This healthy Chocolate Quinoa Breakfast Bowl has cherries, almonds, banana, and coconut to get you off to a great start!
Chocolate for breakfast, yes please! Anytime I can sneak in chocolate to whatever I'm having for breakfast, while keeping it healthy, I am all over it.
I actually wasn't sure if I would like this Chocolate Quinoa Breakfast Bowl. I mean, chocolate and quinoa together? Quinoa is only supposed to be savory, right? Wrong.
Quinoa has a nutty flavor, so chocolate and quinoa are a great match.
Another quinoa breakfast recipe I made was my Spiced Quinoa Breakfast Bowl. It has warming spices and is topped with fruit and nuts.
What Is Quinoa?
Quinoa is a pseudo-cereal in the amaranth family, meaning it is eaten as a grain even though technically it's a seed.
It's gluten-free, making it a great substitute for recipes like tabbouleh which normally has bulgar in it. It also can be used in place of couscous in many recipes.
How Does Quinoa Taste?
Quinoa has a slight nutty flavor. It is chewy and fluffy. Since it has such a mild flavor, it can go in savory or sweet recipes.
This is an overview of the ingredients. To see the full list of ingredients with measurements and instructions, see the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
- Quinoa: Quinoa can be found in the bulk section of the grocery store in packages on the shelves.
- Almond milk: I used unsweetened vanilla almond milk, but you could use soy milk, oat milk, cashew milk or your favorite non-dairy milk.
- Cacao powder: Adds the chocolate flavor. You could also use cocoa powder.
- Maple syrup: Adds sweetness. You could also use agave syrup, dates, or your favorite sweetener.
- Vanilla extract: Enhances flavors.
- Almond extract: Adds a strong fruity flavor. You can leave it out.
- Salt: Enhances flavors.
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- To cook quinoa, heat a small saucepan on medium heat on the stovetop. Toast quinoa in the pot for a few minutes. This step is optional, but it gives a nice nutty flavor.
- Add almond milk and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes. Stir frequently so it doesn't stick. Let sit for 5 minutes to absorb liquid.
- Add cacao powder (or cocoa powder), maple syrup, vanilla extract, and salt.
- Top quinoa breakfast bowl with banana slices, cherries, cacao nibs or chocolate chips, coconut chips, and slivered almonds.
This recipe will last about 5 days in an airtight container in the fridge.
- If you purchase quinoa from the bulk section of the grocery store, make sure to thoroughly rinse your quinoa. It contains saponin, which gives it a soapy or bitter taste if not rinsed. If you buy packaged quinoa, make sure that it says it was rinsed before packaging.
- Toast your quinoa for a more nutty flavor before adding liquid and cooking it.
- As always, taste as you go. You may want more or less cacao powder or sweetener.
📖 Variations / Additions
Add or switch out any of these to change up the flavors and textures:
- Strawberries, raspberries, blueberries or other berries
- Mango, peaches or other fruit
- Hemp seeds, flax seeds, or pumpkin seeds
- Walnuts, pecans, roasted cashews
- Dried fruit
- Spices like ginger, cinnamon, or nutmeg
- Peanut butter, almond butter, or other nut butter
- Vegan yogurt
- Drizzle of chocolate sauce
- Vegan mini marshmallows
- Coconut milk in place of almond milk
Quinoa is a great way to start your day. It is packed with protein and fiber, keeping you full for hours.
If you've never had quinoa for breakfast, this recipe is a great place to start. I mean, chocolate for breakfast, come on!
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Chocolate Quinoa Breakfast Bowl
- 1 cup quinoa drained and rinsed
- 2 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk + more for serving
- ¼ cup cacao powder
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup + more for serving
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon almond extract (optional)
- Cherries or other fruit
- Slivered almonds or other nuts
- Coconut chips or flakes
- Cacao nibs or chocolate chips
- Heat a pot on the stovetop. Add quinoa and toast for a few minutes (optional).
- Add almond milk and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes, stirring frequently. Let sit for 5 minutes until the almond milk is absorbed and quinoa is fluffy and tender.
- Add cacao powder, maple syrup, vanilla extract, almond extract, and salt.
- Top with fruit, nuts, seeds, coconut chips, cacao nibs or chocolate chips.
*Note: Nutrition information should be considered an estimate only. Different nutrition calculators give you different results.
Whitney B says
I loved this! I had sweetened almond milk on hand, because I had found it on clearance, so I left out the syrup. 🙂 My girls (3 and 1) said it wasn't sweet enough... but I think that was mostly because they ate all their toppings first. 😛 Oh, well.