Dark Chocolate Quinoa Breakfast Bowl

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Grabbing a bite of our Dark Chocolate Quinoa Breakfast Bowl with fresh berries and banana

Truth be told, quinoa isn’t my first pick when it comes to grains. However, when disguised as a brownie-esque breakfast bowl, I’m all in.

If chocolate is involved, say no more.

Cutting board with quinoa, cocoa powder, vanilla, almond milk, coconut milk, and maple syrup for making a delicious vegan breakfast

This breakfast bowl is incredibly simple, requiring just 7 ingredients, 30 minutes, and 1 pot to prepare.

I’m typically an oats or granola fan, but the amount of protein and staying power in quinoa is hard to ignore – 1 cup cooked contains about 8 grams protein, 5 grams fiber, and tons of iron and magnesium! I can’t think of a better way to start the day.

Breakfast bowls filled with our gluten-free vegan Chocolate Quinoa Breakfast Bowls recipe

In addition to being nutrient-dense, this breakfast bowl is also naturally sweetened with maple syrup and rich with antioxidants thanks to cocoa powder. Fresh fruit and a square of dark chocolate make the perfect toppings.

I hope you guys love this bowl! It’s:

Chocolaty
Not too sweet
Hearty
Warm
Comforting
& Perfect for fall

If you’ve been wary of quinoa porridge in the past, I challenge you to give this one a try! The chocolate flavor makes this bowl irresistible, especially with a little melted dark chocolate on top. Talk about good morning.

If you give this recipe a try, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and take a picture and tag it #minimalistbaker on Instagram! We’d love to see what you come up with. Cheers, friends!

Fiber and protein-packed vegan breakfast of Dark Chocolate Quinoa Breakfast Bowls

Dark Chocolate Quinoa Breakfast Bowl

Simple, 7-ingredient dark chocolate quinoa breakfast bowl naturally sweetened with maple syrup and infused with rich cocoa powder! A healthy, hearty plant-based breakfast or snack.
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Wood bowl of our Dark Chocolate Quinoa Breakfast Bowl topped with fresh fruit
4.92 from 75 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Course Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? 2-3 Days

Ingredients

QUINOA BOWL

  • 1 cup uncooked white quinoa
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (plus more for serving)
  • 1 cup coconut milk (light canned, or the beverage in a carton)
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  • 2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2-3 Tbsp maple syrup or coconut sugar
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract (optional)
  • 3-4 squares vegan dark chocolate (roughly chopped)

FOR SERVING optional

Instructions

  • Thoroughly rinse quinoa in a fine mesh strainer for 2 minutes, using your hands to sort through and pick out any discolored pieces or pebbles that may remain.
  • Heat a small saucepan over medium heat. Once hot, add rinsed, drained quinoa and toast for 3 minutes, stirring frequently, to dry up water and slightly toast.
  • Add almond milk, coconut milk, and a pinch of salt, and stir. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to low and cook for 20-25 minutes, uncovered, stirring occasionally. If it stops simmering, increase heat to medium-low. You’re looking for a slight simmer throughout the cooking time.
  • Once the liquid is absorbed and the quinoa is tender, remove from heat and add cocoa powder, maple syrup and vanilla (optional). Stir to combine.
  • Taste and adjust flavor as needed. Add a bit more almond milk if you prefer the texture thinner. I added more cocoa powder and maple syrup for a more intense chocolate flavor.
  • Serve each bowl of quinoa with a small square of vegan dark chocolate, and any other desired toppings (listed above). I preferred mine with a bit more coconut milk, hemp seeds, and fresh fruit (optional).
  • Best when fresh, though leftovers will keep covered in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Reheat in the microwave, or in a small saucepan with additional almond milk to add moisture back in.

Notes

*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated without dark chocolate or any other additional toppings.

