Quinoa Zucchini Parmesan Fritters
Are these fritters? I really don’t know other than that they are little packages of goodness so I’m going with it. I first saw these on Diethood and decided to make my own based off of Katerina’s recipe. She’s all kinds of talented so make sure you’re pinning her recipes. Cade and I try really hard to eat a variety of foods and keep things healthy for most of our dinners. We are huge meat eaters at our house, but feel that moderation in all things is usually best so for most of our married life we have had meatless meals a couple of times a week. These quinoa zucchini parmesan fritters are starting to become one of my personal favorites.
Yes, they could most certainly just be a side dish, we do that next to marinated grilled chicken sometimes, but I also love them as the main dish with a side of fresh fruit. They remind me of chicken parmesan but they are vegetarian!
If you have yet to hop on the bandwagon with quinoa let me encourage you right now to take the plunge. It’s a fantastic grain and tastes similar to rice but more nutritional so there’s nothing to be afraid of. And it’s pronounced Keen Wah, not Qui Noah which I’ve heard countless times in the aisles of grocery stores. STOP. IT. Gah, it hurts my ears. So you start with your quinoa, I tend to make some and throw it in the fridge then turn it into different things for the next three days as it’s good both hot and cold, in soups, casseroles and as a side. I’ll link up a bunch of recipes at the end for you.
Once the quinoa is made just throw it, zucchini and a few other ingredients including Panko breadcrumbs into a large bowl. Panko is another love. It has great texture compared to regular bread crumbs so we hardly ever buy anything other than panko. Mix everything together and then form into little patties. You can easily skip the cheese for a dairy free option. Fist bump to all the nursing mommys out there.
Fry the little quinoa zucchini parmesan fritters in a skillet and serve alone, with a little cheese on top or my personal favorite is with a nice marinara sauce for dipping. I love dipping things too. I’ve passed it on to the kids as our oldest likes veggies and dip and the next loves bbq on everything. You’re welcome kids, you are welcome.
- ½ Cup Quinoa
- 1 Cup Chicken Stock or Broth
- 2 Cups Zucchini, shredded
- 1 Large Egg
- ½ Teaspoon Lemon Zest
- 1 Cup Panko Bread Crumbs
- 1 Teaspoon Italian Seasoning
- ½ Cup Pecorino Romano or Parmesan, grated, plus more for garnish
- ½ Teaspoon Salt
- 2 Cups Marinara for serving
- Parsley for garnish
- Olive or Grapeseed Oil
- In a small sauce pan over medium low heat, add the marinara and heat through.
- In a pot over medium heat add the quinoa and chicken stock. Bring to a boil, cover and turn to low. Simmer for 15 minutes, turn off the heat and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and set aside.
- Meanwhile, place the grated zucchini in a mesh strainer and add a pinch of salt, mix and let sit while the quinoa cooks.
- Remove the zucchini to paper towels or cheese cloth. Wrap tightly and squeeze out all the liquid.
- In a large bowl, add the quinoa, zucchini, bread crumbs, egg, zest, cheese, italian seasoning and salt. Mix until combined.
- Heat a skillet over medium heat and add a drizzle of olive oil. Form 3 patties with the mixture and place in the shimmering oil. Cook for 4-5 minutes per side or until golden. Remove to a paper towel lined plate to drain as you repeat with remaining quinoa.
- Serve with fresh marinara, cheese and a little parsley.