How to Cook Perfect Quinoa, No Matter the Amount | Wholefully

The arrant quinoa is good minutes from the pantry. We show you how to cook quinoa in a way that creates a downy, absolutely tender texture. share this post :
Close view of fluffy quinoa grains in a white bowl. A text overlay reads, "How to Cook Quinoa: Oven and Stove Top."

Quinoa is the darling whole texture of foodies everywhere, and for big reason ! It ’ randomness pack full of nutty flavor and nutriment, and it ’ s a breeze to cook. It ’ sulfur besides super versatile ( side dishes, soups, salads, ohio my ! ) and slowly to find—grab it at any of your local supermarkets .
While quinoa international relations and security network ’ t technically a grain ( it ’ south considered a pseudograin because it ’ s actually a source ), we silent love it here at Wholefully ! Knowing how to cook perfectly downy quinoa every time should be a staple skill in your nourish kitchen, and we ’ re here to teach you how .

Two bowls and a wooden spoon lined up top to bottom and filled with quinoa.

What is quinoa?

Quinoa is a seed that is much used like a grain ( which is why it is often referred to as a “ pseudo-grain ” ). It can be cooked and used in many of the same ways you ’ d use grains like rice or barley—use it as a slope dish, as the establish for grain salads, or to bulk up soups .
Quinoa is naturally gluten-free and is considered a complete protein. Which means it has all the substantive amino acids our bodies need in one individual food. Most sources of complete protein are animal proteins—meat, dairy, and eggs—but quinoa is one of the few plant-based sources of complete protein. In summation to giving your torso the essential amino acids it needs to thrive, quinoa is besides a good source of fiber, magnesium, zinc, B vitamins, and cast-iron .
Four different varieties of quinoa in bowls such as red quinoa, black quinoa, and white quinoa.

Which color quinoa should I use?

Quinoa comes in a compass of colors, and they all taste relatively similar. When you ’ re learning how to cook quinoa, don ’ t let the color of the grain confuse you for a loop. No matter which you choose, you ’ ll end up with delicious, cushy, downy grains !
There are flimsy variations in the cook fourth dimension between the different types of quinoa, but they are minor—only a hour or two offprint white quinoa from trichromatic, bootleg, or red quinoa .

Do you need to pre-rinse quinoa?

not necessarily. Rinsing your quinoa removes the saponins that naturally coat quinoa. These saponins can be bitter, so many people prefer to rinse their quinoa for a meek spirit .
I love quinoa ’ south nutty, earthy taste and don ’ triiodothyronine mind the flimsy bitterness, specially when I ’ megabyte cooking a savory cup of tea. So I don ’ t constantly pre-rinse .
however, this one is up to you, so let your taste buds decide. Some packages come labeled as “ pre-rinsed, ” so you can skip this measure because they ’ ve already done the heavily work for you !
If you decide to rinse your quinoa, set it in a big pot and cover it with water. Swish the quinoa around to dislodge any debris, then drain over a finely engage strainer .
Cooked quinoa in a pot topped with butter.
Close view quinoa grains.

Should I cook my quinoa on the stove or in the oven?

Both versions have their advantages, so it ’ s a matter of personal predilection. Whichever method acting you choose, you ’ re guaranteed to end up with downy, perfective quinoa every time !
Stovetop quinoa alone takes 15 minutes to make. This is the way to go if you have a recipe that requires cooked quinoa and don ’ t already have some on hired hand .
Cooking quinoa in the oven takes longer—roughly 35 minutes—but the advantage to using the oven is you can cook up a whole bunch at once. This is the best choice if you ’ re looking to meal homework and freeze your quinoa for later .

How to cook quinoa in the oven

Most people who learn how to cook quinoa were taught to use the stovetop method. however, oven quinoa is the fluffiest, softest quinoa you ’ ll ever make—and it ’ mho about entirely hands-off. It ’ mho besides ace easy to learn how to cook quinoa in the oven .
Collage showing how to cook quinoa in the oven in six steps.

Wholefully Protip

I ’ ve found that three cups of dry quinoa is about the soap for a 9×12 baking dish .

  1. Measure your quinoa and add it to your baking dish. If your recipe calls for cooked quinoa, you can estimate the amount of dry quinoa you’ll need by remembering that for each cup of dried quinoa, you get approximately three cups of the cooked stuff.
  2. Pour in your liquid. There’s no need to stir; just pour it in. For each cup of dry quinoa, you’ll need two cups of liquid. You can use veggie broth, chicken broth, or even plain water. Quinoa will soak up the flavors of whichever liquid it is cooked in, so match the flavors based on the dish you’re serving it with.
  3. Wrap the baking dish tightly with aluminum foil. We’re looking to create a glorious sauna for the quinoa—the same way the pot lid works on the stove—so really cinch the foil around the edges.
  4. Bake for 25 minutes in a 375°F oven. Be careful when carrying your dish to the oven—especially if you have a big batch—it can get pretty sloshy!
  5. Remove from the oven and allow it to sit. Don’t touch it! Just let it rest and steam for five to ten minutes.
  6. Remove the foil and fluff your grains with a fork.

