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How to Make Quinoa Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Though this recipe for Quinoa Chocolate Chunk Cookies includes some refined ingredients like sugar, seeing as we had never run across a quinoa-filled cookie, Kristen whipped it up for all to see with the understanding that those who prefer all-natural ingredients can use substitutes for sugar, butter, etc. So please, no finger-pointing comments from the food police on this one. Thanks, and enjoy. - Ben Kim

This recipe calls for quinoa, which adds a nutty and chewy crunch to these delicious, gluten-free cookies!


Planning ahead is essential to this recipe as the quinoa needs to be cooked and cooled before mixing into the dough.


1 1/4 cup Brown Rice Flour
1/4 cup Cornstarch
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup honey
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup cooked quinoa, cooled
1/2 cup unsweetened, dried coconut flakes
1 cup dark chocolate chunks or chips


Preheat oven to 375 F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.


Whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, salt and baking soda.


In mixing stand or electric mixer and bowl, cream butter, sugars and honey until light and fluffy.



Add eggs, vanilla and almond extract and mix until pale and fluffy - about 2 more minutes.


Mix in flour mixture, 1/2 cup at a time to 'wet' ingredients using a wooden spoon.


Stir in quinoa...




and chocolate.


Stir until just combined.


Scoop spoon size balls of dough (I use an ice cream scoop to make nice, even-sized cookies) onto sheets an inch apart. Bake until golden brown, approximately 12-15 minutes.

Cool cookies on wire rack.


Enjoy these mouthwatering Quinoa Chocolate Chunk cookies!

Makes approximately 18 large cookies or 24 smaller cookies.

Cookies freeze very well if stored in an airtight container for up to 3 months.

*If you are not gluten sensitive, you can substitute rice flour and cornstarch with 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour.

Recipe was adapted from:


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Yum! Martha Stewart has a recipe on her website for quinoa muffins with raisins. The recipe as is is WAY too sweet, but very good with 1/2 the recommended sugar, switching out raisins for dried cranberries and AP flour for whole wheat. It is a great way to use up leftover quinoa! Looking forward to try these.

I'm relatively new to the substitute world in baking, and would like to make these cookies but without egg or butter. I've used oil in place of butter before, do you think it would work in this recipe? I've also just taken out egg and upped the baking soda a little to give some lift... Can anyone offer some other tips?

I will try these with coconut oil rather than butter, and banana instead of the egg, reducing the sugar as well because the bananas are naturally sweet. Gluten free! Looking forward to giving these a try.

Louise ,

Unless you cannot eat butter, or eggs, then you can try Egg replacer. They sell it at most markets in the health food section.

That said you would want to eat Eggs from chickens that only eat Organic, and make pastured eggs. These are not commercial eggs that you find in the store, that say, Range free. That is BS.

Mother Earth News collected samples from 14 pastured flocks/Chickens across the country and had them tested at an accredited laboratory. The results were compared to official US Department of Agriculture data for commercial eggs. Results showed the pastured eggs contained an amazing:

• 1/3 less cholesterol than commercial eggs
• 1/4 less saturated fat
• 2/3 more vitamin A
• 2 times more omega-3 fatty acids
• 7 times more beta carotene
The yokes are Orange no Yellow.

That said, you also would want to eat/buy only organic Pastured Butter.
Cows that are outside / Pastured.Eating the grass, and bugs also.
That butter has K2 Mk4 in it, which takes calcium to our bones and not our arteries.
Once you eat Pastured butter, you will taste and smell the differents, besides it being healthier for you..Yummy.
Pastured, does not mean "Pasturized", which you do not want to eat.

Since I am vegan, I can sympathize with your wish for substitutes. In these cookies, however, I doubt they could be used without detriment to the cookie - maybe switching to oil, but not the eggs. I just want to mention that most people don't seem to realize how bad for you oils are (almost all, except possibly coconut) - yes, even olive, imo. Advertisers have done a stupendous job duping people into believing vegetable oils are better for you than "saturated fats". Do you know how most oils are extracted (chemicals?) They just aren't "natural" and I am convinced are a root cause of much of the disease we face today. I would choose organic or even conventional butter over oil any day of the week. Tearing apart whole, natural foods to make them "healthier", again, not my cup of tea. I believe in Mother Nature. In other words, leave the fat in the milk, don't smash the butter fat into unnaturally small molecules (homogenize)and think man has improved on nature. Studies have found that there are substances in the egg white that make the yolk healthy and vice versa - again, leave it like it was made. Maybe Dr. Kim would like to do an article on his take on this.

You can also sub flax seed for eggs- 1 T flax meal + 3 T water= 1 egg. Worked just fine with my cookies :)

I just cannot wait to take a crack at these. They sound fabulous. One thing: I'd recommend going to the health food store and buying some non-GMO cornstarch there - if you dislike GMO foods. I believe that most cornstarch is from GMO corn but am willing to stand corrected of course.

Yes, I agree with the commenter. You can find organic cornstarch at most supermarkets and the price is pretty good. In addition Redpath sugar is all made from 100% sugar cane, no sugar beets, no it is non-GMO. If you want to avoid any synthetic pesticides then buy organic sugar, but the Redpath for icing, brown, etc., does me good.

These cookies sound delicious, I look forward to trying this healthier snack.

We just tried this recipe, and the cookies are unbelievably good! (FYI: We have discovered that if you soak the Quinoa for 30 minutes then rinse before cooking, it takes the bitterness out of the grain.)

I'm grateful for a no-gluten chocolate cookie that can be made from scratch. In my opinion, the dough is too liquidy and soft and therefore the cookies spread out too much. Of course others may have had a different experience.

So I am putting the remainder of the dough in the freezer for 15 minutes, then baking the cookies.

Also, at what point do we put in the corn starch?

In any case, this is a healthy, tasty cookie, so thanks very much!

I always appreciate new ways to use quinoa, but this recipe contains
12 tablespoons of sweeteners (white sugar, light brown sugar, honey), about 624 calories, and 1 cup or half (my bag of) chocolate chips (a little over 5 ounces) adding about 743 calories. That turns out to be roughly 57 calories per cookie (24 small), or 76 calories per cookie (18 large) basically from sugars, without taking into account the caloric content of the coconut flakes, empty-carbohydrate cornstarch, brown rice flour, eggs and butter.

So they may be really good, but they're really fattening, and contain two many calories deriving from non-nutrient ingredients.

I don't mean to be a kill-joy, but I think this recipe can be tweaked to a healthier form, using 1/4 cup of sorghum, almond or other nutritive flour for the cornstarch, adding 1/2-or up to 2/3 cup of mineral-rich coconut sugar instead of refined white and light brown sugars and honey.I'd also recommend using chocolate chips with 70% or more cacao solids, because these have far less sugar and far more antioxidants than plain "dark" chocolate.You can even buy a bar and chop it yourself.

Thanks Kristen W. for your many creative recipes, and I hope you will accept my suggestions in the spirit in which they are given.

Ok, food police! I was also surprised by the list of sweetners but glad that Dr. Kim pointed out that other sweetners could be subbed. Love this recipe, perfect for my leftover quinoa!

Thanks so much for posting those substitutions for the sugars and cornstarch. As a health coach, getting people to at least try other foods like quinoa can be a challenge. I don't like to give recipes that contain sugar, but sometimes look at it as a small(?) tradeoff. It's not easy trying to tell clients to try eating one thing and they wonder why I would recommend a recipe with questionable ingredients. I will experiment with this recipe with your suggestions. I use coconut sugar as a sweetener and love it. By the way, I don't know what the purpose of the cornstarch is.

Wow!Fantabulous! Thank you! Lori Ann