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How to cook perfect quinoa

Updated April 17, 2017

Quinoa is an ancient grain that once again is coming into popular use. Quinoa is thought to have originated in the Andes Mountains of South America. According to the Quinoa Corporation website, it was "known then, and still is known, with respect, as the mother grain". As simple as rice to prepare, with a texture similar to couscous, quinoa is a good substitute for either of those grains in almost any recipe.

Put the quinoa in a bowl and cover it with water to soak for 15 minutes. Do not skip this step or your quinoa will taste bitter once it is cooked.

Pour the quinoa from the bowl into the strainer. Rinse it under cool running water to wash off any remaining starch. Drain well.

Put the quinoa in the cooking pot and add the water and salt.

Bring the water to a boil over high heat. Cover the pot and turn the heat down to medium.

Cook for 15 minutes.

Remove the pot from the heat and allow the quinoa to rest for 5 minutes in the lidded pot.

Fluff with a fork as you would rice. To fluff a cooking grain means to stir it with a fork. Your quinoa is now ready to serve.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • Bowl
  • Fine mesh strainer
  • Pot with a tight-fitting lid
  • Fork
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About the Author

Based in North Carolina, Carol Taber has been writing since 2008. Her work is published on her blog, A Second Cup, and on various other websites. She is currently a features writer for The Wake Weekly and holds a Bachelor of Arts in accounting from the University of New York at Buffalo.