Everyday Vegan Cooking

Vegan Recipes for Everyday Meals

Quinoa Dish with Herbs and Steamed Vegetables Cooked in One Pot

Quinoa is high in protein content, low in fat and is the perfect substitute for rice or pasta dishes. You can serve it plain, with grilled or steamed vegetables, mixed with raw veggies and herbs or with your favorite pasta sauce. I often hear people complaining about how hard it is to cook Quinoa, how sometimes they get quinoa porridge and how sometimes it is under cooked and that sometimes it is even bitter. In this post I’ll explain the various ways to cook quinoa that will yield results that will be delicate and perfectly fluffy. I will also explain how you can make a delicious quinoa dish in one pot with about 5 minutes of preparation time.

How to cook the perfect quinoa?

There are many ways to cook quinoa that will yield good results:

  1. Cook it like you would cook pasta – boil water, season with salt, add the quinoa, lower the heat and cook for about 12 minutes until it reaches satisfactory texture. Drain and use in your favorite recipe.
  2. Cook it like you would cook rice – measure out 1 cup quinoa and 2 cups liquid, rinse the quinoa in a fine mesh strainer, fry the quinoa for a minute in oil, add liquid and some salt bring to boil and cook for 15 minutes. Leave the lid covered for another 5 minutes.
  3. The method I use in this post’s suggested recipe – measure out 1 cup quinoa and 2 cups liquid, rinse the quinoa in a fine mesh strainer – place the quinoa and the liquid in a pot. Bring to a boil. Lower the heat and cook for 10 minutes, Leave the lid covered for additional 20 minutes.

It is important to rinse the quinoa as it has a natural coating called Saponin, which tastes a little bitter or soapy. rinsing under running water will help you remove this coating and the quinoa will not be bitter.

How to make quinoa that will actually taste good?

  1. Cook with vegetable stock instead of water – Well, almost any recipe that calls for adding water will benefit from adding vegetable broth instead, this is also the case with quinoa.
  2. Add some diced vegetables and herbs to the cooking water – Since I don’t always have  vegetable broth ready to use, I usually add to the water 1 clove of garlic, some chopped parsley and even some diced celery and carrots – these are the staples in any vegetable soup and will enrich the flavor of your quinoa.
  3. Add salt – about 1/2 of a teaspoon for each cup of dry quinoa.

Quinoa Dish with Herbs and steamed vegetables cooked in one pot

I usually make a variation of this recipe as a lunch to take to work. It doesn’t require a lot of preparation time (perhaps 5-10 minutes) and the overall process takes about 30 minutes, so it’s the perfect way to make sure I have a healthy and nutritious warm meal at work.

Ingredients:

1 cup of quinoa – washed

2 cups of water or vegetable stock

1/2 bunch of parsley – chopped

1 tomato – diced

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup of broccoli florets

4 leaves of kale, washed and teared into bite size pieces

Roughly chopped chives (optional)

Directions:

1. Place the quinoa, water, parsley, tomato and salt in a tall cooking pot. We would like the pot to be at least 4 times taller than the volume of the quinoa as the boiled quinoa tend to boil over the top of lower pots.

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2. Put the lid and bring to a boil (about 2 minutes)

3. As you see the steam coming out of the lid, reduce the heat to low medium and put a timer for 10 minutes.

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4. Once the timer rings, place the kale, brocooli and chive on top of the partially cooked quinoa. This is how we are going to steam the kale and broccoli. You can squeeze some lemon on top and sprinkle some salt if you’d like.

In this stage, the quinoa is only partially cooked, the rest of the cooking process will be only steaming

In this stage, the quinoa is only partially cooked, the rest of the cooking process will be only steaming

Add the broccoli and the Kale and Cover with a lid for 20 minutes of steaming

Add the broccoli and the Kale and Cover with a lid for 20 minutes of steaming

5. Turn off the heat source! Place the lid back and put the timer for additional 20 minutes (of steaming).

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6. It is ready. Serve with some tahini, chopped cilantro/parsley, preshly cut tomatoes. I also like to dice a slice of lemon and add it to the mix.

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Tips and Variations:

– Cooking with vegetable stock instead of water will yield even tastier Quinoa

– Try adding raw vegetables like diced zucchini, celery, carrots, tomatoes, fennel, yams etc’ during the first phase. Or any other herb (Step 1 above).

– Try adding spinach, kale, cilantro, parsley to the steaming process (Step 4 above).

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Quinoa Dish with Herbs and steamed vegetables cooked in one pot
 
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I usually make a variation of this recipe as a lunch to take to work. It doesn't require a lot of preparation time (perhaps 5-10 minutes) and the overall process takes about 30 minutes, so it's the perfect way to make sure I have a healthy and nutritious warm meal at work.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup of quinoa - washed
  • 2 cups of water or vegetable stock
  • ½ bunch of parsley - chopped
  • 1 tomato - diced
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup of broccoli florets
  • 4 leaves of kale, washed and teared into bite size pieces
  • Roughly chopped chives (optional)
Instructions
  1. Place the quinoa, water, parsley, tomato and salt in a tall cooking pot. We would like the pot to be at least 4 times taller than the volume of the quinoa as the boiled quinoa tend to boil over the top of lower pots.
  2. Put the lid and bring to a boil (about 2 minutes)
  3. As you see the steam coming out of the lid, reduce the heat to low medium and put a timer for 10 minutes.
  4. Once the timer rings, place the kale, brocooli and chive on top of the partially cooked quinoa. This is how we are going to steam the kale and broccoli. You can squeeze some lemon on top and sprinkle some salt if you'd like.
  5. Turn off the heat source! Place the lid back and put the timer for additional 20 minutes (of steaming).
  6. It is ready. Serve with some tahini, chopped cilantro/parsley, preshly cut tomatoes. I also like to dice a slice of lemon and add it to the mix.
Tips and Variations:
- Cooking with vegetable stock instead of water will yield even tastier Quinoa
- Try adding raw vegetables like diced zucchini, celery, carrots, tomatoes, fennel, yams etc' during the first phase. Or any other herb (Step 1 above).
- Try adding spinach, kale, cilantro, parsley to the steaming process (Step 4 above).

 

1 Comment

  1. Perfect. The best meal I’ve ever taken to work. So easy to prepare in the morning. I also grated some carrots in the quinoa and it turned out lovely!

    Thank you!

    Cynthia R.

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