Spicy Quinoa with Veggies

Hello everyone!

Since the weather doesn’t seem to know if it should stay in winter or switch permanently in the spring, I propose a recipe that you can decline in multiple ways. You can eat it warm, immediately after cooking it, or cooled down at room temperature. It will make a healthy and nourishing main course with a raw vegetables salad. It is also great served as a side for your barbecues and summer picnics.

This recipe is the result of my interpretation of the vegetable rice traditionally served in Mexican restaurants. As I was unhappy with the various recipes I found on the Internet, I ended up creating my own variation. Yes, the title of my post is correct: it is indeed a quinoa based recipe, not rice! I created this variation one day when I had already cut all the vegetables, and I realised I did not have rice and fresh tomatoes at home. I substitutes the missing ingredients with quinoa and tomato concentrate, without being convinced at all by the swap. To my pleasant surprise, the result proved to be much better than the version with rice and fresh tomatoes!

I cook this quick and easy dish when I want to eat a tasty and comforting meal without spending too much time in the kitchen: apart from cutting vegetables, it is as easy as cooking rice! This recipe also saved me several times I had committed to cook for a lot of people, and had no time to prepare anything complicated.

As it is made with quinoa, this dish is digestible and full of nutrients. Indeed, quinoa has a high iron content – 1.85 mg of iron per 20 g of quinoa. It also contains zinc, vitamin B2 and high quality vegetable proteins. As it is gluten-free, quinoa is an excellent alternative to wheat, rye, barley and spelt for those who are gluten intolerant.

Serve your spicy quinoa with avocado drizzled with lime juice, you’ll see everybody will love it!

Serves 4

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 4 spring onions
  • 4 carrots
  • 2 bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup peas, cooked
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp cumin, ground
  • 1 tsp Cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped


  1. Wash the quinoa thoroughly.
  2. In a sauce pan, heat the rapeseed oil on medium heat.
  3. Finely chop the onions, carrots and bell peppers. Add into the sauce pan. Sauté for 5 minutes.
  4. Add water, salt and spices. Increase heat to high and bring to the boil.
  5. Add quinoa and tomato paste. Decrease heat to medium.
  6. Once the water has evaporated and is at the same level as the quinoa, cover and lower heat to low. Allow to cook for 10 more minutes.
  7. Take the pan off the heat. Add peas and olive oi. Sprinkle with fresh coriander.
  8. Serve immediately or allow to cool completely before refrigerating.


See you soon and bon appétit!




Ogungbenle HN. Nutritional evaluation and functional properties of quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa) flour. Int J Food Sci Nutr 2003 March;54(2):153-8.

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