Nutrition (1 of 4 servings)

Serving: 1 serving Calories: 236 Carbohydrates: 40.9 g Protein: 7.5 g Fat: 6.7 g Saturated Fat: 3.1 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 120 mg Fiber: 4 g Sugar: 9 g

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  1. C says

    This was delicious and such a unique way to use quinoa. It’s usually not my favorite grain, but I had a bag of it that I’ve been trying to use up. I think this is now my favorite way to eat it! The extras warmed up well on the stove with a little extra liquid added.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Brianne, we think the texture is best when fresh and we haven’t tried freezing ourselves so we cannot guarantee results. Let us know how it goes if you give it a try!

  2. Kara Goodrum says

    Can I ask why you cook it uncovered? We’ve always covered our quinoa when we cook it; but I’m wondering if for this specific type of recipe it needs to be uncovered? Thanks

  3. Tonya says

    This is one of my favorite breakfast bowls now! Sometimes I use dried cranberries and sometimes bananas. It is yummy!

  4. Andrea Watson says

    I made this for breakfast today and it’s so delicious! I can’t eat oats, so this really appealed to me. I didn’t have almond milk, so I used Flax and it still came out great! I topped with fresh strawberries. I’ll be enjoying this for breakfast quite often I think! Thank you so much for the recipe. Your recipes have never let me down. Always delicious!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Aw, we’re so glad you enjoy our recipes, Andrea! Thank you for your kind words and lovely review! xo

  5. Cindy says

    I have never made teff. Have you ever toasted it lightly in oil in the pan before cooking? Could you try it in the instant pot if you have one? That is how I made this recipe using the rice setting. Maybe adjust the amount of water? A 1:1 ratio of teff to liquid keeps the seeds intact and al dente, according to what I read online. I think I might have to buy some teff and try it out!

  6. Cindy says

    This was delicious. I did change a few things, but I am certain it would have been just as great if I had not. First off, I halved the recipe. In place of the maple syrup, I used Cream of Coconut (not to be confused with coconut cream), because I had some open in the frig. I used all coconut milk because that is all I had. I made it in the instant pot on the rice setting. Next time I will make the whole recipe and maybe grate in some orange peel as I love chocolate and orange together. I plan to try this with amaranth and buckwheat as well. Thanks for this delicious inspiration. I think this would also make a delicious, healthy dessert!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Ooo, love the idea of adding orange! So glad you enjoyed this recipe, Cindy! Thanks for the review!

  7. Kate says

    I was initially skeptical, because I’m not a huge sweet breakfast fan, but I love quinoa and thought I’d give it a try. I’m so glad I did, because it’s definitely going into my regular rotation! I topped mine with sliced banana instead of chocolate, and am going to experiment next time with crushed pistachios and/or a drizzle of peanut butter. Thanks, as always, for the delicious, wholesome, and filling recipe!

  8. Donna says

    I was looking for gluten free recipes for my MIL who has Lupus. THIS is going to make her very happy and be quite the treat. I left out the chocolate pieces and sliced strawberries instead. Thank you for always posting great recipes, this one is exceptionally easy and so, so good!

  9. Clara says

    I made this receipt this morning for breakfast, and it was delicious! I’ve made quinoa for breakfast before, but I prepared it more like oatmeal (with water) and found it too bland. This was so much better!

    I topped with freeze dried raspberries (well… stirred in at the end with the cocoa powder), sliced almonds, and mini chocolate chips. The tartness of the raspberries really helped. I found the recipe, as written, too sweet… even though I only had 2.5T of maple syrup. Will try with only 1.5T maple syrup next time. Also plan to play with other seasonings – maybe cinnamon and cayenne, etc. Seems really versatile, and appreciate having this base receipt to work from.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yay! Thanks so much for such a thorough review and for sharing your modifications, Clara! So glad you enjoyed this recipe!

  10. Reger says

    Hello! Anyone know if this could be adapted with teff grain in place of quinoa? I’ve had trouble with teff turning stiff/sticky and would love to know if it could be made with to act more like quinoa for a breakfast.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Reger, we’ve had a similar experience with cooking teff and unfortunately don’t have a solution! Perhaps another reader will be able to chime in?

