What are Quinoa Flakes?

Quinoa flakes - a high protein vegan breakfast idea
Quinoa flakes - a high protein vegan breakfast idea.

Quinoa is growing in popularity, but have you heard of or tried quinoa flakes yet? Quinoa flakes are a great gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan breakfast idea. Find out what quinoa flakes are, how to use them and where to find them.

Quinoa flakes are made from pressed quinoa - no more, no less! You get all the healthy benefits of quinoa with a more familiar breakfast texture and a quicker cooking time.

I like to use whole grain quinoa for savory lunches and dinners, but I prefer quinoa flakes for a quick breakfast with a bit of fruit or maple syrup for sweetness, or sometimes I add hemp protein powder or ​hemp seeds for even more protein in the morning. ​See also: What is quinoa?

Nutritional Value of Quinoa Flakes

Quinoa flakes are naturally very low in calories, are very low in fat, and are cholesterol-free. They are an excellent source of plant-based protein and dietary fibers. One-third a cup of dry quinoa flakes provides about 130 calories and just two grams of fat, and, like all naturally vegan foods, they're completely cholesterol-free. Quinoa flakes also provide a healthy amount of dietary fiber - about 2.5 grams per 1/3 cup, and 4.3 grams of protein. Like quinoa, quinoa flakes are a great source of protein, especially for vegetarians and vegans. See also: More details about quinoa flake nutrition

Shopping for Quinoa Flakes

While you can often find quinoa in the bulk foods section of health food stores, I've yet to see quinoa flakes in bulk. Instead, I've seen them stashed along with the other gluten-free foods at health food stores, and occasionally in the breakfast foods aisle near the oatmeal and other breakfast grains.

This is where my local Whole Foods keeps them. The Safeway in my neighborhood has quinoa flakes in the "natural foods" aisle. See also: Shop online for quinoa flakes

How to Cook Quinoa Flakes

Unlike quinoa, quinoa flakes are ready in almost no time, just like instant oatmeal! Just boil some water, add quinoa flakes and let it sit for a minute or two, stir, and you're ready to go! Use a 1:3 ratio of quinoa flakes to water (one cup of quinoa flakes to three cups of water). You can always adjust the water to your preference. I like to add a touch of soy milk just before eating, so I tend to use a bit less water.

According to the brand of quinoa flakes I use, they can also be prepared in a microwave in a 1:2 ratio (one cup of quinoa flakes to two cups of water). Microwave on high for 2 minutes for one serving and up to six minutes for four servings. 

Quick tip: While I often eat quinoa flakes on their own, I like to mix them in with some oatmeal, just to stretch them out a bit, since they are pricier than other breakfast grains.

Quinoa Flakes Recipes

How do you like to use quinoa flakes? My latest favorite breakfast bowl is oatmeal and quinoa flakes mixed together with peanut butter, sprinkled with either hemp seeds or a bit of hemp protein powder.

 Here are a few ways to cook with healthy quinoa flakes: