Amaranth Cakes (Tested)

Serves     Makes 20 to 24 patties


This can be served as an appetizer with a dip, or you could also top a salad with one of these cakes. I found the texture and flavor to be similar to that of falafel. Amaranth seeds can usually be found in the bulk bin section.

1 cup amaranth seeds
2 cups water
1 tbsp. oil
3 green onions, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 jalapeno pepper, minced, seeds removed for less heat
zest of one lime, save lime to make the sauce (below)
1 tsp. cumin
¼ tsp. chipotle chili powder (optional)
¼ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 large egg, beaten
1/3 cup finely chopped cilantro (about 1 cup leaves)
¼ cup dried breadcrumbs (if necessary)


½ cup dried breadcrumbs
½ cup Parmesan cheese, finely grated


½ cup prepared mayonnaise
1 chipotle chile, minced
1 tbsp. lime juice

Stir all ingredients together.


Boil 2 cups of water in a medium saucepan along with a ½ teaspoon of salt and add the amaranth. Reduce the heat and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes. If amaranth is still too wet at the end of 25 minutes, increase heat and cook until dry.

Heat a small sauté pan over medium heat and add the oil, then add the onions, garlic and jalapeno. Sauté just to soften, don’t let the garlic get brown. Stir this into the cooked amaranth, along with the rest of the ingredients, through the cilantro. The mix may become loose after the addition of the egg, if so add ¼ cup breadcrumbs. Let mixture cool completely.

Mix the breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese together on a large plate.

To make the patties, scoop a couple of tablespoons worth of the mixture into your hand and press the mixture into a ball of sorts. Fair warning, the batter is a bit difficult to work with. It is crumbly and wants to fall apart. Make sure it is well chilled before using and don’t make the patties too thin. Gently lay the cake on the breadcrumbs and cover with more crumbs. Remove from crumbs, if the cake wants to crack just push it back together the best you can, including more crumbs if need be. Place directly in hot skillet with a couple tablespoons of oil and flatten with a spatula just a bit. Once the cake is in the hot pan you won’t have any more problems with it breaking up.

Cook for a few minutes, until it is a medium brown, flip over and cook for another two minutes. Add oil as necessary between batches.

Serve hot or at room temperature with chipotle mayonnaise.

Notes: For our purposes of a potluck, these patties can be made a day ahead of time, brought to the meeting and warmed in an oven. Or if you make them just before the meeting and transported them without being refrigerated they can be served at room temperature. You just don’t want to serve them cold out of the fridge.


Notes and Instructions

Recipe adapted from:

Photo credit: Linda McElroy