Tuna and Quinoa Cakes

Yup, it is Friday again and that means it is time for another installment of Frugal Fridays. What is it? FF is a food event started by my good friend Jerry of Cooking by the Seat of my Pants. This event is all about frugal cooking. You have to create a dinner for 4 with US $10 or less (a little bit more is OK, too) This event is quickly becoming very popular because, let’s admit it, the economy is not in very good shape right now. If you have been reading this blog for awhile you might notice that I like to cook easy and unpretentious food (no fancy names, not too many fancy ingredients) I believe that cooking healthy and delicious food is something everybody can do with a little bit of imagination, so this event is perfect for this blog and that’s why I am making a very important part of it. Without any more ado this is what I made for this event this week:

Tuna quinoa baked cakes Serves 4 Preparation time: 20 minutes Cooking time: 25-30 minutes For this recipe you will need:

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cans tuna
  • 1/2 onion chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, deveined and chopped
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 TBSP chopped cilantro
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • all purpose flour (optional)
  • sour cream


  1. Rinse the quinoa in a fine strainer or cheesecloth very well before cooking. This step is very important to remove the saponins that can give it a bitter taste.
  2. Cook 1 cup of quinoa in 2 cups of water with salt to taste until water is absorbed. Let it cool down for 5 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C)
  4. In a large bowl mix cooked quinoa, tuna, onion, garlic, pepper, eggs, cilantro and salt and pepper to taste. If the mixture is too runny add all purpose flour until manageable.
  5. With a large spoon form cakes over a greased baking sheet.
  6. Bake for 25-30 minutes.
  7. Serve with a sour cream. Sprinkle some cheese on top and enjoy.

About this recipe:

  • If you can’t get quinoa where you live you can substitute with rice or even refried or mashed beans.
  • I thought about frying the cakes in canola oil, but that would’ve added a lot of calories to the dish. However, I believe it would’ve been tastier.
  • You could add some cheese to the mixture and even a little bit of milk or cream. You’d have to add some flour to be able to work with the mixture, though.


  • They certainly are healthy and cheap and look delicious. Have prepared a recipe for FF and shall post it hopefully next week.

  • They look great Ben…although I have to admit I haven’t really been sold on the quinoa craze. And then I read that you have to rinse it before cooking with it (hmmm…maybe thats what I’m doing wrong).

  • Those look great. I think I would try them with rice – in keeping with frugality, I have rice in the pantry, but not quinoa. I’ve never cooked with quinoa, in fact, I don’t think I’ve ever even eaten it! 🙂

  • I love quinoa Ben, great recipe and good for us too!

  • I love Quinoa too Ben! Very healthy and nutritious. I could have that after i’m finish eating my slice of carrot cake. Maybe it will make me feel less guilty!

  • I have been enjoying quinoa lately and these baked quinoa and tuna cakes sound really good!

  • Savoury cakes are the best! These look so yummy ….one problem though: once you put sour cream on the table there’s no guarantee I’ll pass it on to the other guests 😉
    Thanks again for participating Ben!

  • Great looking cakes, Ben. I’ve only worked with quinoa once, so I should probably give it another go.

  • Oh, what a great idea! I only just tried quinoa recently – and I think this would work really well!

  • I just tried this recipe tonight and substituted red pepper flakes instead of the jalapeno pepper and they turned out AMAZING! Thanks for the great recipe! 🙂

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