All About Quinoa – and What You Should Make With It

Check out the history behind quinoa and why you should incorporate it into your diet

Learn about the origins of quinoa, why it’s so healthy, and what you can make with it this week.

Quinoa means “mother grain” in Quechua, the language used by Incans, and although it’s recently exploded in popularity as a supergrain, people living on the Andean mountain plateaus and in the valleys of Peru, Ecuador, Chile, and Bolivia have been eating quinoa for over 5,000 years. The food is in the same botanical family as spinach and beets. Quinoa was also a staple in the Incan diet.

Quinoa is technically a seed but is prepared like a whole grain and only takes 10 to 15 minutes to cook. It’s also a great choice for vegetarians and vegans, since it provides more protein than any whole grain and contains all nine amino acids. The food also contains iron, which benefits red blood cells and supplies oxygen to our blood and, therefore, our brains. Are you allergic to gluten or watching your cholesterol? Quinoa is a safe bet for you, too, as it’s free of both. Here’s a roundup of three quinoa recipes you should try.

Quinoa and Chicken Burritos

These burritos have ingredients like rotisserie chicken, black beans, Monterey Jack cheese, and avocado. They’re perfect for a low-fat lunch.

Quinoa and Chickpea Burgers

These burgers are healthy and packed with protein. They also incorporate an egg, cilantro, and cumin.

Quinoa and Pomegranate Salad with Toasted Almonds

A healthy salad with quinoa, parsley, pomegranate seeds, and almonds? Count us in.

From quinoa with watercress, pears, and pomegranates, to hazelnut and quinoa-stuffed peppers, check out more quinoa recipes here.