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The Best Quinoa I’ve Ever Made

October 22, 2012

A big claim, I know.

Remember back when most of us didn’t even know what quinoa was?  I think it took me four years just to figure out how to pronounce it, let alone eat it.

But I think you can argue that a food has gone mainstream when you have male contestants talking about it on The Bachelorette.  (side-note: RIP Emily and Jef with one F.  Shoulda chosen Arie, girl.  When given the choice between a former Mormon water salesman and a hot racecar driver, I think it’s a pretty safe bet to choose the racecar driver.)



It’s one of those foods I eat because I know it’s good for me, not because it tastes good.

Oh, it doesn’t taste bad, mind you.  I just don’t think I’ve ever said, “Wow! This quinoa is amazing!”

Until this weekend.

This quinoa really was good.  I don’t know why it’s so good, because the recipe is super-simple.  It just…is.

Super Easy, Super Delicious Quinoa

1/2 onion, finely chopped

3 dates (pit removed), chopped

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 cup quinoa

2 cups water


In a small skillet, heat olive oil.  Add onions and cook for 3-4 minutes, until starting to soften.  Season generously with garlic salt.

In a separate saucepan, combine quinoa and water.  Bring to a boil.  Add cooked onions and dates, and simmer for about 15 minutes, until water is absorbed.  Season with additional garlic salt if necessary.

On Friday night, we used this recipe to stuff an acorn squash:


Along with chunks of bleu cheese.

And then tonight, we had it as a quinoa salad with butternut squash cubes, roasted chickpeas, and more of the cheese. 




The onions and dates kind of melt into the quinoa during the simmering, so it doesn’t have big chunks of either, but just has a really nice balance between sweet and savory. 

You will rarely hear me rave about quinoa, but seriously—this recipe is worth raving over.

Happy Sunday night!       

8 Comments leave one →
  1. October 22, 2012 3:12 am

    see, i’ve totally raved about quinoa before – but it’s got to have lots of garlic. this actually sounds like a fabulous recipe!

  2. October 22, 2012 11:52 am

    Sounds great with the roasted chickpeas! I love added little bits of sweetness to grains – will have to try dates!

  3. October 22, 2012 1:59 pm

    That roasted chickpea concoction sounds perfect! For me, it’s all about what you add to quinoa that makes or breaks it. It’s like rice for me when it comes to flavors…alone it’s meh, with some tasty additions it can knock your socks off!

  4. October 22, 2012 3:47 pm

    Mmm I love quinoa actually! I’m not sure about Blue cheese. For some strange reason I’m scared to try it!

  5. October 22, 2012 5:24 pm

    Yummy. Love quinoa. It’s so great for stuffing other veggies with too. I have a kabocha at home so I may very well make quinoa with kabocha and chickpeas tonight. Thank you for the inspiration!

  6. Patti permalink
    October 22, 2012 8:23 pm

    This looks tasty. Do you suppose I could substitute raisins or craisins for the dates?

  7. October 23, 2012 2:23 am

    This looks amazing and simple, love the addition of dates!

  8. October 24, 2012 4:18 am

    Sold! Definitely trying this ASAP

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