Quinoa has gracefully made its way on to our pantry shelves over the past few years. At first, many of us weren’t even sure how to pronounce q-u-i-o-n-i-a, let alone cook it. Now, it’s one of the most blogged about health foods, it’s all over Pinterest and is slowly helping us lose weight and eat much healthier. When cooking quinoa (keenWAH), the ratio of grain to liquid should be 2 to 1. For elevated flavor, we recommend using vegetable or chicken stock instead of water. You can also add a single bay leaf and a pinch of salt to the liquid while it’s cooking for additional flavor.
Discover tasty ways to add this superfood to your meal plan with some of our best quinoa recipes and tips, and learn more about the health benefits of this healthful grain below. Click here for 6 Steps to Perfect Quinoa
For a complete list of superfoods, check out 50 Superfoods, the Ultimate Shopping List.
6 Ways to Increase the Health Benefits of Quinoa:
1. Try a Fiber-Filled Quinoa Lunch
Add one cup of sautéed spinach, one cup of sautéed kale, and 1 cup of diced, cooked sweet potato to your quinoa for a meal packed with fiber. Learn more about why you need more fiber in your diet here.
2. Munch on a Protein-Packed Snack
Cook a cup of quinoa and let it cool down by running it under cold water. Add one tablespoon slivered almonds, two tablespoons sunflower seeds, and one tablespoon pistachios. Drizzle with 1 teaspoon of pure honey and serve a small serving of the quinoa on top of low-fat cottage cheese for an afternoon snack. Yummy! Read about the importance of protein to your workout here.
3. Chow Down with Healthy Teeth
Quinoa is high in phosphorus, with promotes tooth enamel strength. Tahini (ground sesame seeds) is another food that has high phosphorus. Mix cooked quinoa with ¼ cup tahini for an extra flavor boost. Serve the quinoa with grilled chicken for a full meal.
4. Have a Headache-Fighting Feast
Magnesium is a migraine-fighting nutrient that also helps battle cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Quinoa is high in magnesium and is great paired with one cup of shelled, steamed edamame as a side next to 8 ounces of grilled halibut, both also high in magnesium. Learn about the health benefits of beans, like edamame, here.
5. Up Your Iron
Quinoa is also high in iron and would make a great hamburger when added to your usual grass-fed beef. Mix your cooked quinoa with equal parts ground beef and your usual hamburger seasonings. Sear the burger in a non-stick pan and serve with a side salad without bread for a low-carb meal. Read about paleo and other diets here.
6. Go Gluten-Free
Quinoa is a great pasta substitute that caters to Celiacs and those with gluten intolerances. Instead of using penne, mix your cooked quinoa with two cups cooked shrimp and one cup cooked peas. Garnish with one teaspoon lemon juice and one tablespoon of parmesan cheese. For some more tasty gluten-free recipes, click here.
Also, be sure to check out our New Quinoa Cookbook.