How To Cook Quinoa Perfectly Every Time

When cooked properly, quinoa is one of the most delicious and versatile grains out there. Because of its relatively neutral flavor, quinoa’s subtle nutty and earthy undertones are the perfect canvas for just about any dish.

While it’s tricky to say [KEEN-wa], it’s even trickier to cook properly. Hopefully some of these helpful hints will come in handy next time you decide to cook up some of this fabulous stuff.

I like my quinoa to have some bite to it, and when cooked al dente it offers some killer texture to a dish. The common ratio of grain to water is 1-to-2 (1 cup uncooked quinoa to 2 cups water). I like to measure out just shy of 2 cups of water. That way, there's less of a chance of my quinoa getting mushy.

Also use every opportunity to add extra flavor! Before I cook any savory quinoa I love to sauté some shallots and garlic in some olive oil. Then I add my quinoa and toast it for a few minutes to bring out it’s nuttiness before adding my liquid.

Watch the video below to see how it's done!

Here are some more cool quinoa recipe ideas:

  • Quinoa Tabouleh: Sub out the couscous for cooked quinoa.
  • Quinoa Risotto: Cook your quinoa as you would Arborio rice.
  • Toasted Crunchy Quinoa: Dry your quinoa out in the oven by spreading cooked quinoa on a sheet pan, drizzle with olive oil, and baked at 350°F for 10 to 15 minutes, tossing frequently. Crunchy Quinoa makes for a great salad topper, or a beautiful textured element of a fish or poultry dish.
  • Sweet Quinoa: Boil some almond milk and cook your quinoa as you would oatmeal. Add fresh berries, cinnamon, and maple syrup for an awesome breakfast dish.
  • Quinoa Crumble: Roast some fruit and top it with some crunchy toasted quinoa and brown sugar for a unique streusel topping.

For more healthy cooking tips, check out my video course The Complete Guide to Gluten-Free Cooking.

Cover Photo Credit: Shutterstock

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Alex Thomopoulos

Alex Thomopoulos is a stand-up comic-turned-chef. After more than two years of performing comedy in Los Angeles, she found her calling in the kitchen and, after enrolling in the International Culinary School at the Art Institute, started her own catering company.Her healthy and flavor-packed cooking style has made her a fan favorite among thousands of home cooks and food lovers looking for healthy options that don’t sacrifice taste.In her newest video course, The Complete Guide To Gluten-Free Eating, she shows you how to whip up amazing gluten-free dishes.
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