Red Quinoa Crab Cakes

Fiesta Friday #49 with a Little Bit of Smoke

Happy Fiesta Friday! 

With a splash of red for Valentine's Day!

Fiesta Friday, hosted by the lovely Angie over at the Novice Gardener, is my favorite online party. Plus, Angie is truly one of the sweetest people I have met in the blogging community.

This week, I’m especially excited because I’m co-hosting the party with Mr. Fitz! I’ll be the one with red quinoa crab cakes. 🙂

 So, what is Fiesta Friday?

Fiesta Friday is an online party, where many bloggers share posts in a link up. We bring appetizers, desserts, photographs, memories, flowers, etc. There is truly something for everyone at this party. We then go around and comment, meet and greet, etc. It’s a good time, and how I met some of my first blogging friends.

This week as a co-host, I’ll be commenting as an official FF rep, and helping to pick out the features for next week. That’s right, your post can be FEATURED in the following Fiesta Friday post.

How do I join?

Fiesta Friday

It’s simple to join. Write a Fiesta Friday post about your weekend, your week, etc. It can be about anything that you want to bring to the party: food, decorations, stories, photographs, etc. Then, link your post up using the link to the right. (There are a few guidelines you must follow to be featured.)

Be sure to tag your post with “Fiesta Friday” and to link back to the hosting blogs, so we can come stop by. (That’s the Novice Gardener, Mr. Fitz, and me!)

What are you bringing to the party? 

As I rang in the new year this week, I began reminiscing on 2015. I shared my Top Posts of 2015 earlier to day.  So, for Fiesta Friday, I am bringing the first dish I made for my blog: NerdSteak’s Red Quinoa Crab CakesRed Quinoa Crab Cakes

This dish is not only delicious, but it comes with a quick little story too!

What’s the story?

Courtesy of
Courtesy of Mickey Vacations

When I decided to start a blog, I wasn’t much of a cook. (And, honestly, mom still helps out with many of the recipes on this blog.) However, I had been embracing a world of dietary restrictions with celiac disease and food allergies, so I had plenty to share.

My mom went away for a weekend. I decided to surprise her with some crab cakes, and then blog about it of course! However, I had never cooked any form of seafood. Plus, we had recently moved, so my kitchen was located in the basement with limited air circulation. (We now have a vent down there.)

Red Quinoa Crab Cakes
Courtesy of

I asked NerdSteak about an egg-substitute for his crab cake recipe, and began cooking. Despite my arrangement of fans to the small basement window, the alarm went off almost instantaneously as I began frying the crab cakes!

Rather than coming home to a relaxing dinner, my mom received a panicked phone call asking her for the alarm code. And, then a second one after she gave me the wrong code. Did I mention that we had just moved?

Nonetheless, at the end of the night we both had the opportunity to enjoy this dish, and I hope you do too!

Most importantly, how do I recreate this dish?

NerdSteak's Red Quinoa Crab Cakes (Egg-Free)

Allergies:  Contains Shellfish.


  • IMG_66691 cup of Red or Rainbow Quinoa
  • ¼ cup Gelled Chia Seeds
  • 1½  cups of Lump Crab Meat
  • ¼ cup of Diced Celery
  • ¼ cup Diced Red Onion
  • ¼ cup of Diced Red Pepper
  • 2 tbsp. Chopped Parsley
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • ½ tsp. Black Pepper
  • ¼ tsp. Garlic Powder
  • ¼ tsp. Red Pepper Flakes
  • ⅜ cups of Rice Flour, and more to coat cakes
  • Olive Oil for frying


  1. Cook quinoa according to package.
  2. Gel chia seeds by pouring ⅓ cups of chia seeds and 2 cups of water into a jar.  Shake vigorously and rest for 15 seconds. Repeat. Refrigerate for 10-15 minutes until the mixture gels.  (You’ll use ¼ cup of this gel.)
  3. Mix quinoa, crab, celery, onion, red pepper, and parsley in a large bowl.
  4. Add rice flour.  Then, gelled Chia seeds. Mix until consistent.
  5. IMG_6685Form the mixture into cakes and coat in rice flour.
  6. Heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat.  Brown both sides of the crab cake until golden.  (Recommended: 2-3 minutes per side).
  7. Remove excess oil with a paper towel. Serve with a sauce of your choosing.