  11. katniss says

    Do you think I can use this recipe chocolate hazelnut overnight oats recipe to make the chocolate milk, and then just cook the quinoa with that? I’m trying to use dates as the sweetener so that there is no added sugar. Thanks! :)

  12. Barbara says

    I have made this so many times now. Then I go for a bit resorting to quicker options and then I remember. It is so good and so great to have something a little out of the ordinary to reach for. I have also made it using burnt sugar syrup and hazelnuts as a sort of treacle flavor. That’s pretty good too. All good if you have fresh berries.

  13. Annie says

    This was delicious! Banana topping is a must, so good with the chocolate! I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s breakfast!

  14. Cheyenne says

    At first I was skeptical of this recipe only because I am weird about textures of food like oatmeal. However I tried this and it is a breakfast game changer!! Absolutely delicious. The only thing I modified to give it some extra texture was that I added some low fat honey granola to top. Will definitely be making again.

  15. Michele says

    I would love to try the chocolate Quinoa breakfast bowl. I live alone so making a recipe with 4 serves is too much,especially if I’m trying it for the first time. I’m hopeless at trying to reduce amounts to give me 1 serve. I have this problem with just about everything 😿

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Michele, you can change the number of servings to just 1 and the recipe will adjust the amounts for you!

    • Belinda says

      Very delicious, this dish is now in my weekly rotation. Love the taste the bananas gave, it balanced out the deep rich taste from the cacao powder that I accidentally used 🤣. Bc I used the cacao powder I did not find the need to add the dark chocolate.

      I loved this , I shared it with two of my sister so far.
      Thanks 😊

  16. Danielle says

    How could I adapt this to left over quinoa already cooked in water? Made it before super yummy!! But didn’t get the liquids right…trying again!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hm, we’re not sure how that could work! It would be more liquidy/not creamy, or if cooking longer, the quinoa would end up more mushy.

  17. Rose says

    Hi there, I just made this and am soooo thrilled that I decided to make a double batch – delicious! I was sceptical…love quinoa and love chocolate, but didn’t really appeal to me as a breakfast idea. BUT, I was looking for a health bedtime snack and I found it! I used soy milk and it didn’t taste like soy – the beauty of chocolate – it can disguise anything. Like others, I had to ultimately add about a cup more milk at the end as the liquid was absorbing a bit too much. Anyway, thank you – it’s gorgeous!!

  18. Aydia Johnson says

    I’m so excited to make this! I’m wondering if multicolored quinoa will work in replacement of white quinoa?

    • jacquie says

      before i was vegan i made this using cow’s milk (we didnt have non dairy milk) and it was sooooo good!! i had leftovers that i ate as dessert the next day. now when i make this i use all oat milk. its amazing.

  19. Aleisha says

    I’m excited to try this! I’m wondering if I can substitute the coconut milk for all almond or soy milk?

  20. Gloria says

    I love this recipe, especially because I can use dark chocolate and cocoa. I made it using my Ninja Foodi and followed Malini’s instructions, done in under 4 minutes, yesssssssss. It came out delicious, I will now make this instead of oatmeal for breakfast. Now I’ll have to find other recipes using oatmeal 😃. Thank you for your recipes, none of the recipes that I have made from your website have failed. I share your site with everyone I can.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Aw, we’re so glad you enjoy our recipes, Gloria! Thanks so much for sharing! xo

  21. Stacy says

    Another yummy recipe! Thank you. :) I topped our bowls with dried cherries, dark chocolate chunks and hemp seeds, which made a dreamy, dessert-like, good-for-you breakfast. All of my kiddos loved it. Win!

  22. Marlene says

    I followed the recepie exactly exept I used all oat milk for the liquid, and topped it with some almond butter, raspberries and dark chocolate and it was perfect!! I love how it feels like you’re eating dessert while eating quiona for breakfast, Thank you for this recepie <3

  23. Bexter says

    I cook quinoa in large batches, divide it into portions for different recipes. How much does 1 cup uncooked quinoa equate to when cooked?

