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Mexican Style Quinoa

I debated which site to post this Mexican Style Quinoa on, but I finally decided that since quinoa is perfect for those on a gluten free diet, I would post it here in my allergy section.

Quinoa is so healthy and I have tried to use it more since going gluten free. My family though has had a little trouble adjusting to it. They have issues with the texture and taste and I have had to get creative when using it, but they are slowly beginning to like it.

One of the ways they now enjoy quinoa is in this Mexican Style Quinoa. All I did was substitute quinoa in my Mexican Rice recipe. It was that easy and it turned out really well. And it is healthier than making it with white rice.

I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

Lynn's Kitchen Adventures


  1. Lynn,
    I’m thinking of making this for a church pot-luck. Do you think people that have never eating or heard of Quinoa would like it? I know most of my kids are not crazy about Quinoa but I thought with the spices and cheese it may taste different.

    We all love the pasta made with Quinoa and corn.

    • I think it would be worth taking and see what people think. Many have probably heard of it, but may have never had it. And like you said with the spices and cheeses it does taste different. I hope you like it.

  2. What a great way to add trusted and well liked flavors to something that’s new to their taste buds. I’ll definitely be giving this a try. Can’t believe I never thought of it. I often mix rice and quinoa which would be an option for this too if the family still thinks it’s too much quinoa.

    • Well you gave me the idea to try this when you said you often mix it with rice. Once you mentioned that, I thought of all the ways I make rice and how I could just use quinoa in the place of rice in some of my side dishes. I think I am going to try using 1/2 rice 1/2 quinoa next in a few things and see if my family likes it that way also.

  3. Yum! We use quinoa quite a bit. I agree, it is tough to get used to. I like this recipe because I could use it in place of spanish rice.

  4. beingjennifer says

    LOVE quinoa!! Looking forward to trying this.

  5. Kirstin- Does that mean if I keep forcing myself to eat quinoa one day I will actually look at a recipe and think, “yum?” I know it is so good for me, but I really don’t enjoy it, and therefor don’t make it very often.

  6. I made this tonight and it was very good. I did however have to let it cook longer this may have to do with the fact that I doubled the recipe. With the left overs I plan on adding some ground beef and corn to make it more like a casserole.

    • I am so glad you liked it Dionne. The first time I made it I used Bob’a Red Mill quinoa and the above time worked. When I made it this week I used a different brand/kind of quinoa and it did take a few minutes longer, so I guess it may depend on the quinoa on the time. I thought the same thing about adding things to it. I think you could easily change this up by adding corn, beans, and meat to it.

  7. Do you rinse the quinoa befre toasting it? I have read that it needs to be rinsed prior to cooking due to the fact that as nature’s way of protecting the grain from birds it has a natural soapy type taste if not rinsed first.

  8. This recipe doesn’t say anything about washing the quinoa before using. Washing removes a film on the seed that improves the flavor.

    • Thanks for mentioning that. I did forget to include that in the directions and I have updated it to include it.

  9. I used to buy a brand of quinoa from Trader Joes (my first experience with quinoa, actually) that was labeled as not needing to be rinsed. So I suppose on who you buy your quinoa from. I don’t live near a Trader Joe’s anymore, so my quinoa comes from bulk foods sections with no cooking instructions.

    I use quinoa in place of rice many of my rice-based recipes (I’ve tried millet too with some success). My favorite way to eat quinoa is still with just a bit of butter or olive oil to bring out the slightly nutty taste.

  10. Your post inspired me. I sauteed pepper, onion, zucchini and garlic. I added in a can of green chilies and an 8oz can of tomato sauce. Threw in the quinoa I had in the fridge along with the ground meat and some taco seasoning. Tasted pretty good, been eating it for the last couple of days. That is the thing about my being gluten free I will make myself a meal when I can’t eat what the family is making and then I eat the same thing for a few days till its gone.

  11. Hi Lynn, I just wanted to share that I’ve made this several times for my family now and we all love it. Every time I make Mexican food, I make this instead of rice. I sometimes modify the recipe to try and get more authentic flavor by adding the drippings from once piece of cooked bacon (about a teaspoon full). I don’t always do this though. Before I tried your recipe, I had some quinoa sitting in my pantry since last Summer when I had bought it to make a salad for a cookout. Thank you for sharing!


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