Smashed Patties

One of my favorite foods to make early on in our baby led weaning journey was patties/cakes/croquettes. Whatever you call them, they are more technique than recipe: a little bit of binder, a little bit of grain, a little bit of a mashed vegetable, some seasoning or herbs. This is my “basic” recipe, but I wholeheartedly encourage experimentation to find flavors that you like. Basically, if you’re comfortable making some executive on-the-fly decisions in the kitchen, a basic ‘patty’ can become your best friend.

(Real talk: That would be just sad if this was actually your best friend…so let’s just say it will become a go-to recipe when you have some leftover mashed sweet potatoes. See? Not as sad.)

Smashed Patties
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  1. 1 cup mashed root vegetable (yams, potatos, parsnip are all favorites)
  2. 1 cup cooked grains (I prefer quinoa for its protein, but you also use other grains like rice or cous cous)
  3. 1 clove fresh garlic, finely chopped
  4. 2 T (a small handful) of freshly chopped herbs (I like scallions and chives most often, but also use parsley, basil or cilantro)
  5. 1/2 cup breadcrumbs (I like whole wheat panko best when I don't make my own)
  6. 1 egg
  7. pinch of kosher salt
  8. freshly ground pepper to taste
  9. avocado oil (for pan frying)
  1. Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl until well-incorporated. Or, use a food processor and add the egg, crushed garlic, salt, pepper and sweet potato until smooth. Add the cooked quinoa, breadcrumbs and chopped herbs, pulsing until incorporated.
  2. Form mixture into golf ball sized balls. If you have the time, I recommend placing in the fridge for 20-30 minutes. I've found this helps keep the patties well-formed during cooking, but is not a necessary step.
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon of avocado oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers. When hot but not smoking, add 2-3 golf balls, careful not to overcrowd the pan. Use a spatula to flatten into a patty size.
  4. Cook about 3 minutes each side, flipping when golden brown and continue to cook the other side for another 3 minutes or until golden brown.
  5. Remove from skillet and drain on wire rack or paper towels. Either serve with a sprinkle of fresh herbs or cool completely and store in fridge for snacks and meals during the week!
  1. I tend to make a large batch of sweet potatoes early in the week, so usually just mash one or two with a fork. They're so silky on their own they don't need the additional cream or stock and butter that mashed potatoes or mashed parsnips might need.