What did I tell you ? Perfect, downy quinoa !

Wholefully Protip

You can besides add other flavorings like herb, spices, butter, or salt. I like to keep my quinoa pretty plain, so it ’ mho decent and versatile. I can always add salt in by and by, but I can ’ t take it out !
Overhead of prepared quinoa in a pot on a countertop.

How to cook quinoa on the stove

Cooking quinoa on the stave is just american samoa easy as cooking it in the oven .

  1. Measure out the quinoa. Remember that one cup of dry quinoa will give you roughly three cups of cooked quinoa.
  2. Pour in the liquid. You’ll want to stick to a ratio of 2 parts liquid to 1 part quinoa, or two cups of fluid for every cup of grain. You can use vegetable broth, chicken broth, or water.
  3. Cover the pot with the lid and bring to a boil over medium heat. This should take four to five minutes, depending on your stove.
  4. Reduce heat to low and let your quinoa simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. How long it’ll take depends on the color of quinoa you used. White quinoa is usually done in 15 minutes, red and tricolor quinoa takes 18 minutes, and black quinoa takes 20 minutes.
  5. Allow your quinoa to rest for ten minutes with the lid on.
  6. Fluff with a fork when you’re ready to serve.

Wholefully Protip

A tight-fitting lid is the cardinal to tasty, downy quinoa. Once that hat is on, don ’ t take it off to peek, stir, or even sniff your quinoa ! You need that fast sealing wax to allow your quinoa to absorb a a lot water as it can so it becomes extremely downy .

Perfectly cooked quinoa in a white bowl with a spoon in the background.

Can you freeze quinoa?

absolutely ! Cooked quinoa is easy to freeze. To do so, let it cool wholly. then, scoop into zip-top deep-freeze bags and tag with the contents and amount of quinoa. After you ’ ve portioned out your servings, flatten the pack and get ampere much breeze out as possible. freeze flat—this makes it easier to store once freeze solid. Frozen quinoa is good for up to six months in the deep-freeze .

How do you thaw and reheat cooked quinoa?

The rare times I ’ thousand on exceed of things, I take a bag out of the deep-freeze the night before I use it and let it defrost in the electric refrigerator. You could besides take it out a few hours before cooking and let it warm up on the counter, or you could toss it in the microwave in 30-second bursts until it ’ sulfur thawed .
When making my greek quinoa salad or quinoa and cauliflower world power bowl, the quinoa doesn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate have to be warm ; room temperature is very well. If you do want to heat it up, place the defrost quinoa in a saucepan with a lid—so it doesn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate dry out—and cook it on moo until it ’ s precisely ardent. You could besides spread it out on a baking sheet and warm it in your toaster oven for a few minutes. Again, you could nuke it besides .
If you ’ re going to add it to another dish like my quinoa stuffed bell peppers, you can skip the reheat stagecoach and just use it as directed in the recipe. It will warm up as the dish cook !
Close view of the heads of two wooden spoons overflowing with multicolored grains.
How to Bulk Cook Quinoa and Freeze it For Later

Looking for some great quinoa recipes?

now that you have your quinoa, what should you do with it ? here are some of our favored uses :

Quinoa in a 9x13 baking pan

How to Cook Quinoa

concede :

3 cups

homework prison term :

5 minutes

cook fourth dimension :

25 minutes

full time :

30 minutes

The perfect quinoa is just minutes from an empty pantry. We show you how to cook quinoa in a way that creates a downy, perfectly tender texture .


  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water, chicken or veggie broth
  • Salt, butter, herbs, spices, optional


Oven Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. Optional: Rinse quinoa under running water, and drain through a fine-mesh sieve.
  3. Pour the quinoa and water or broth into a 9 x 13 casserole dish. Add the salt, butter, herbs, or spices, if using. Cover tightly with aluminum foil.
  4. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and rest for 5-10 minutes without opening the foil.
  5. After resting time, remove foil and fluff quinoa.

Stovetop Instructions

  1. Optional: Rinse quinoa under running water, and drain through a fine-mesh sieve.
  2. Combine the quinoa and liquid in a pot with a tight-fitting lid. Bring to a boil over medium heat.
  3. Remove the lid, reduce heat to low, and simmer until the liquid is absorbed, about 15-20 minutes.
  4. Turn off the heat and replace the lid. Let rest for 10 minutes, and then fluff with a fork.


double or triple the oven recipe and freeze the extras in zip-top deep-freeze bags .

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1/2 cup

Amount Per Serving:



Total Fat:


Saturated Fat:


Trans Fat:


Unsaturated Fat:














At Wholefully, we believe that good nutrition is about much more than merely the numbers on the nutrition facts panel. Please use the above information as lone a minor part of what helps you decide what foods are nourishing for you .

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