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Vegetarian Recipes

Southwestern-Style Quiche with Quinoa Crust

Southwestern Style Quiche with Quinoa Crust

Southwestern Style Quiche with Quinoa Crust

Every so often I come across a new idea or technique in a recipe and I feel like a whole new world of inspiration and possibilities has been opened up to me. For example, when I first tried spiralized vegetables and realized just how much variety and versatility there was in this one concept, I spent days making lists of recipes and flavor pairings that I wanted to try. I mean, I’m pretty sure that even if I spiralized something every day for a lifetime, I couldn’t cook my way through all of them!

A similar revelation hit when I stumbled upon a recipe for a quinoa-crusted quiche in the December issue of Cooking Light. The filling options alone are pretty much endless, and then if you expand the crust idea to different grains, seeds, nuts, and perhaps even legumes?! There is just so much potential for deliciousness.

Southwestern Style Quiche with Quinoa Crust

One of the biggest reasons why I don’t make quiche more often is, honestly, because making pie crust is such a pain. You have to make the dough, then chill it, then roll it out, then chill it, then par-bake it, then let it cool…simply put, it’s a process. So I was definitely pleasantly surprised when this quinoa crust came together in around 40 minutes! Okay, yes, that’s still a significant chunk of time, but you can cook the quinoa and bake the crust ahead of time, and there is very little hands-on time in either of these processes. Plus there is no stress of having to roll out the dough – you just press and go!

The original Cooking Light recipe paired the crust with a Mediterranean-influenced filling, but we decided to change it up and go the southwestern route with ours. Mostly because black beans, bell peppers, and pepperjack are always a good thing. This quiche definitely brings the flavor – it has just enough spice to get your tongue tingling, but not so much that you’ll be furiously gulping down water – and between the quinoa, eggs, black beans, and cheese it packs an extra large dose of protein into every serving.

Southwestern Style Quiche with Quinoa Crust

Southwestern-Style Quiche with Quinoa Crust

With eggs, cheese, quinoa and black beans, this Southwestern-inspired quiche is packed with protein. Quinoa crust adapted from Cooking Light's Spinach and Feta Quiche.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings: 8 servings


For the crust

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup dry quinoa rinsed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle powder
  • 1 large egg beaten

For the filling

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small red onion diced
  • 1 small red bell pepper seeded and diced
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 cup cooked or canned black beans rinsed
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 4 ounces pepperjack cheese grated


  • Heat oven to 375ºF.
  • In a medium saucepan, bring the water to a boil. Add the quinoa, salt, and chipotle powder, and turn the heat to low. Cook, covered, for 15-20 minutes, or until all of the water has evaporated and the quinoa is tender. Remove from the heat and let sit for 5 minutes.
  • In a medium bowl, mix together the quinoa and egg. Press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a greased 9-inch pie plate. Bake for 20 minutes. Let cool while you prepare the filling.
  • In a medium skillet over medium heat, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Stir in the red onion and sauté until translucent, 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the bell pepper and smoked paprika to the pan. Saute for 3-4 minutes, or until the pepper is tender. Stir in the beans and season to taste with salt and black pepper.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, cheese, and bell pepper mixture. Pour into the quinoa crust. Place the uncooked quiche on a parchment-lined baking sheet (to catch any filling overflow or spills) and bake for 35-50 minutes, or until set. Let stand for at least 5 minutes before serving.


Both the quinoa and the crust can be prepared ahead of time! Just store, well wrapped, in the refrigerator until you are ready to make the filling.
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  • Reply
    Ana @ The Awesome Green
    February 18, 2015 at 12:46 pm

    I love the “quinoa crust” idea! Any filling would work, but I really like the protein-load of beans, egg and cheese. I am sure this is a hearty dish, but one quiche slice paired with a greens salad would make the perfect dinner for me (especially after a workout). Great recipe, Joanne! 🙂

    • Reply
      Joanne Bruno
      February 19, 2015 at 12:41 pm

      Exactly! That’s what I love most about the quinoa crust – it can be paired with pretty much anything. Plus the protein boost from the eggs, beans, AND quinoa definitely makes it a great post-workout meal!

  • Reply
    [email protected] eco friendly homemaking
    February 18, 2015 at 7:04 pm

    Okay now this is so my kind of dish!! Looks delicious.

    • Reply
      Joanne Bruno
      February 19, 2015 at 12:40 pm

      Thanks Alicia! I adore those southwestern flavors as well!

  • Reply
    February 19, 2015 at 9:10 am

    This looks scrupmtiou <3

    • Reply
      Joanne Bruno
      February 19, 2015 at 12:37 pm

      Thanks Anna!

  • Reply
    Mary Beth Elderton
    February 19, 2015 at 12:22 pm

    Again…your recipe posted with perfect timing. I just looked at a bunch of eggs in the fridge and wondered what to do with them. This looks delicious!

    • Reply
      Joanne Bruno
      February 19, 2015 at 12:36 pm

      Yay!! It’s definitely great for using up eggs. Hope you enjoy it!

      • Reply
        Mary Beth Elderton
        February 20, 2015 at 6:46 pm

        OMG! This was absolutely delicious! I made it for dinner tonight, and it is so good! I topped each serving with a bit of salsa and served mixed roasted veggies on the side. ( I know my oven to cook slowly, and it did take the full 50 mins. )

        • Reply
          Joanne Bruno
          May 24, 2015 at 10:18 am

          So glad you enjoyed this!!

  • Reply
    Mary Beth Elderton
    May 24, 2015 at 4:02 pm

    I have made this several times now. I’ve taken to making muffin pan size so they are easy to save and reheat. Everyone loves them. I have only modified the recipe in very small ways according to what I have on hand–it is delicious as is.

    • Reply
      Joanne Bruno
      May 24, 2015 at 4:27 pm

      That’s so good to hear and I LOVE the idea of making them smaller in muffin pans. Perfect grab and go breakfast!

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