Friday, March 13, 2015

Quinoa Pilaf

I am surprised that I haven't posted this before. Quinoa pilaf, with vegetables and all the works, is a complete meal, and oh-so-healthy and delicious! Best of all, it is so easy to prepare, and is ready in just under 30 minutes!

Quick nutrition facts about quinoa: 

*Guten free
*Low Glycemic Index (diabetics- take note!) 
*Provides all 8 amino acids, thereby becoming a complete protein 
*Zero Cholesterol
*Zero Sodium
*Rich in Dietary Fiber
*Rich in Iron, Phosphorus, and Riboflavin (Vitamin B)


Closer look 


1. Quinoa- 2 cups

2. Leek- 1 cup 

3. Garlic- 4-5 crushed

4. Ginger- 1 inch grated

5. Carrot- 1 big, chopped per liking

6. Tomato- 1 medium, chopped

7. Kale- 1/2 bunch 

8. Cumin- 1/2 tsp

9. Turmeric- a pinch

10. Cooking oil- 3-4 tsp

11. Salt and pepper per taste

12. Water to cook- 4 cups


*4-5 Thai green chilies for some kick

*Garam Masala powder- 1/2 tsp  

Note: Any and every vegetable will work well in this recipe. 


If you get pre-washed, ready to use quinoa, you are good to go. Else, give it a good rinse in cold water before cooking, to get rid of its natural bitterness. 

1. Put 3-4 tsp of oil into a pot or pan, get the heat going. Splutter 1/2 tsp of cumin seeds. 

2. Add leek, garlic, and ginger into this, followed by a pinch of turmeric powder, and quickly stir fry for 3-5 minutes. Then add chopped carrot, tomato, and any other vegetable that you might be using. Save the greens such as swiss chard, kale, collard greens, spinach, etc to be added towards the end. 

3. After 3-5 minutes of stir frying, add quinoa to this, and mix everything together. Also add salt and pepper per taste, as well as the chilies and garam masala powder, if using. And then add 4 cups of water. Quinoa:Water= 1:2 Give it all a good stir. Also give it a quick taste, and adjust salt pepper etc if need be. Cover and bring it all to a boil. 

4. Once it starts boiling (about 3 minutes on high), lower flame, and simmer away covered for 15-20 minutes. At about 10 minutes, add the greens, and cover again and continue cooking. At the end of 20 minutes, all the water will have evaporated and the quinoa will have cooked to perfection. 

5. Garnish with cashew nuts and fresh cilantro. Enjoy! 

Deliciously Healthy Quinoa Pilaf

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