Quinoa Apple Spice Cake

This Quinoa Apple Spice Cake isn’t just a cake. It’s an institution. Can you really make that claim about a baked good? Yes. Only because of the fact that when most people think of quinoa, they think of a poorly cooked grain that they want to love but just can’t seem to come around to. Two solutions to this problem:

1. Learn how to cook quinoa well (ie throw a little olive oil and sea salt in when you’re boiling it – easy!)
2. Use it in cake. Nothing says “I know a thing or two about cooking” than putting a complete protein grain into a dessert.

This is one of those simple “mix and pour” cakes, meaning that you would have to go out of your way to mess it up. If you like a denser cake, lean towards the shorter side of baking time.

And serve with coffee and a good food politics article of course.

Quinoa Spice Cake


1 cup uncooked quinoa
1 cup buckwheat flour
1 large organic apple, peeled and diced
3 eggs
8 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup organic sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon real vanilla extract
shredded coconut


Cook quinoa and set aside. To cook quinoa, bring two cups of water to a boil. Add quinoa and a dash of salt and let simmer for 12-15 minutes, or until water has cooked off.

Mix dry ingredients.

Whisk coconut oil and eggs together and add to dry mixture.

Combine all ingredients, including quinoa, and stir in apple pieces.

Grease a 9-inch round pan with coconut oil, cover with a light layer of shredded coconut. Pour batter in and bake for 30-40 minutes at 350F or until knife inserted into center comes out clean.

This recipe happens to taste great with a multitude of extras thrown in. Play around with a handful of chocolate chips and some candied ginger for a real treat.

Like this recipe? It’s in the Culinary Cyclist cookbook with plenty of other good stuff… you might want to snag a copy. 

Comments 6

  1. Megan

    This is so intriguing! I love it!

    • Anna Brones

      Thanks Megan. Make it! It’s a personal favorite 🙂

  2. Quinoa question

    Hi Anna,
    If I have a pile of cooked quinoa, how much would I use? And have you ever used red quinoa?
    I can’t wait to try this recipe!
    (Sally Slater’s daughter)

    • Anna Brones

      I believe that quinoa cooks to about four times its size, so 1 cup of uncooked equals about 4 cups cooked. I have not used red quinoa in this recipe but I am sure it would work just great! This is a recipe that I experiment a lot with myself, so feel free to play around and let me know how it goes 🙂


  3. Amy

    I just made this cake and it was perfect!! I wouldn’t change a thing. Thank you!! We loved it!!

    • Anna Brones

      Glad to hear it! It’s one of my favorites 🙂

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