Monday, April 22, 2013

Easy Weeknight Dinner: Quinoa Bake

I can't remember who turned me on to quinoa recently, but I want to give them a big hug and kiss. It's my new favorite ingredient. It's so easy to make and is really hearty. It fits right in to a lot of different cuisines.  Here's an easy weeknight recipe that will feed your family all week.

This is a bit spicy, so adjust the seasoning if you want it more mild. I recommend serving it with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkle of cilantro on top. Enjoy!


Mexican Quinoa Bake
Original recipe from here

  • 1 cup quinoa, uncooked
  • 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 cups chicken or veggie stock
  • 1 cup onion, diced (I used two small onions)
  • 1/2 green pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped (I used jarred minced garlic)
  • 1 cup zucchini, cubed (I skipped this because I hate zucchini)
  • 1 15 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 4 ounce can diced green chilis (I used half a jar of pickled jalapeños)
  • 1 28 ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 lime, juiced (I used a whole lime)
  • salt
  • 2 cups shredded Monterey jack cheese (I used what I had in the fridge: some Mexican and some cheddar)
  • Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Spray a 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray. Set aside.
  • Place the quinoa in a fine mesh strainer and rinse thoroughly with cool water. Drain. In a medium saucepan, heat 2 teaspoons olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the quinoa and cook, stirring, for about one minute. The quinoa should begin to dry out and pop a bit. 
  • Add the stock. Stir and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down to low and cook, covered, for 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and let stand, covered for 5 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and peppers and cook, stirring occasionally until soft, about 7 minutes. Add garlic and zucchini (if using) and cook 3 more minutes. If using jarred garlic, only cook for one more minute.
  • Fluff the quinoa with a fork and place it in a large bowl. Add onion mixture, beans, green chilis, tomatoes, corn, cumin, oregano, chili powder, lime juice and salt to taste. Mix thoroughly and transfer to prepared baking dish.
  • Bake 30 minutes, top with cheese and bake 10 minutes more or until melted and just beginning to brown.
  • Place under broiler for one or two minutes to brown and crisp cheese.


  1. This is my favorite quinoa recipe -- Fried "Rice" made with quinoa. It can be made with whatever veggies you like and sometimes we add chicken. Yum!

    1. That sounds awesome! Can't wait to try it!