Herbed Quinoa

2 Comments 15 February 2013

As penance for the Vanilla Bean Rice Pudding this past Wednesday, I thought we’d offer y’all fantastic folks something healthy to turn it all around. We tried quinoa for the first time not that long ago and I still reflect on how unsuited that pudding and I were. Sis Blogging Partner liked it a lot, but I still have memories of how my taste buds recoiled at the strong, nutty nut-tasticness combined with the sweetness from…all the sweet stuff in it. I got to thinking maybe quinoa would taste better in a savory incarnation. And so I alighted to one of my favorite cooking inspirations and tried this recipe. With quionoa all the rage, I was thinking surely we could get along.

Herbed Quinoa-1

Hello, Quinoa. We meet again. Try to make me like you this time, m’kay?

Herbed Quinoa-2

Today, Quinoa’s friends – Basil, Parsley, Thyme and Lemon Zest have come along to help. They add a lot of flavor, partially because they’re awesome stuff, but mostly cuz there is a crap ton of them in this recipe. When in doubt, pile on the goodness!

Herbed Quinoa-3

Pour your small army of quinoa into a saucepan.

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Now add taste amplifiers like chicken broth and lemon juice to it. Time for a swim, Quinoa!

Herbed Quinoa-5

In the meantime put aaaaalllll those chopped herbs, lemon zest and more lemon juice in a bowl. Whisk in some olive oil. Voila! You’ve made a dressing.

So let’s review. Throw the quinoa in with some broth and lemon juice. Throw together a ridiculously simple dressing.

People, I think we have the supreme makings of an Easy Recipe. Bhold it’s glory! Er, below!

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Isn’t it kinda purty?

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I think the only thing we’d do differently next time is possibly a little less lemon juice. It’s pretty tart at first, although once the flavors and quinoa have mingled a little longer and it comes closer to room temp, that does lessen a little in intensity.

As skeptical as I’ve been about quinoa, this is actually a really refreshing side dish with its bright flavors. The quinoa itself cooked down a little more this time, but it still maintains a pleasant chewy texture. I do believe we have the makings of a remake recipe!

Herbed Quinoa

from Giada De Laurentiis via Food Network

Prep Time: 10 minutes    Cook Time: 15 minutes     Level: Easy    Serves: 4

For the Quinoa:

  • 2 3/4 cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 cups quinoa

For the dressing:

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the quinoa: In a medium saucepan, add the chicken stock, lemon juice and quinoa. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover the pan and cook until all the liquid is absorbed, about 12 to 15 minutes.

For the dressing: In a small bowl, mix together the olive oil, lemon juice, basil, parsley, thyme, and lemon zest. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Pour the dressing over the quinoa and toss until all the ingredients are coated. Transfer the quinoa to a bowl. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and serve.


This was also slightly too liquidy once done, almost still a little too wet, but this also seemed to lessen as the dish cooled. As for the lemon juice, use less if it seems like it might be too stroing for you. You can always add more in if you prefer.

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- who has written 347 posts on Full Fork Ahead.

Wife, mom, indulgent reader and Day Job Do-er, who occasionally likes to think she can cook. Sometimes she's right, sometimes she's wrong.

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2 Comments so far

  1. Natasha A. says:

    This looks so delicious! I <3 Quinoa so much! Even The Mr. likes. If I ask him if he wants rice or quinoa, he often picks the Q!

  2. christine says:

    I love quinoa.. the rest of my family not as much. I posted a recipe for quinoa breakfast porridge several weeks ago on my blog. It’s my newest go-to hot breakfast!

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