  24. izzy says

    This actually turned out really good to my surprise (no offense!) I wasn’t sure how good quinoa would be for breakfast but I’m trying to eat healthy nutrient packed breakfasts while I’m in quarantine at home… totally recommend trying this. And the cocoa powder is a must by the way. It’s a game changer. Plus I don’t feel guilty eating this even though it tastes so delish.

  25. Karla says

    Is this a recipe you could make ahead of time? I am looking for some breakfast ideas that I could make the night before and just heat it up.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yeah! That should work! When reheating add more dairy-free milk as needed to rehydrate.

  26. Amanda says

    Truly a miracle recipe. When oatmeal isn’t sounding good, this recipe saves the day. I’ve made this now 3 days in a row it’s so good. I do substitute the mills for just oat milk and do not use coconut sugar- just a dash of the maple syrup, Use no additional chocolate, and It’s still perfect. Thanks for the recipe!

  27. Heather says

    This was delicious! After having my gallbladder removed I was in a strict diet and this was perfect for breakfast. I didn’t have any coconut sugar on hand so I used granulated brown sugar. I added dark chocolate chips, banana and coconut flakes as a topping. Will definitely be making this again!

  28. Elisa says

    I didn’t have coconut milk, so just used unsweetened vanilla flavored almond milk. I also made the mistake of trying to put the lid on on low heat when my toddler was a little too quiet for my liking—the almond milk adds a frothiness that’s not present in water, and it boiled over almost immediately. I had to add more almond milk as it cooked, but it turned out creamy with just a little crispy crunch at the end.

    We didn’t have dark chocolate, so I added a small sprinkling of milk chocolate chips and stirred it in while the quinoa was still warm (with a toddler, it always seems like we eat food at colder than recommended temperatures).

    I added a bit more almond milk and banana slices to my bowl, while my husband ate it plain. I also gave some plain to my 15-month-old (it has the consistency of sticky rice and was easy for him to pick up). Toddler approved and asked for more!

    I enjoyed the slight chocolate and nutty flavor, and tomorrow I’m going to add strawberries!

    I also hope to try it in the instant pot in the future so there’s less hands-on time.

    • Malini says

      Hi. I made this in the instant pot and it came out perfectly. First roast the quinoa in sautee mode for 2-3 minuted while stirring. Then add the liquids, mix and cook for one minute on high pressure. Let it sit for 10 minutes before opening. I love this recipe. So healthy and delicious. Thanks.

      • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

        Thanks so much for sharing, Malini. We are so glad you enjoyed it! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating with your review? It’s super helpful for us and other readers. Thanks so much! Xo

  29. Deanah says

    I’m not a fan of quinoa – I could never get it to work for me, and then… I found this recipe!!

    Absolutely perfect! I made it exact to the recipe and topped with additional coconut milk (not much), fresh blueberries and fresh strawberries. Loved it!

    Thank you for sharing.

  30. Carolina says

    I looooved this recipe! It’s very easy to make and it’s delicious. It Tastes like dessert and it’s actually healthy and good for me. Everyone should give this a try.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks for sharing, Carolina! Next time would you mind adding a rating to your review? It’s super helpful to us and other readers! xo

  31. Annette says

    Sooo yummy!! And even my very picky teenager loved it . . . Putting it in my arsenal of early morning, high protein, high school breakfast options!

  32. Lara says

    This is a great replacement for people having gluten allergy or other special diets. When I made this I used only coconut milk (very light, not the cream) and I had to use a lot more than 2 cups of coconut milk. 2 cups dried up immediately and in order not to burn I had to add something like 2 cups in addition. Nobody else in the comment system seems to have this problem. I’m wondering what I’m doing wrong.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hmm, that’s rather odd! Usually quinoa requires a 1:2 ratio dry quinoa to liquid. Is if possible that you used quinoa flakes instead of regular quinoa?

