Check out our favorite delicious and easy quinoa recipes, from enchiladas to quinoa salad recipes to vegan chili. You’re sure to find a favorite!
In just a few years, quinoa has become a majorly popular food. When Alex and I first started A Couple Cooks eight years ago, quinoa was relatively new. This supergrain is now a staple in our weekly meals, and it’s super delicious too. Over the years we’ve created all sorts of quinoa recipes. So we thought we’d share our top 10 easy quinoa recipes with you! All these quinoa meals and dishes have become family favorites in our house, and we hope they will in yours too!
Quinoa (KEEN-wah) is one of the world’s most perfect foods (according to some) due to its high nutritional content. It’s actually a seed, not a grain, which makes it naturally gluten free. Compared to other vegetables, quinoa is high in protein, calcium, Vitamin B, and iron. Fun fact: apparently the Incas thought it was sacred, because eating it regularly appeared to provide a long, healthy life. Because of all these benefits, we love making quinoa recipes!
How to cook quinoa
There are a few ways to cook quinoa. Over the years, Alex and I have messed up quinoa numerous times: cooking it too fast so it’s hard and crunchy, or overcooking it so it’s mushy. I will say, how to cook quinoa is not a simple matter! We have two methods we like to use to cook quinoa:
- Perfect Quinoa on the Stovetop This is our master recipe for cooking quinoa on the stovetop and the correct quinoa to water ratio. It takes about 25 to 30 minutes, and it requires a little baby sitting to make sure the liquid is cooking out evenly, but it’s mostly hands off.
- Instant Pot Quinoa (Pressure Cooker) If you have a pressure cooker, you can use it to make quinoa! It takes about 16 minutes and is almost totally hands off! This is the method we’ve started to use more often, since we have an Instant Pot. Get it: 6 Quart Instant Pot
And now…our top 10 easy quinoa recipes!
Looking for more easy quinoa recipes?
Outside of these featured quinoa meals, here are a few more quinoa dishes that we love:
- Cherry Quinoa Chocolate Bark
- Mexican Quinoa Recipe
- Stress Relieving Quinoa Avocado Salad
- Quinoa with Roasted Vegetables
- Summer Quinoa Salad with Corn
- Quinoa Bean Salad with Lemon
- Crispy Quinoa Granola
- Vegan Quinoa Salad with Snap Peas
- Pesto Quinoa Recipe
- Quinoa Stuffed Grilled Zucchini
- Grilled Eggplant with Herbed Quinoa
- Stuffed Acorn Squash with Quinoa and Herbs
These simple quinoa tacos are a delicious vegetarian taco recipe, featuring a spiced quinoa filling, bell pepper slaw, and spicy sour cream!
- 1 cup quinoa
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 3 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon each: cumin and paprika
- 1 teaspoon each: garlic powder, onion powder, and oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
- 2 green onions
- 1 lime
- 1 bell peppers (we used 1/2 red and 1/2 orange)
- 4 cups baby greens
- Sour cream (+ a few shakes of hot sauce, as desired), or Vegan Sour Cream or cashew cream for vegan*
- Feta cheese crumbles, optional
- Pickled red onions, optional
- 10 to 12 corn tortillas
- Cook the quinoa: In a dry pan over medium heat, add the dry quinoa and toast it over medium heat, stirring frequently. After a few minutes you’ll start to hear a popping sound; continue stirring until the quinoa just starts to brown and smell toasty, about 3 to 4 minutes total.
- Immediately transfer the quinoa to a fine mesh strainer and rinse it in the sink. Return it to the pot and add the vegetable broth and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt. Bring it to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Cover the pot and simmer where the broth is just bubbling for about 15 to 20 minutes, until the broth has been completely absorbed. (Check by pulling back the quinoa with a fork to see if broth remains.) Turn off the heat and let sit with the lid on to steam for 5 minutes, then fluff the quinoa with a fork.
- Prepare the toppings: While the quinoa cooks, make a quick bell pepper slaw: Thinly slice the peppers, then cut them in half. Place them in a bowl and mix with 1 tablespoon lime juice and a few pinches kosher salt, and allow to stand until serving. If serving with spicy sour cream, stir in few shakes hot sauce to taste.
- Finish the quinoa taco filling: When quinoa is done, melt the coconut oil in large nonstick pan over medium heat. Add cooked quinoa and stir to combine. Add the cumin, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt and stir. Then cook without stirring for about 5 minutes or until the bottom starts to get crispy. Remove from the heat and stir in 1 tablespoon lime juice and green onions. (Add any remaining lime juice to the bell pepper slaw.)
- Serve the quinoa tacos: Warm the tortillas, or char them by placing a tortilla on an open gas flame on medium for a few seconds per side, flipping with tongs, until slightly blackened and warm. Top the tortillas with the greens, quinoa filling, bell peppers, pickled onions, sour cream and feta crumbles. Serve immediately. If desired, serve with a side of Homemade Refried Beans or Refried Black Beans.
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: Mexican Inspired
Keywords: Quinoa recipes, Quinoa, Easy quinoa recipes
Last updated: January 2020
About the Authors
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.