Fig and Quinoa Cupcakes19

Posted by chockylit in Fig,Quinoa (Sunday October 11, 2009 at 3:29 pm)

Fig and Quinoa Cupcakes

Quinoa is some kind of wonder food (at least according to my daughter’s pediatrician) as it’s a unique complete protein and is gluten-free. My husband eats it often as a part of his generally healthy diet. It was his birthday this week so I thought to incorporate one of his current favorite foods into a cupcake.

I wanted this recipe to have quinoa in it, but I didn’t want it to taste healthy. It is a cupcake after all. So I started with a basic cake recipe, swapped some flour for cooked quinoa, and called it a day. The resulting cake was moist and tasty with a nice crunch/chew from the quinoa. It did however not rise up so much and shrunk a bit after cooling.

But that didn’t bother me in the least. What was to be fig filling became a fig layer and it all worked out great. I cooked up some figs with vanilla and sugar (they weren’t super ripe), layered some of the cooled mixture on each cupcake, and topped that with a dollop of cream cheese frosting. All together a tasty treat that everyone enjoyed.

As a final note, I used black quinoa I bought at Whole Foods. I tried the black as I thought it would look more interesting than the plain. Having tried both, it’s also a bit crunchier (in a good way) and nuttier. There is also red quinoa which would likely work just as well.

Quinoa Cupcakes
26 regular cupcakes / 350 degree oven

3/4 cup quinoa
1-1/2 cups water
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1-3/4 cups sugar
4 large eggs, room temperature
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup + 2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Rinse the quinoa well in a fine sieve under a stream of cool water. This will remove a natural coating that tends to make quinoa bitter.
2. Bring the quinoa and water to a boil, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes.
3. Remove lid and cook off any remaining liquid. Transfer to a bowl to cool.
4. Beat butter until softened. Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
5. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until well combined.
6. Measure the flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl and whisk to combine.
7. Measure out the milk and vanilla and stir to combine.
8. Add about a third of the dry ingredients to the butter/sugar and beat to combine. Add about a half of the milk/vanilla and beat to combine. Continue adding, alternating between dry and wet and finishing with the dry.
9. Fold in the cooked quinoa.
10. Scoop batter into cupcake cups about 3/4’s full. Turn oven down to 350 degrees and bake cupcakes for about 22-25 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.

Note: These cupcakes won’t rise up very much due to the weight of the quinoa and will contract some with cooling.

Quinoa Cupcakes

Fig Filling

16 ounces figs, chopped
1/3 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons sugar

1. Add figs and water to a medium saucepan.
2. Add the vanilla and stir in the sugar and bring to a boil.
3. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer.
4. After 10 minutes mash the figs in the pot with a potato masher.
5. Taste and adjust with more sugar if needed.
6. Cover and refrigerate until cool about 2 hours.

Fig and Quinoa Cupcakes

Cream Cheese Frosting

2 sticks (1 cup) butter, room temperature
1-1/2 packages of Philly cream cheese
3-4 cups sifted powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

1. Beat butter at medium speed until creamy.
2. Add cream cheese and beat until combined.
3. Sift 3 cups of the powdered sugar into the butter and cream cheese. Beat until combined.
4. Add more sugar until you get to the consistency and sweetness you like. I used 4 cups.

Fig and Quinoa Cupcakes

1. Top the cooled cupcakes with a layer of fig filling.
2. Frost with a dollop of frosting.
3. Top off with a slice of fig.

19 comments for Fig and Quinoa Cupcakes »

  1. Hey, I’m glad you’re back! I hope to see you more often–I love your site! Keep doing what you do :)

    Comment by Lisa — October 11, 2009 @ 4:26 pm

  2. these look delicious! it is always such a treat to read a post by you!

    Comment by Ren-Yi — October 11, 2009 @ 6:09 pm

  3. I love how you used figs with quinoa. The seeds in the figs and the quinoa kernels both have that tiny, pop crunch. They’re pretty classy looking too! A little bit each- rustic, modern, healthy and sweet.

    Comment by Selina — October 12, 2009 @ 1:32 pm

  4. waouh ! I’d like to eat one (and then nothing can happen to me. what a dream your cupcake is !!!)

    Comment by miss carnetO — October 12, 2009 @ 2:49 pm

  5. Oh holy yum!
    I have been lurking hoping to see you post more recipes again soon.. so happy to see that it has come at the expense of some very tasty looking treats!

    I just bought a box of quinoa from Trader Joes and am anxious to apply them in this new and interesting capacity!!

    Comment by Janice — October 14, 2009 @ 5:26 pm

  6. Hooray! I’m so glad your blog is back up. I missed it!

    Comment by Eilie — October 15, 2009 @ 12:21 pm

  7. Oh hooray are you back?!
    This is my favourite blog it is so wonderful to see new posts!

    Comment by pepper — October 19, 2009 @ 5:45 am

  8. Yikes, I just now got an email that a comment was submitted. Sorry it took so long to approve them!

    I am making no promises just yet, but I miss developing recipes and sharing them, so I am starting back slowly. I have another recipe planned for next week – still figuring it out. So, look for that.

    If anyone has any out-there ingredients or combinations they would like to see – email me at chockylit at gmail dot com.

    Comment by chockylit — October 19, 2009 @ 7:13 am

  9. Welcome back !! I can’t wait to see you next cupcakes !

    Comment by Maybe — October 20, 2009 @ 6:00 am

  10. wow – these look great
    I am thrilled you’re back – this is still the first place I head to for cupcake inspiration – I have tried lots of your recipes with great success – thank you!

    Comment by Victoria — October 27, 2009 @ 10:45 pm

  11. So giddy that you are back! I’ve used your chocolate cupcake recipe countless times to great success: And I always make 2x the cream cheese frosting and eat the left over portion on ryvitas.

    Comment by ER — October 30, 2009 @ 5:12 pm

  12. I’m very glad that you’re back; used to read your blog all the time, it’s great that you’re back ;o))

    A question someone here might be able to help with …where can I buy mini nut cups, other than from the Baker’s Kitchen? I initially ordered from them, they got the order wrong and I have been chasing them for the last 2 months to send the correct cups; they are non-responsive at all, really horrible customer service and I’m losing my patience… and running out of time too!

    Thanks a lot

    Comment by Evap — November 2, 2009 @ 4:08 am

  13. Hey, you’re back! Welcome!!!

    Comment by Garrett — November 4, 2009 @ 8:41 am

  14. yum yum yum yum I am going to make these, they look so moist and delicious. Love quinoa, the food of kings!

    Comment by girl in mint — November 9, 2009 @ 12:27 am

  15. What a truly beatiful and unique cupcake!I have been trying to incorporate more quinoa into my baking! Such a great blog!

    Comment by Heather — January 28, 2010 @ 1:50 pm

  16. Hmm…I wonder what the result would be if you substituted quinoa flour for the regular flower in the recipe?

    Comment by ammie — February 18, 2010 @ 12:26 pm

  17. We are health food freaks and absolutely love this recipe for quinoa cupcakes. As we have quinoa at least weekly, we’ll be trying this one out. Thanks so much for sharing.

    – Ashley, Dress My Cupcake

    Comment by Ashley with — December 30, 2010 @ 10:28 am

  18. Love this quinoa cupcake recipe!

    Comment by Ashley with — December 30, 2010 @ 10:29 am

  19. Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wished to say that I’ve really enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. In any case I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again soon!

    Comment by Conveyancing — February 18, 2011 @ 12:20 pm

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