    • Kendyl says

      I also had this problem! I usually bring my quinoa to a boil and then cover it, and this recipe calls for it to remain uncovered through the cooking process – so I think that is why I needed the extra liquid. Wasn’t an issue, just required closer monitoring.

  33. Crystal says

    Thank you for sharing this recipe! This is now one of my go-to favorites!

    Question also – where did you get these bowls? They are ADORABLE and I must have them for my kitchen!

  34. Kristin says

    Made the quinoa in my quick pot and while it was cooking I got everything else together. In 20 min it was ready. I added coconut 1tbs, sunflower seeds and pistachios I tbs each, raspberries and 1tsp chia seeds. It was so filling I ate light at lunch but what a great way to start the day easy all plant based and so good. I’ll make it again but I have a few servings left in the fridge

  35. Amy says

    This is my all time favourite breakfast! Thank you Minimalist Baker for bringing this bowl of joy into the world. I use frozen raspberries and a square of dark choc to finish it off. There is nothing better than this breakfast.

  36. Bree says

    This has been on my list to try for a long time. It’s definitely going to be a go to weekend breakfast recipe for sure! Super easy to make and super delicious!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We haven’t tried it with only coconut milk, but think it could work! It may be a little heavy, so if he can have a different non-dairy milk such as cashew or hemp, that might be a better substitute for the almond milk. If you give it a try, let us know how it goes! xo

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Kim, we don’t think it will be quite as creamy, but it should work! Hope that helps!

  37. Payton says

    This was the perfect (one day early) valentine’s day breakfast! Delicious, chocolatey goodness that still feels healthy. I didn’t have almond milk on hand so I used a full can of coconut milk and a bit of regular cow’s milk and it turned out great. Thanks for the wonderful recipes!

  38. TRACY HARP says

    I made your recipe exactly as written, using 2T of coconut sugar as my sweetener option. It was delicious with a bit more milk, blueberries, strawberries, a half sliced banana and a sprinkling of walnuts. I reheated the other 3 portions over the next 3 days. It was a welcome change from my usual oatmeal and fruit. The chocolate made it seem like an extra treat.
    Today I wanted to see if I could do it in the instant pot, I love the set it and forget it feature of the IP. I toasted the quinoa on the saute setting for a couple of minutes, than added the coconut and almond milk and salt. I set the IP for 1 minute and let it do a natural pressure release. I removed the lid and stirred in the cocoa powder, vanilla and coconut sugar. It worked perfectly. Now I have breakfast portioned out for the rest of the week. Just wanted to share in case someone else wanted to try the IP method.
    Thanks for all your wonderful recipes!

  39. Julia says

    I love this dish! I’ve made it for groups of 100 multiple times and it is loved by all who eat it! It is easy to make for large groups with varying dietary needs. We’ve enjoyed various toppings and “milk”combinations. It is also so simple to make for one or two people. This is by far one of the most delicious ways to eat quinoa. Thank you!

  40. Marta says

    If you don’t like the texture of oatmeal, try this! This is the first warm breakfast porridge that I liked – finally! Winter is saved! :D

    I tweaked the recipe a bit because I don’t like coconut milk, so I just used double almond. I also used honey as the sweetener and for serving I used toasted almond flakes (very nice crunch and flavour), frozen mixed berries for some warm/cold contrast and some peanut butter for additional protein. I didn’t really use any precise measurements and it still worked out fine. I plan on making a variation with apple sauce and cinnamon, though I bet that’ll be delicious as well. Thanks for the recipe!

  41. Sarah says

    This is one of our favourite breakfast bowls on cold days. My daughter once had the idea of adding orange – so I added the grated rind of one orange to the quinoa as it’s cooking and decorate the top with pieces of orange. Since then we’ve never looked back! Dark chocolate and orange work really well together here – it gets our day off to a perfect start!