Appetizers and Snacks/ Breakfast and Sweet Breads

Broccoli, Ham, and Cheddar, Quinoa Breakfast Cups

Quinoa Breakfast Cups - Broccoli, Ham, Cheddar (7 of 9)

Happy Friday friends!  I just got to Phoenix yesterday afternoon.  It is such a blessing to spend time with my Oma on her last days.  My parents, and my Aunt and Uncle, retired to Phoenix a few years ago, and I am so grateful they are close to her.  Family has been able to visit from across the country including my Aunt from Illinois, my Oma’s brother, and his daughter, both from Indiana.  My sister and David are here too, so I really couldn’t ask for better support.  I’ve always known the importance of family, but it is moments like this that you realize what a gift a family is.

It seems like the older I get the more and more I learn life is unpredictable, and there are no guarantees.  Especially right now as everyone gears up for back-to-school.  That means back to busy mornings, and hectic schedules.  I don’t have kids yet, so this time of year affects me less, but you can definitely feel the shift in energy every where you go!  The transition from Summer relaxation mode to juggling strict new schedules seems to happen overnight.  I know oftentimes, this new surge of busyness can mean eating well falls by the wayside.  But it doesn’t have to!

I started thinking about fun and easy (family-friendly) recipes that ensure everyone stays happy and well-fed during this new season.  The first recipe I am going to share is a spin-off of my spinach and egg breakfast cups.  These broccoli, ham, and cheddar, quinoa breakfast cups are easy to prepare, freezer-friendly, and make for a healthy and quick breakfast or snack.  They taste great hot or cold, which means you can pack them in lunches, throw a few in your bag to eat in between meetings, or even steal one as you’re running out the door.

Quinoa Breakfast Cups - Broccoli, Ham, Cheddar

This recipe makes 12 quinoa breakfast cups, but you can easily double the recipe if you’re feeding a large family, or want to keep a few in the freezer.  I usually keep 6 in the fridge for immediate consumption during the week, and store the other 6 in the freezer for those mornings I don’t have time to make breakfast.  Simply microwave them for 30-60 seconds (depending on how many you’re making) to heat through.  Cups pulled from the refrigerator will need less time to reheat.

I love to use broccolini in recipes like this because the tops and stems are much more tender and less pungent.  I do enjoy broccoli (now that I am an adult), but broccolini has a much more delicate flavor, and blends so well with ham and cheddar.  You can usually find organic broccolini at Trader Joe’s, but feel free to substitute regular broccoli if you want!

These quinoa breakfast cups are also a great way to incorporate quinoa into your diet.  Quinoa is a super-food, and packed with essential amino acids, vitamins, and minerals.  If you don’t eat pork, or want to make these vegetarian, simply leave out the ham.  Trust me, broccoli, cheddar quinoa breakfast cups will taste just as delicious and satisfying!

What are some of the ways you manage all of the changes that come with this busy season?  Leave a comment below to give your fellow readers valuable tips and tricks!

Broccoli, Ham, and Cheddar Breakfast Quinoa Cups

Print Recipe
Serves: Makes 12 Cups Cooking Time: 25 Minutes


  • 2 cups cooked quinoa (about 3/4 cup uncooked)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup broccolini florets
  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 3/4 cup diced ham
  • 1/4 cup shallot
  • 1/4 tsp red chili pepper flakes (optional)
  • salt and pepper, to taste



Prepare the quinoa according to package directions, and then transfer to a large bowl to cool.


Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees and liberally oil a standard muffin tin. Set aside.


Whisk the four eggs in a small bowl, set aside.


Steam the broccolini by adding it to a small bowl with 1/4 cup water, and microwaving it for 45-60 seconds. You don't want them mushy, just crisp tender. Drain the water and allow the florets to cool. Roughly chop the broccolini and add to the cooled quinoa.


Add the beaten eggs, ham, shallot, chili flakes, salt and pepper. Mix to combine.


Spoon the mixture into the muffin tin, filling each oiled well equally. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the edges of the muffins are golden brown.


Allow the quinoa cups to cool in the tin for at least 5 minutes before removing them.


To freeze: place completely cooled cups in a large gallon Ziplock bag.


To reheat: microwave the cups for 30-60 seconds depending on how many you're making. Cups from the refrigerator will need less time to reheat.


You can usually find organic broccolini at Trader Joe's, but feel free to substitute regular broccoli if you want! If you don't eat pork, or want to make these vegetarian, simply leave out the ham.

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