How to Cook Quinoa with Video

Learn how to cook quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) which is not technically a true grain so I am separating quinoa from the other grains. It is my opinion that this one stands alone by its own rights. It is an amazing wonder food! The origin of this ancient food comes from the Andean region of South America which is where I learned how to cook quinoa. It has been a staple food along with corn and potatoes for 6000 years. The Incas held the crop to be sacred and referred to it as “the mother of all grains”. The local Inca emperor would traditionally sow the first seeds.

How to Cook QuinoaHow to Cook Quinoa

Quinoa has become highly appreciated for its nutritional value, as its protein content is very high (12% to 18%). It is a healthy choice for many vegetarians and learning how to cook quinoa is simple. Four ounces, about ½ cup will provide a child with enough protein for a day. It is also very high in calcium, magnesium, and iron, and a relatively good source of vitamin E and the B vitamins. It is gluten free and unlike other grains, Quinoa contains a balance set of amino acids for humans. It is a good food for dietary fiber and phosphorus.

Watch me wash quinoa above


When you purchase quinoa, check to see if it has been prewashed. If not it will need to be washed before using. The coating on the whole grains leave a bitter taste if not washed thoroughly. It is a simple procedure and in many dishes can be used while still wet. If grinding into flour it needs to dry out thoroughly before grinding.


Watch me grind quinoa into flour

BROCCOLI CASSEROLE RECIPE with quinoa

I started learning how to cook quinoa several years ago. I have tried it in many casserole recipes and many dessert recipes. All have turned out delicious! As a whole grain, you can substitute it for rice.

Because of the high protein in quinoa you do not need meat in this broccoli casserole recipe to get protein.

  • 2 Cups whole quinoa
  • 1 Medium chopped onion
  • 1 Cup chopped celery
  • 2 Cups coarsely chopped broccoli
  • 4 Cups chicken broth (or 4 cups water and 4 bouillon cubes)
  • ½ Cup slivered almonds


Preheat oven to 375F degrees.

Combine all ingredients in a greased casserole baking dish and bake for 1 hour or until quinoa is tender and broth has been absorbed.


QUINOA AND VEGETABLES

For each serving sauté:

  • 1 Cup hot cooked quinoa
  • 1 Teaspoon olive oil
  • ½ Cup chopped green pepper
  • ½ Cup chopped onion
  • 1 Clove minced garlic
  • 2 Teaspoons chopped basil
  • 1 Small chopped tomato
  • Salt & pepper to taste


To serve, line plate with 1 cup of hot cooked quinoa. Put sautéed vegetable over top. Top vegetables with freshly grated Parmesan cheese


QUINOA CARROT CAKE a favorite dessert when you learn how to cook quinoa

Grind quinoa into flour and try using it in recipes calling for regular flour. I did not like it as well in biscuits but the carrot cake and brownies were delicious. Because of the health benefits of quinoa I thought quinoa carrot muffins would be great for breakfast. I tried them using the carrot cake recipe, omitting the orange glaze, and they were great.


  • 3 Cups sifted quinoa flour
  • 1 Cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 ½ Teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 Teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 Cup olive oil
  • 2 ½ Cups raw grated carrots
  • 1 Cup chopped nuts
  • 1 ½ Cups canned crushed pineapple (drained)
  • 3 Eggs
  • 2 Teaspoons vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour bunt cake pan. Combine all ingredients and mix well with a mixer on medium speed. Pour batter into pan and place in oven. Bake for one hour or test for doneness. When done, remove from oven. Set until cold.


Orange Glaze

  • 3 Cups fresh orange juice
  • 1 Tablespoon grated orange rind
  • 2 Tablespoons corn starch
  • ¼ Cup sugar


Cook glaze until slightly thickened.

Slice cold cake into 3 horizontal layers. Spread with glaze and reassemble layers. Pour remaining glaze on top of cake.

› How to Cook Quinoa

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