10 Ways to Use Quinoa in Your Next Meal

| Food

Quinoa is celebrated mostly for its hearty flavor, but it packs plenty of health benefits, too. It's high in protein, fiber, iron, magnesium and riboflavin (B2). One of the most unique properties of this superfood, though, is that there are endless recipe possibilities that highlight quinoa. So whether your next meal is breakfast, lunch or dinner, or if you're scrambling through the pantry for snacks or dessert, you can use quinoa to liven up nearly any dish.

Quinoa For Breakfast

Make pancakes: Quinoa is cooked and eaten like a grain, so it is a simpler, healthier way to bake! If you're craving pancakes but forgot to pick up mix at the grocery, use quinoa and a mixture of pantry staples to whip up a delicious breakfast. If you've got some overly ripe bananas, throw them in to make quinoa banana pancakes.

quinoa banana pancakes

>> Read more: Best Uses for Overly-Ripened Fruit

Replace your oatmeal: If you usually eat a bowl of oatmeal in the morning, try swapping it for quinoa and spices. It's just as easy to put together and it can be popped in the microwave, but it also packs added nutritional benefits. Topped with your favorite fruits, it makes the most important meal of the day a delicious treat. Try our Protein-Packed Fruity Breakfast Quinoa here. 

Protein Packed Fruity Breakfast Quinoa finshed close up

Quinoa for Lunch

Substitute your rice bowl: Mix up your stir-fry or rice bowl by making a quinoa-based dish. You can add your desired meat, veggies and spices to create endless flavorful combinations. Click here to try our Healthy Chicken Quinoa Power Bowl!

healhty chicken quinoa power bowl

Make a wrap: Quinoa's consistency makes it perfect in a wrap at your lunchtime meal. You can add beans, vegetables and sauces to create a simple, low-calorie, filling food that doesn't lack flavor. Mix up your lunch by making this Quinoa Wrap with Black Beans, Feta and Avocado!

Quinoa Wrap with Black Beans, Feta & Avocado

>> Read more: The 10 Best Ways to Eat an Avocado

Quinoa for Dinner

'Bread' meat: If you're tired of parmesan crusted meat or Shake'N Bake breading, try tossing your protein in toasted quinoa. Combined with seasonings and spices, it adds a flavor-filled, crunchy coating to your meat without frying it. Check out this recipe for Spicy Quinoa Crusted Chicken.

spicy quinoa crusted chicken

Make a casserole: Casseroles are meant to use a smorgasbord of ingredients, so why not include quinoa? It creates a base for any casserole from pastas to Tex-Mex dishes. For a Mexican dinner, try this Quinoa Fiesta Enchilada Bake.

Fiesta Quinoa Enchilada Bake

Quinoa in Appetizers

Stuff vegetables: Stuffed peppers, mushrooms and tomatoes are popular appetizers, but the ground beef and rice can often leave you too full for your meal. Swap these out for quinoa to experience a lighter, healthier option without ruining your dinner. Try making these Quinoa Stuffed Tomatoes for your party guests or your family.

Quinoa Stuffed Tomatoes with baking pan

>> Read more: 17 Insanely Good Stuffed Vegetables

Make breadsticks: Quinoa breadsticks are a delicious substitute for its floury counterparts, cutting calories and holding extra health benefits. You'll need cooked quinoa and quinoa flour to make these yummy bites like these Cauliflower and Quinoa Pizza Sticks.

cauliflower quinoa breadsticks

Quinoa in Dessert

Make brownies: Believe it or not, you can even pair this superfood with chocolate! It makes your traditional cookies and brownies much healthier to calm your sweet cravings. Check out this recipe for Quinoa Brownies, which also hide other healthy ingredients like flax and butternut squash.

quinoa brownies
(Photo: Nosh and Nourish)

Toast it: Toasting quinoa is a perfect way to incorporate it in your desserts. This Holiday Bark with Toasted Quinoa, Nosh and Nourish says, resembles the taste of a Nestle Crunch bar, but it doesn't come along with the added sugar and calories. It includes pistachios and apricots, too, to round out this healthy sweet. And while the name calls it a "holiday" treat, we promise it's a good dessert all year long.

holiday bark with toasted quinoa
(Photo: Nosh and Nourish)