes, or until the bottom of the fritters are golden brown.
- Flip the fritters, and cook for a further 3 - 4 minutes, or until the other side is also golden brown.
- Remove the cooked fritters from the fry pan, and place them on the lined dinner plate.
- Repeat with the reminder of the mixture.
- Serve with salad and your favourite sauce, relish or chutney.