Moroccan Gluten Free Meatballs with Quinoa

Moroccan Gluten Free Meatballs with Quinoa Recipe

Published On July 10, 2014 | By Elise | Gluten Is The Devil Recipes, Lunch/Dinner Recipes

      Ahhh… Meatballs, one of life’s greatest comfort foods. On the note of comfort food, it was about two years ago now that I suddenly fell in love with Moroccan food, after making a recipe from a food magazine. I fell in love with the cuisine, as it is hearty, fresh, nutritious and delicious – all the things I love. If you take the time and put some love into this recipe, you will have yourself delicious gluten free meatballs, Moroccan-style, with quinoa too of course!


by Gluten Is The Devil

<SERVES 4 as a meal>

1 hour  + 10 minutes preparation/cooking time


  • Measuring spoons
  • Mortar and pestle
  • Chopping board
  • Knife (to slice garlic and lemon)
  • Kitchen scissors
  • Food processor (optional)
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Paper towel
  • Large plate (e.g. serving platter)
  • Measuring cup
  • Sieve
  • Medium saucepan with lid
  • Large deep frypan with lid
  • Plastic coated tongs
  • Heatproof dish
  • Aluminum foil
  • Baking tray
  • Baking paper
  • Medium mixing bowl
  • Large serving spoon
  • Four serving bowls and forks, to serve
  • Tablespoon


  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup parsley leaves
  • 2 slices gluten free mutligrain bread (optional)
  • 500g lamb mince
  • 1 cup white quinoa
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus 1 teaspoon extra
  • olive oil spray
  • 1/4 cup slithered almonds
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed mint leaves
  • 800g can good quality gluten-free chopped tomatoes
  • cracked sea salt
  • cracked black pepper
  • ground cumin
  • 1 lemon
  • 4 tablespoons gluten-free natural yoghurt (optional)
  • gluten-free harissa paste (optional)


1. Preheat a fan-forced oven to 200°C.

2. Measure out the cumin and coriander seeds and crush the seeds inside the mortar and pestle.

3. Using a chopping board and knife, peel and finely dice the garlic. Finely chop the parsley with the kitchen scissors.

4. Optional: Over the food processor, break apart the two slices of gluten free multigrain bread. Place the lid on the machine and process the bread until it forms breadcrumbs.

5. Lay some paper towel on the large plate or serving platter. In the large mixing bowl, with clean hands, mix the ground cumin and coriander seeds, half of the garlic, chopped parsley, (optional) fresh gluten free breadcrumbs and lamb mince. Split the mince mixture in half and then in half again. Using your hands, roll each section of mince mixture into six even-sized meatballs (you should have 24 in total). Place them onto the paper towel-lined plate/dish.

6. Using the measuring cup, measure out one cup of white quinoa and place it into the sieve. Rinse the quinoa under cold water and drain accordingly. Place the quinoa into the medium saucepan and cover it with two cups of cold water. Cook the quinoa according to the instructions on the packet.

7. Meanwhile, heat one tablespoon of olive oil in the large deep frypan over medium to high heat. Using plastic coated tongs, gently pick up each of the meatballs and place them in the pan. Fry the meatballs until browned all over and just cooked through, turning as necessary. Spray the pan/meatballs when necessary with olive oil spray to avoid the meatballs sticking to the pan and/or burning. Remove the meatballs from the pan using the tongs, place them into a heatproof dish, cover the dish with foil and set aside.

8. Meanwhile, line the baking tray with baking paper. Measure out 1/4 of a cup of slithered almonds and spread them evenly over the baking tray. Place in the oven until lightly browned (up to five minutes). Be careful not to burn the almonds. Meanwhile, roughly chop the mint leaves using the kitchen scissors.

9. In the large deep frypan, warm the remaining teaspoon of olive oil and lightly fry the reserved garlic until lightly golden. Add 600g of the chopped tomatoes to the pan and bring to the boil. Turn the heat to low and using the tongs, add the meatballs to the tomato base, followed by some cracked sea salt, black pepper, and ground cumin, to taste. Replace the lid and increase the heat until bubbles appear, then lower the heat and simmer the meatballs for five to ten minutes, covered.

10. Add the cooked quinoa, toasted almonds and chopped mint to the medium mixing bowl. Slice the lemon and squeeze fresh lemon juice over the quinoa, as desired. Stir the quinoa mix.

11. Using the large serving spoon, serve up a scoop of the quinoa mix into each of the four serving bowls, followed by six meatballs and sauce. Garnish each bowl with a tablespoon of gluten free natural yoghurt and some gluten free harissa paste, if desired. Sit back, relax and take delight in your warm bowl of wintry nutrition!

Moroccan Gluten Free Meatballs with Quinoa Recipe (2)

Tips for cooking our Moroccan Gluten Free Meatballs with Quinoa recipe:

  • if you prefer your meatballs quite saucy, feel free to ad the full 800g contents of the gluten free chopped tomatoes, as opposed to the specified 600g in the recipe
  • gluten free harissa paste may be found in some delicatessens and/or specialty food stores

About The Author

- Hello! I'm Elise, the creator of Gluten Is The Devil. I want to show the world that following a gluten-free diet does not mean missing out on beautiful, nutritious, flavoursome food. I'm here to share my gluten-free recipes and ramblings with the world. Happy gluten-free eating!

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