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Spinach & Quinoa Balls

Loaded with plant protein, packed with fibre and a rich source of magnesium, these tasty little morsels are served with a broccoli pesto dip and make a great portable lunch or picnic option.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time35 minutes
Servings: 4 people


For the quinoa and spinach balls

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp tahini
  • 1 cup baby spinach finely chopped
  • 1 small clove garlic minced
  • 1 tsp ground flaxseed
  • 2/3 cup quinoa
  • 2/3 cup ground almonds
  • 1/2 small red onion very finely diced
  • The juice of half a lemon
  • A generous pinch of sea salt and black pepper

For the broccoli pesto

  • 1 small clove garlic
  • 1 tbsp pine nuts
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1/2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup broccoli florets tips only
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • A handful fresh basil
  • A pinch of sea salt to taste


  • Rinse the quinoa thoroughly under cold water. Add to a saucepan and cover with water by about two inches. Bring to a rapid boil and cook for 12-15 minutes until the water has evaporated and the quinoa is fluffy and doubled in size (add more water during cooking if required). Transfer the cooked quinoa to a mixing bowl to cool.
  • Preheat the oven to 200°Celsius, 180°C fan assisted and line a shallow oven tray with non-silicone baking paper.
  • Add the ground almonds, garlic and onion to the bowl with the cooked quinoa. Stir everything together until well combined.
  • Add the spinach and stir through.
  • Add the lemon juice, olive oil, tahini, salt and pepper. Mix together so that the ingredients start to bind.
  • Divide the mixture into 12 even balls and arrange across the lined oven tray. Transfer to the oven to bake for 18-20 minutes until hot through and golden brown all over.
  • Whilst the quinoa balls are cooking, prepare the pesto. Add the pine nuts, nutritional yeast, garlic, basil, lemon zest and broccoli tips to a food processor. Season to taste and pulse well to combine.
  • Slowly drizzle the oil into the food processor a little at a time to form a pesto consistency, taste for seasoning and adjust by adding more oil if needed.
  • Serve the quinoa balls with the broccoli pesto.
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Blog/Article content reflects the author's research and diverse opinions, not necessarily CNM's views. Items may not be regularly updated, so represent the best available understanding at the time of publication.

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