Quinoa and Corn

4 Feb

I feel like quinoa has become really popular all of the sudden. I first heard about it from a coworker at my previous job and her description was that it was kind of like a super nutritious version of couscous. We sat in the office kitchen and struggled over how to pronounce it – QUI – NO – A? Nope. KEEN – WA we learned.

We thought quinoa was a whole grain, but I recently learned that it’s really a seed and is related to leafy greens like spinach and Swiss chard. It’s often prepared as you would prepare whole grains like rice or barley. What’s unique and cool about quinoa is that it is a complete protein, meaning that it includes all nine essential amino acids.

My  aunt gave me a great recipe for quinoa and corn, which I love. I also found a similar recipe in The Really Whole Food Cookbook. I kind of mixed the two recipes together, and came up with this combo, which I think is just perfect.


1 Tbsp olive oil

2 cups frozen corn

1/2 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp cayenne (or more if you prefer spicy)

1 small chopped onion

1 chopped garlic clove

1 cup uncooked quinoa

1 8oz can tomato sauce

shredded cheddar cheese


Rinse the quinoa with water and then combine with 1 and 3/4 cups water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes, until water is absorbed. Remove from heat and let stand.

Meanwhile, cook the onion with the olive oil in a skillet. When onion is getting soft, add corn. Stir well and then add garlic, cumin and cayenne and stir completely. Saute for 4 or 5 minutes.

Add the cooked quinoa to the corn/onion mixture and stir together, adding in the can of tomato sauce.


Spoon the mixture into a square pan. Top with shredded cheese and bake for 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and wonderful. Enjoy!



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