Quinoa Pilaf recipe is a one pot meal where raw quinoa is rinsed and cooked with onions, garlic, carrots, and celery until tender. Then simmered in chicken stock until light and fluffy. And, finally, it is served with cranberries, almonds, raisins, and fresh herbs. Quite similar to Healthy Quinoa Fried "Rice"
Best Quinoa Pilaf Recipe
Quinoa Pilaf can only be called as "Best Quinoa Pilaf" if you follow this recipe as is. Quinoa cooked with ground coriander, smoked paprika, and just a pinch of salt becomes irresistibly good.
Simmered in low sodium chicken stock this Quinoa Pilaf recipe is simply amazing.
The nutty texture of Quinoa when paired with sweet raisins, cranberries, and almonds tastes so good.
Quinoa is the next best thing, if you are choosing to cut out on rice. I eat Quinoa all the time.
You can make recipes like:
- Quinoa Enchilada Casserole
- Quinoa and Black Beans
- Quinoa Stuffed Peppers
- Crock-Pot Black Bean and Quinoa Chili
What is Pilaf in rice pilaf?
Pilaf is a Mediterranean word with Turkish or Persian origins. It's also called Pulao or Pulav or Pilau in some places. Make sure you try: Mediterranean Saffron Pilaf
We've heard the term rice pilaf so many times right. But, often we've wondered the meaning of the word pilaf.
Pilaf is basically, rice that is cooked with onions, garlic, and lots of veggies (carrots, beans, potatoes). And, then topped with raisins, cashews, cranberries, almonds, mint leaves or freshly chopped parsley or freshly chopped cilantro.
What is red quinoa pilaf?
Red Quinoa is easily found in South America. It's also called Inca Red. Red Quinoa has a nuttier taste and tastes something like brown rice. When you cook red quinoa it turns brownish. So basically, if you just substitute white quinoa with red quinoa and keep the recipe same, then what you have is called red quinoa pilaf.
How to Make Quinoa Pilaf?
Step 1: Rinse and Drain Quinoa
Rinse quinoa with tap water and drain.
Step 2: Brown Quinoa with Onions and Garlic
In a saucepan add chopped white onions and minced cloves of garlic. Sauté onions and garlic until fragrant. Add in Quinoa and cook until its slightly tender. Sautéing Quinoa makes it taste better. All the more nuttier.
Step 3: Add in Veggies
Add in your favorite veggies. I like to use chopped carrots and celery. You can add cauliflower or broccoli or green beans or anything else that you like.
Step 4: Add in Spices and Simmer
Go with whatever spices you want. I like to use ground coriander along with smoked paprika, and salt. Sauté lightly. Add in chicken stock. Cover the Lid and simmer until quinoa is perfectly cooked.
Step 5: Fluff Quinoa and add toppings
Fluff Quinoa with a spoon or a fork. Add cranberries, fresh pilaf, almonds, and rose petals.
What to Serve with Quinoa Pilaf?
Wondering what to eat with Quinoa Pilaf? You can eat your Quinoa Pilaf with the following:
- Greens Beans - You can serve your Quinoa Pilaf with a variety of green bean recipes.
- Roasted Broccoli - roasted broccoli can also be an amazing side dish for quinoa pilaf.
- Mashed Potatoes - of course yes. You can eat Quinoa Pilaf with garlic mashed potatoes.
Is Quinoa Pilaf Healthy?
Quinoa Pilaf is super healthy. Quinoa is a super-grain. It's so healthy. Full of Fiber and Protein Quinoa is something that you must include in your diet.
Besides that Quinoa Pilaf is gluten free.
More Healthy Quinoa Recipes
- Cilantro Lime Quinoa
- Mediterranean Quinoa Salad
- Moroccan Chickpea Quinoa Salad
- Southwestern Quinoa Black Bean Salad
Spruce up your Quinoa Pilaf
There are so many ways through which you can add variety to you Quinoa Pilaf recipe.
- Mushrooms - you can make Quinoa Pilaf with Mushrooms. Portobello or button mushrooms would make a good combination.
- Vegetables - you can choose whichever vegetables you like. From onions, carrots, celery to anything else that you like.
- HINT - You can make Quinoa Broccoli Pilaf or quinoa pilaf with butternut squash.
- Spinach - Fresh chopped baby spinach can be easily added to your quinoa pilaf.
- Asparagus - You can also make quinoa asparagus pilaf.
- Herbs and Lemon - If you are looking for an easy way to bring more flavor to your quinoa pilaf you can add in some herbs of your choice and just squeeze in some lemon juice.
- Chicken - I would suggest you use cooked chicken breasts or boneless skinless chicken thighs to make quinoa pilaf with chicken.
- Nuts - Quinoa Pilaf with almonds is quite common. You can add your own variety. Use any kind of nuts that you like.
- HINT - Quinoa Pilaf with Pine Nuts tastes really good.
- Mushrooms and Caramelized Onions - Mushrooms and Caramelized onions makes a great pair. You can add them to your quinoa pilaf. Also try: Mushroom Pizza with Caramelized Onions and Goat Cheese
- Chickpeas or any other beans -You can add cooked chickpeas or any other beans to make Quinoa Pilaf. Quinoa Chickpeas Pilaf is full of plant based protein and tastes amazing.
More Quinoa Recipes
- Black Bean Quinoa Burrito Bowl 🍲
- Black Bean Quinoa Burgers 🍔
- Roasted Mushrooms with Herby Quinoa 🍄
- Cinnamon Apple Quinoa Breakfast Bowls 🥣
- Keto Quinoa Zucchini Muffins
Quinoa pilaf with cranberries and almonds
- 1 cup quinoa
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup onions diced
- 2 tablespoons carrots shredded
- 1 tablespoon celery minced
- salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon ground coriander or garam masala
- 2 cups chicken broth low sodium
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- 2 tablespoons almonds toasted
- 2 tablespoons parsley fresh
- dried rose petals optional for garnish
- Place Quinoa in a mesh strainer. Rinse quinoa thoroughly with tap water. Drain and keep it aside. If you are using pre-washed kind of quinoa then you can skip this step.
- In an another medium saucepan cook onions and garlic with some olive oil. If you want to make it taste richer you can replace olive oil with some butter.
- Add quinoa and sauté lightly until browned about 4-minutes. This is one of the most important steps while you are making Quinoa Pilaf.
- Add in carrots and celery and continue to cook until tender 2-3 minutes.
- Season with salt, pepper, smoked paprika, and ground coriander. Stir in Low Sodium chicken broth.
- Cover the saucepan with a lid and cook on low heat for 20 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed.
- Open the lid and fluff the quinoa with a wooden spatula or a fork. Mix in cranberries, almonds, dried rose petals, and fresh parsley. You can also use pine nuts and raisins.