Tips and Modifications: 

  • If you don’t like any trace of hot spices, you can take out the red pepper flakes.
  • Use Superfine Rice Flour! Honestly, it’s never grainy and that makes all the difference in the world.
  • On a couple of crab cakes when I was forming them I added just a little bit of extra gelled chia seeds.  Try this if some of your crab cakes have trouble sticking together!
    With a splash of red for Valentine's Day!
    With a splash of red for Valentine’s Day!

So please, come join us over at Fiesta Friday! I look forward to seeing you there! 

32 thoughts on “Fiesta Friday #49 with a Little Bit of Smoke

  1. I’ll be posting the link-up early tomorrow, Kaila! So excited to have you as my co-host! I LOVE your crab cake recipe! I’m so impressed with the addition of quinoa and chia in it. I’ve never thought about it. Such a clever idea! 🙂

    1. Thanks! Gelled chia seeds is one of my favorite egg substitutes for non-baked goods. It wouldn’t work very well in a cookie though! Can’t wait to co-host, you’re always such an amazing host! Happy 2015! 😀

  2. I don’t do seafood.. these look great though! and spot on for the fiesta! Ok.. grab a cold glass.. fill it with bubbles… (its gone midday here!)… Let’s party like it’s 2015!

  3. They look delicious! I’m not a very healthy eater myself so I am intrigued by your ingredients, Kaila! Clearly I’ll have to read up on chia …
    Happy Fiesta Friday and thanks for co-hosting!

    1. Awh, thanks! I’m not the healthiest eater, but I do try to eat in moderation. I eat gluten free (because I have celiac disease) and then avoid my eight food allergies. The chia seeds are used as an egg substitute, which is also great if you meet someone who is vegan (or allergic to eggs like me!). My favorite egg substitute for baked goods is canola oil, baking powder, and water; it even foams!

      Thank you so much for coming to the fiesta, and Happy 2015!

  4. Yum Yum Yum… That sounds delicious Kaila. And I am so glad I can now comment on your post without all the filling up. So much more easy 🙂

  5. Kaila this looks fantastic! I love Crab cakes! (I still eat it eventhough I have a slight allergy to it. I can’t say no to seafood!) I never thought of adding chia! Have you heard of Basil Seeds (Tukmaria)? They gel up even more than Chia seeds and much faster – I used to gel it up and just eat them straight out of the cup 🙂 I haven’t tried to cook with them though!
    Thank you for hosting FF!! Happy New Year! 😀

    1. Awh, no, I’ll have to look them up. I’ve tried chia and flax, and I prefer gelled chia seeds to gelled flax seeds! Thanks for the suggestion, and happy 2015!!

  6. Thanks for co-hosting FF Kaila. I’ll have to agree fully with your first paragraph regarding our favorite hostess Angie and all her wonderful contributions. She’s one in a million! Your crab cakes sound extra lovely, all that healthy goodness right after the holidays, it might be just what the doctor ordered. Great job! 🙂

  7. These look really yummy kaila, I’ve never thought of using chia as an egg substitute but it makes sense! The story about the smoke alarm made me chuckle too, always the way! Glad you got something yummy out of it though!
    Happy New Year!

    1. Very cool! Gelled chia is my egg substitute. I’m not certain how well this recipe would hold up baked; however, your Christmas one’s sound tasty too. Happy 2015!

    1. Thank you! It takes me so long to go through a container of chia seeds. I grind my own chia seeds and I currently only use them as an egg substitute, which means I don’t go through them very quickly. Maybe as you make more chia seed recipes, I’ll come up with more uses for my chia seeds! Happy 2015 to you as well. 😀

    1. Thanks, Lilly! I got the idea of quinoa from NerdSteak (another blogger), which is why they are named after him. Although, his recipes contains eggs, one of my food allergies. Happy 2015, and thanks for stopping by! 😀

  8. Kaila,
    I love red quinoa and crab cakes are a favorite of mine! This looks delicious! Thank you for sharing this recipe. I am surely going to make it. Using chia seeds is such a clever idea too!
    Happy 2015 to you!

    1. Thanks, Sandhya! I use the chia seeds as an egg substitute. I love using gelled chia seeds, but I don’t have many recipes that call for that form of egg substitute. My sister gave me a mortar and pestle last year, so I even grind my own chia seeds! Hope you have wonderful week! 🙂

      1. I have a mortar and pestle in my kitchen that I use for ginger garlic pastes etc.. I amgoing to try it for chia seeds as well.
        Thanks for the tip!

    1. Thanks! Sometimes I can be a true Amelia Bedelia in the kitchen, but this time my main problem was not haven a vent installed. I’m just glad that it came out in the end. Happy 2015! 😀

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s