How to Cook Quinoa

So many people are aiming to be healthy nowadays, and I believe one of the best ways to impart more nutrients is by choosing options that are the least processed, natural and will have the most nutrients.

Quinoa is an amazing gluten free seed that when cooked becomes soft and fluffy, similar to couscous. It has more protein then any other grain you can find, and is packed with fiber, vitamins, minerals, and so much more. I find that this product is an amazing substitute for pasta’s and rice in any dish. You can even eat it cold on salads, or hot as a side or main dish. The possibilities are endless incorporating quinoa into your diet!


So, the question is. How in the world do I cook this?! I have mustered up a full proof method over the years for a perfectly cooked, flavor packed method of cooking quinoa. Try this and you will never cook your quinoa by the package directions ever again!

The Process:

Before I mention the “ingredients” I want to make note that this recipe is completely interchangeable, and what matters most is the method and steps in which you cook the Quinoa. The flavors are really up to you!

  1. Toast the Quinoa : Heat an empty medium pot over the stove, pour in your dry Quinoa. Stir for about 2 minutes and allow the seed to toast lightly and take on a nutty flavor. Once done, remove from the pot and set aside until later.
  2. Create the Infused Oil : In the same pot, pour about 3-4 tbs of any kind of oil you would like. ( I use Olive oil, and a touch of white truffle oil.) Next, add the ingredients you choose to infuse the oil with into the pot. ( I use about a 1/4 of a white onion, & 2 garlic cloves.) Stir your ingredients and allow the aromas, and flavor to infuse the oil for about a minute or two.
  3. Infuse the Quinoa : Once the oil is ready, turn heat down to low & pour your dry toasted quinoa back into the pot and stir it into the oil for about a minute.
  4. Add Liquid & Simmer : Pour your liquid of choice into the pot and stir. Put lid on and simmer your mixture very low. You want the quinoa to cook gently. Cook for about 15 minutes, checking every few minutes until you see the quinoa has soaked up most of the liquid.
  5. Complete Cooking : The water should be just about cooked out, take off the heat and let sit aside with lid on to finish cooking on it’s own. ( Note: If the quinoa is cooked too long on heat it will become gummy and mushy and could potentially burn. Be gentle in cooking, letting off the heat in the last cooking minutes will allow it to slowly cook, keep its shape and become fluffy.)
  6. Fluff with a fork and serve hot or cold!

Suggested Ingredients & Ratios :

  • 1 Cup of Quinoa
  • 2 Cups of liquid (any kind of stock, feel free to use water but stock imparts alot more flavor)
  • 1/4 White onion, chopped finely.
  • 2 Cloves of garlic, chopped finely

Other flavor infusing ideas : Add Fresh Herbs such as basil, oregano, cilantro, sage. Or use shallot, fresh ginger, lemon rind & juice, crushed red pepper, any type of hot peppers, butter. Get creative!

Looking for a creative way to use Quinoa? Check out these recipes below!

Spring Quinoa Salad

Grilled Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

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