quinoa

5 Simple Tricks to Cook Quinoa Perfectly

5 Simple Tricks to Cook Quinoa Perfectly

Quinoa is a staple in my kitchen. It’s come a long way from health foods to the mainstream, and makes a great substitute for starchy pastas, and even rice. I looooove it so much that I usually incorporate it into breakfast instead of cereal, make it part of a healthy lunch alongside grilled vegetables, or even eat it as a delicious dessert. This nutritional powerhouse is a blank slate that will take on the flavors of any ingredient, so it makes it easy to customize it even for the pickiest eaters.

Today I wanted to share with you some of my quinoa cooking tips. A lot of people I know have told me that quinoa just tastes awful due to the bitterness and texture. This is probably because they have either cooked it wrong, or simply didn’t flavor it well.

1. Use a Rice Cooker

One trick I use to getting a perfectly cooked quinoa that is still “al dente” and not too mushy or crunchy for that matter is to use….a rice cooker! Yes, it’s seriously the easiest way to prepare these little seeds.

2. Remember Your Ratios

Just make sure to keep the proportions as follows: 1 part quinoa to 2 parts liquid

3. Rinse the Seeds Before Cooking

The second trick to bringing out more flavor, and eliminating the bitterness is to vigorously rinse the seeds before cooking in a mesh strainer (this removes the natural coating called saponin which makes it bitter).

4. Toast the Seeds in Olive Oil

Once you rise the seeds, dry them, and toast in a saucepan on medium-high heat in a little bit of olive oil for 1-2 minutes to bring out the flavor during cooking.

5. Cook in Flavored Broth Instead of Water

Try cooking your quinoa in a delicious broth instead of water (ideally low-sodium). My favorite one is the Organic Mushroom Broth by Pacific brands which I usually can pick up at Whole Foods.

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