Hazelnut Chocolate Quinoa Protein Crackers.
These homemade quinoa crackers are wonderful mini-snack bars, perfect for weight-control, energizing, and fighting the 3 pm slump. But they are frozen, so don’t think you can tote them around in your lunch box.
Still, if you have access to a freezer, keeping a stash is a great nutritional idea.
They are bound with either maple syrup or dates, they are protein-rich with quinoa, support sleep and mood with chocolate-provided magnesium, and a smear of chocolate hazelnut butter for fun. Actually, you don’t have to top them; just pop the discs and let them melt in your mouth.
Apart from the chocolate you will ingest, the nutrition of quinoa is actually boundless.
Quinoa is a magically nutritious seed so you will tackle hunger and nutrition at the same time.
It is gluten-free, and is one of the few plant foods that contain all nine essential amino acids. It is also high in antioxidants, fiber, magnesium, B-vitamins, iron, potassium, calcium, and vitamin E.
I’m not a calorie-counter, but sometimes I do think it’s interesting to break down the numbers nutritionally in certain recipes. This particular recipe is high in protein, so I thought I’d provide the nutritional breakdown here: One cracker holds: Calories: 101 Fat: 6g Carbs: 3g Protein: 9g.
So the protein content of one tiny cracker is impressive and the fat, of course, is healthy, primarily from quinoa and hazelnut flour. I’d say this is a win-win, wouldn’t you?
Let’s go make them!
Hazelnut Chocolate Quinoa Protein Crackers
- Line an 8-inch by 8-inch pan with parchment paper.Make date paste:If you choose to use this instead of maple syrup. To make date paste, soak 1 cup raw medjool dates (10-12) in water overnight; pit, blend into paste with 1/2 cup water.Puff or pop quinoa:
Rinse the cup of raw quinoa, pat dry, and put in a deep pan on the stove, high heat, stirring for about 3-6 minutes until it seems mostly popped. The popping noise and size is much less dramatic than popcorn. Quinoa tastes nuttier this way, and yet nutritional profile stays intact.
Make Quinoa Crackers
- In one bowl, mix all ingredients with a spoon.Don't use mixer or blender or you'll pulverize the popped quinoa. It's okay nutritionally to break up quinoa, it's just a crunchier experience if it stays intact.
- Pour into a square 8" x 8" parchment-lined square cake pan, or press into mold and freeze overnight. Remove, cut circles if you opted for the non-mold method.
- Top the circles with hazelnut butter or coconut cream, and fruit!Oh, they melt kind of fast, so keep them frozen until ready to eat. Use date paste (see recipe below) instead of maple syrup for more nutrients and fiber and less sugar.
Dee Dine is founder of Green Smoothie Gourmet, a plant based recipe blog, and author of the recent cookbook, Crazy Healthy with 4 Ingredients . On this blog you’ll find incredibly easy recipes with hidden veggies for anyone wanting to eat healthier, regardless of diet. Dee has graduate degrees in immunological nutritional studies and journalism. More about Dee Dine here.