In this savory quinoa muffin recipe, grated apple adds moisture, quinoa adds protein and sharp Cheddar cheese makes these healthy muffins a perfect pairing for soups and stews. To make these quinoa muffins gluten-free, use a gluten-free flour blend in place of the whole-wheat flour.

Ivy Manning
Source: EatingWell Magazine, January/February 2014


Recipe Summary

50 mins


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Coat a 12-cup muffin tin with cooking spray or line with paper liners and spray the liners.

  • Whisk quinoa flour, whole-wheat flour (or gluten-free flour blend), baking powder, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Whisk eggs, buttermilk, apple, oil and chives (or scallions) in a medium bowl. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. Add half the cheese and stir just until the dry ingredients are moistened; do not overmix. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tin. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top.

  • Bake the muffins until golden brown and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes before serving.


Make Ahead Tip: Individually wrap in plastic and freeze airtight for up to 1 month. To reheat frozen muffins, wrap in a paper towel and microwave on High for 30 to 60 seconds.

Equipment: Muffin tin with 12 (1/2-cup) cups

Look for quinoa flour in the baking section or near gluten-free flours. To make your own, grind whole grains of quinoa into a powder in a clean coffee grinder.

Whole-wheat pastry flour is milled from soft wheat and contains less gluten than regular whole-wheat. Both flours provide the nutritional benefits of whole grains. Find them in large supermarkets, natural-foods stores and online at and Store in the freezer.

No buttermilk? You can make “sour milk” as a substitute: mix 1 tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar into 1 cup nonfat milk; let stand for about 10 minutes before using so the acid can sour the milk.

Storage smarts: For long-term freezer storage, wrap your food in a layer of plastic wrap followed by a layer of foil. The plastic will help prevent freezer burn while the foil will help keep off-odors from seeping into the food.

Nutrition Facts

169 calories; protein 6.4g; carbohydrates 19.4g; dietary fiber 3g; sugars 3.7g; fat 7.3g; saturated fat 2.5g; cholesterol 41.4mg; vitamin a iu 178.1IU; vitamin c 1.2mg; folate 8.4mcg; calcium 193.4mg; iron 1.4mg; magnesium 7.2mg; potassium 67.5mg; sodium 325.1mg; added sugar 1g.

Reviews (10)

Read More Reviews
10 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 4
  • 4 star values: 1
  • 3 star values: 1
  • 2 star values: 3
  • 1 star values: 1
Rating: 2 stars
I was really hoping these would be great! I've made apple cheddar scones before and thought these would be similar. However I couldn't taste the apple or the cheese in the recipe. The quinoa flour really overpowered the other flavors and made the muffin taste rather earthy and bland. Maybe next time more apple and cheddar would help? Perhaps chunks of apple and cheese rather than using shredded ingredients? But on a positive note eating the bland muffins isn't too bad since I know how healthy I'm being! These are PACKED with nutrition!:) Read More
Rating: 5 stars
These were really delicious. I used 3/4 tsp salt and added some fresh ground pepper. I couldn't find quinoa flour so I made my own in my ninja blender. Read More
Rating: 1 stars
Meh I feel bad saying this but these were gross! Extremely bland and dry. They were hard to get down. If I ever try these again I'll double the recipe (sugar apples cheese chives milk) and also reduce the baking time. Read More
Rating: 2 stars
I'm sorry to say this but I can barely taste the apple or cheese and the dough is overpoweringly bitter. I made a double-batch of these anticipating they'd be great and now I'm not sure how I'll eat them all. I guess I could eat them with soup or chili. They taste bit like sourdough but not quite tangy or salty enough to truly be sourdough. If I was committed to fixing this recipe I'd take out the quinoa flour entirely and substitute it with a flour that has a more subtle flavour. I'd also consider doing the apples diced instead of grated adding a bit more salt and sweetener and being a smidge more generous with the cheese. However maybe I made a mistake or my palate is just different than other peoples'. Just thought I'd throw in my two cents after spending a couple of hours on this.... Read More
Rating: 4 stars
Delicious! I loved these. I used an extra sharp cheese and a nice Honeycrisp apple. I ground up some quinoa in the blender for flour (In retrospect I should have toasted it first or rinsed it a few more times--there's definitely a grassy taste to it which two of us liked and one of us didn't care for). They come out light and fluffy with a lovely crust of cheese. Only other con: I had a lot of dishes to do once they were in the oven but I concede that might just be me. Pros: tastes good healthy filling Cons: makes a mess quinoa flour has noticeable taste which isn't for everyone Read More
Rating: 5 stars
Perfect texture & mild taste I followed the recipe and yes they don't have a strong apple-cheddar flavor but they are delicious. I used extra-sharp cheddar as well. They reheat beautifully in the microwave (along with the soup I will have made with them);-) Pros: Healthy delicious Cons: A bit of work Read More
Rating: 5 stars
were wonderful & moist & i made my own flour went by the recipe to a t and came out perfect Pros: taste great i would deff make again! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
Not sure what previous reviewer did but these are fantastic. Used high-quality sharp cheddar cheese and tasted enough apple to appeal to me but if you want to add more it would also be good. I did use quinoa flour & GF flour which worked perfectly. Read More
Rating: 2 stars
Too dry The muffins were a bit dry and we couldn't really taste the cheddar. Would not make these again. Pros: easy to make Read More