Today we will show you how to make quinoa flatbread at home, from scratch. After more than four hours of testing, we found a cheap, easy and quick way of getting a fluffy dough, without using quinoa flour. Now you can make delicious vegan and gluten-free flatbreads without worries and guesswork.
Quinoa flour is not always easy to find and quite tricky to make. If you don't have a seed or coffee grinder machine, you have to grind the seeds by hand because a blender won't do the trick - we did it with a mortar and pestle, and it took us almost an hour. We knew most of you wouldn't put up with this, so we tested a batter made using rinsed and cooked quinoa. This final test yielded better results and made the whole process faster and easier.
Other recipes out there bypass the cooking process. We tried it both ways and noticed that cooking quinoa first yielded softer and fluffier bread.
So why go through all this and not just make traditional flatbread? There are two good reasons to prepare this recipe using quinoa instead of conventional flour:
Quinoa is a superfood - abundant in proteins, fibres, minerals and antioxidants. It is among the few plant-based foods to provide complete proteins - a most impressive trait - making it an essential addition to vegan diets. We talk more about this here.
Quinoa is gluten-free, so people sensitive to gluten can now enjoy flatbread topped with their favourite foods.
Moreover, quinoa is incredibly tasty. All this results in nourishing vegan and gluten-free flatbreads to be enjoyed on their own or topped with other wholesome ingredients. A single serving has 200 calories and gives you 5 grams of fibres and only 9% of your recommended daily intake (RDI) for carbs.
What will you do with your steaming soft quinoa flatbreads? Stuff them, crisp them, or top them; the choice is yours!
Is quinoa flatbread gluten-free?
Our quinoa flatbread is indeed gluten-free. The quinoa seeds can be turned into fine flour or coarse meal and used to replace wheat flour in gluten-free cakes, biscuits and even bread.
Compared to other gluten-free flours, like rice or buckwheat, quinoa yields more nourishing and flavorful results. The tiny seeds are a superfood after all, and you can bring all their benefits into your bakes.
Making quinoa flour at home can be rather involved. In our flatbread recipe, we prepared a gluten-free dough using a quinoa-based batter and devised a simplified process. Take a look at our first two steps if buying pre-made quinoa flour is not an option.
If you are into gluten-free baking and are looking for more flavour and nourishment than rice flour or buckwheat flour, then give quinoa a try. You won't be disappointed.
Quinoa bread vs wheat bread: which one is healthier?
For people on a gluten-free diet, quinoa flour can be a wholesome alternative to wheat flour to make bread. Quinoa flour wins against plain white flour, whereas wholewheat flour puts up more of a fight and can be just as good to make bread, depending on your dietary needs. Let's take a closer look at the data and see what makes one type of bread better than the other, and why.
Here's how 100 grams of wholewheat flour stack against 100 grams of cooked quinoa - which we used to make our quinoa flatbreads - based on Healthline.com data.
Calories: Quinoa has 120 calories, while wholewheat has 340. Quinoa bread is better than wheat bread for a low-calorie diet.
Proteins: Quinoa has 4.4 grams of proteins against 13.2 grams for wholewheat. But the proteins from wholewheat come almost uniquely in the form of gluten - a compound harmful to celiacs - whereas quinoa proteins are complete. Proteins are "complete" if they comprise all the nine amino acids your body needs . It is rare for plant-based food to provide complete proteins, which are instead common in animal products. Quinoa bread can be an excellent animal-proteins replacement in the vegan diet, and it's gluten-free.
Fibres: Wholewheat takes the lead on this nutrient, with 10.7 grams against 2.8 in quinoa. Therefore, wholewheat bread is a better source of fibres for people that tolerate gluten.
Glycemic Index: Quinoa has a glycemic index of 50 while commercially produced wholewheat bread hovers around 70. So quinoa bread is better for people with diabetes.
Let's draw some conclusions.
If you are on a vegan diet, then consider replacing wholewheat bread with quinoa bread for a better source of proteins.
If you are on a gluten-free diet, then quinoa bread is the only suitable option here. Although there are many other types of gluten-free bread that you can enjoy, those made from quinoa flour will be more nourishing.
People with diabetes should opt for wholewheat over white bread, but quinoa bread is the better choice to keep blood sugar levels from spiking.
For everyone else, quinoa bread can be a flavourful alternative to the classic wholewheat loaf, but your body can benefit from eating both. You should choose any of these two over white bread, whose plain flour was stripped of most fibres and nutrients.
- Dried Quinoa
- Oat Milk
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Ground Flaxseeds
- Baking Powder
Rinse the dried quinoa two or three times until the water runs clear. Then, transfer it to a pan, cover with water, and bring to a boil.
Simmer the grains for 15 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed.
In a food processor, pulse the cooked quinoa with oat milk, ground flaxseeds, baking powder, salt, and oil until you have a dense batter.
The flatbread dough should be thick and slightly sticky.
Pour three spoonfuls of the quinoa bread batter over a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
Spread it with the help of a spatula or the back of a spoon to a 1/2 cm (1/4 inches) thickness and give the dough an oval flatbread shape (1).
Repeat until you have used all the mixture.
Now, bake the flatbreads for 25 minutes at 200°C (390°F) for conventional ovens or at 180°C (355°F) for fan ovens until they are nicely browned (2).
To avoid cracking, wait for the pitas to cool down completely before you carefully lift them from the baking paper with a spatula.
For extra flavour, sprinkle the wraps with linseeds, chia seeds or sesame seeds before baking the flatbreads.