Protein Power: 7 Ways to Cook with Quinoa

You are here

Protein Power: 7 Ways to Cook with Quinoa

Learn how to sneak the protein and fiber-packed whole grain into everything from soups to smoothies.

Unless you grew up with hippie parents who were regulars at a hole-in-the-wall health-food store, you probably didn’t have a clue about quinoa until recently. Now the superfood’s stocked at big-box retailers, and its amped-up nutrition profile is leaving your go-to grains, like brown rice, in the dust. So, what exactly makes the obscure-sounding protein source so worthy of our attention?

  • Quinoa is the only grain that’s a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids, says Jackie Newgent, R.D., author of 1,000 Low-Calorie Recipes. It’s an ideal protein source for vegetarians and vegans.
  • Quinoa packs a filling combo of 8g of protein and 6g of fiber per cooked cup.
  • The grain’s also a good source of iron. One cooked cup takes care of about 15% of your daily requirement.
  • Quinoa is a super-versatile cooking ingredient. Served hot or cold, the grain comes in three varieties: white, red, and black. White’s the most popular and has a very mild flavor, while red and black quinoa taste nuttier and earthier.

To cook quinoa, the general rule is to add 1 cup of dried quinoa to 2 cups liquid inside a pot. Boil, cover, and let simmer for about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit for about 5 minutes.

Now that the basics are out of the way, you’re ready to work the supergrain into your meals and snacks, and we’ve got seven ways to help you do it.


Want more Men's Fitness?

Sign Up for our newsletters now.

more galleries