Native to South America and once a staple foods of the Incas, Quinoa, pronounced ‘Keenwah’ is all the rage at the moment. You have probably seen it in some of my recipes such as Mixed Quinoa Salad and Tomato Quinoa salad. A couple of big reasons why I use it often are its high in protein (great for vegos or vegans) and its gluten free, this is because it is not actually a grain but a seed. There are however so many other juicy benefits, so much so that some call it a super food. Here are some of the amazing benefits of Quinoa.
- High in protein (12-18% – that’s higher than meat!
- Contains all 9 essential amino acids making it a complete protein
- Low GI
- Gluten Free
- High in fibre
- Has more iron than meat
- Rich source of B vitamins, calcium, magnesium and vitamin E
- Lowers cholesterol
Quinoa comes in a few varieties. My fav at the moment is the mixed variety which contains the white, red and black variety.
To prepare quinoa you need to rinse it first as it contains a bitter coating called saponin. Once rinsed bring 2 parts water to the boil. Reduce the heat, add one part quinoa and simmer until all the water is absorbed stirring a few times. Drain through a strainer.
Quinoa can be a meal on its own or you can add it to a green salad to boost its weight. It is similar to couscous so can also substitute this or rice. What is your favourite quinoa recipe?