Quinoa Recipes

Quinoa fields in PeruI just returned from an Exploring Spirit Retreat I facilitated to Peru.  While there, I was able to see up close the beautiful ancient grain of quinoa, which I have eaten for years but never seen in its plant form.  In honor of my recent trip, I want to share with you two recipes that includes this grain which is really more of a seed.

Quinoa is an excellent, high protein grain that has a very balanced effect upon the three doshas or life forces.  It is particularly good for Vata, the force made up of the elements air and ether.  Quinoa combines well with basmati rice to make a complete food and many find the combination more pleasant to the taste than quinoa alone.

Peruvian Quinoa Stew

  • 1/2 c. quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 2 c. vegetable stock, divided
  • 1 Tbsp ghee
  • 1 c. sliced leeks, washed
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 1/2 red pepper, diced
  • 1 zucchini, quarter slices
  • 14 oz tomatoes, canned or fresh diced preferably
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. chili powder (less to decrease pitta)
  • 1/2 tsp. coriander
  • 3/4 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 pinch cayenne
  • 1/3 c. chopped cilantro
Combine quinoa and 1 cup of stock in saucepan.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and cook until moisture has been absorbed and the quinoa is tender, about 10-12 minutes.  Fluff with a fork and set aside.
Heat ghee or oil in a stockpot.  Add the leeks, celery, carrots and pepper and saute over medium heat for 4 minutes.  Add the zucchini and saute for another 3-4 minutes until all the vegetables are medium soft.  Add the tomatoes and broth (plus extra water if you would like a thinner consistency) and simmer 2 minutes then add the quinoa and spices and simmer for 5 minutes.  Serve warm topped with the chopped cilantro.

Rice Cooker Quinoa Pilaf

  • 1/3 c. white basmati rice
  • 1/3 c. quinoa
  • 1 /2 c. water
  • 1 Tbsp. dried cranberries
  • 1 Tbsp. pumpkin seeds
  • 1 Tbsp. unsweetened dried coconut
  • 3 cardamom pods
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • pinch of black pepper
Rinse the grains and place in rice cooker pot.  Add the remaining ingredients and push start.  When finished the rice cooker will automatically switch to the warming cycle.  Enjoy this for breakfast topped with a teaspoon of ghee, or for lunch and dinner as a side dish.

Copyright ©  2012 Ayurveda Wellness, Jamie Durner