How To Make Quinoa In The Instant Pot

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Quinoa In Instant Pot


Making Instant Pot quinoa is the easiest way to achieve perfectly fluffy quinoa that still has the right amount of texture to it. It cuts down the total time to just 13 minutes from start to finish and allows you to make a big batch all at once. Making quinoa pressure cooker takes so much of the guess work out of it because there is no need to adjust the cooking temperature, no worrying about boiling water, and no burning the bottom of any pots! Its basically effortless and totally hands-off!

Once you have your quinoa all ready to go, you can use it for your quinoa granola or quinoa egg muffins in the morning, or for a kale and quinoa salad at lunch. Use it as a side dish like these quinoa falafels for dinner or separate it into smaller portions for meal prep for the week. Then, whatever you dont use you can freeze for later.

Much like having perfectly cooked rice in the Instant Pot, getting the same results with quinoa is a game-changer. You wont ever have to worry about how much water is too much, or how much is too little. You wont even need to worry about whether or not its cooked right, because the Instant Pot is designed to figure that out for you. And it always comes through!

Tips For No Fail Pressure Cooker Quinoa

  • I tried 1 cup quinoa : 1.5 cups water total mush. Using less water makes sense because the Instant Pot captures more of the steam which makes for more condensation and less evaporation.
  • Quinoa on its own has an earthy slightly nutty taste, but overall can be pretty bland. Therefore, adding a bit of salt will give it a little depth of flavor. If you will be adding it to a recipe that already requires salt, you may want to hold off on adding it in.
  • Pre-packaged quinoa usually comes already rinsed, but there is no harm in running it underwater again. There is something called saponin that coats the quinoa, and to eat it is extremely bitter , so you want to get that off!
  • The cook time remains the same, no matter how much you make!

What Instant Pot Should I Use

I recently purchased the Instant Pot Duo Evo Plus in the 6 quart size. I truly feel like thats really the size you need. Of course, if you have a lot of mouths to feed, you can get the bigger size but I really feel like you can do a lot with 6 quarts.

There are several Instant Pots that have the quinoa cooking option, which mine does as well. However, I found that the best way to cook the quinoa is actually just with the straight up pressure cooker setting.

That way, anyone with any type of Instant Pot can make this, and youll also always get the best cooked quinoa results.

Also Check: How To Defrost Ground Beef In Instant Pot

Quinoa To Water Ratio

Ive tested 1 ½ cups and 1 ¾ cups water to 1 cup of dried quinoa, both with great results. You can safely use anywhere in between, and it will turn out perfectly. Less water yields an al dente quinoa, and the higher amount is softer but not mushy. I found them to be equally good in texture and fluffiness.

How To Cook Quinoa Perfectly

How to Cook Instant Pot Quinoa
  • Rinse: Start by always washing your quinoa. If you have ever had quinoa and thought it tasted bitter or soapy, that is because it was not washed before cooking. The quinoa has a protective coating called sapion that is very bitter and needs to be rinsed off. I like to add the quinoa to the insert of the pressure cooker, add hot water and agitate the quinoa by hand to really make sure the coating comes off. Rinse this water off with a fine mesh strainer and add the quinoa back to the pressure cookerpot.
  • Measure: Next add 1.5 cups of water for every 1 cup of dry quinoa. This will give you the perfect water to quinoa ratio. This ratio is the same for white, red and mixed varieties of quinoa.
  • Cook: Put on the lid, set it to sealing and turn the pressure cooker on for 1 minute of cook time, high pressure . This is how long you will need to cook it.
  • Vent: After the quinoa comes up to pressure and cooks 1 minute, allow it to naturally release10 minutes for the white quinoa or up to 15 minutes for the red or mixed variety. If you are unsure, just allow it to naturally release.To release pressure, turn the vent from sealing to venting using a long wooden spoon or other utensil to keep your hands and face away from the steam that will come out.
  • Fluff: Open the pressure cooker lid and fluff the quinoa with a fork. Serve immediately or store in the fridge or freezer.
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    More Healthy Instant Pot Recipes

    If you liked this recipe, make sure to check out my Healthy Instant Pot Recipes for more inspiration. The list will keep growing over time. There will always be more and more inspiration for you to start loving your Instant Pot even more than you already do. The possibilities are endless when it comes to preparing food in an Instant Pot. Enjoy every button on it

    Is Quinoa Better For You Than Rice

    Quinoa and rice are pretty similar in texture and cooking method, however, they have very different nutritional profiles. Quinoa is actually more similar to leafy vegetables!

    It is a complete protein with nine essential amino acids. Pretty impressive! Quinoa has much more fiber, few carbs and fewer calories than white.

    There are some varieties of rice that will be better on the nutrition scale, but when comparing quinoa to white rice, quinoa is more nutritionally superior.

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    Tips For Cooking Pasta In The Instant Pot

    • Youll want to reference the pasta cooking instructions to help you gauge how long to cook for in the Instant Pot. For example, if you are cooking a macaroni-type pasta that normally takes 10 minutes on the stove, you will want to divide that in half and reduce by one minute .
    • Our quinoa macaroni cooks in 4-5 minutes on the stove top. For Instant Pot cooking purposes, we halved 4 minutes, and reduced by 1 minute .
    • We add a tiny bit of oil to prevent foaming this doesnt always work.. in fact, sometimes the oil can coat the pasta and will deter the sauce from sticking. It usually still foams, but not quite as much if I forget to add oil.
    • Add 1 tsp of salt for every 2-3 cups of water this, too can help with foaming in the Instant Pot.
    • When it comes to releasing the pressure, have patience. If you forget that you have pasta and walk away for too long, you will find yourself with a mushy mess. I always quick release, and throw a towel over the valve but even then, after a few seconds, all that foam can create a starchy nightmare to clean. So try releasing in short bursts.. a few seconds at a time, until the pressure has been exhausted.
    • Dont get overzealous and just force the pressure to release quickly because, well. I have, not a fun thing to clean up.
    • Once you are done, use the pasta immediately by adding your sauce. Or, drain and rinse in cool water to stop the cooking process.

    Have you cooked pasta in the Instant Pot? How did it work for you?

    Tips For Perfect Pressure Cooking Quinoa

    How to Cook Quinoa in the Instant Pot
    • Lubricate that pot! Either use cooking spray or toast the quinoa beforehand in oil.
    • If you have extra time, rinse quinoa thoroughly to get rid of extra bitterness. Most quinoa comes pre-rinsed, but true quinoa freaks wont forget the ol rinse n shake!
    • Add the right amount of water to avoid soupy, mushy quinoa. Dont worry, the ratio couldnt be simpler! Use 1 cup water or broth for every cup of quinoa.

    Read Also: Can You Steam Kale

    How To Make Instant Pot Quinoa

    Confession: this Instant Pot quinoa recipe took Alex and me a long time to master! Every time we thought we had it perfect, something else would be not quite right. Online sources use all sorts of different methods that may or may not work. So, here were sharing the Instant Pot quinoa recipe that finally worked for us. Note that there is some variation in quinoa brands and pressure cookers, so you may have to customize it to your equipment and quinoa brand.

    Heres how we make our Instant Pot quinoa! This made for fluffy quinoa that was perfect every time :

  • Place 1 ½ cups quinoa in the pressure cooker with 1 ¾ cups vegetable broth.
  • Pressure cook on high for 3 minutes.
  • Natural release for 8 minutes.
  • Tips For The Best Instant Pot Quinoa

    • Toast for extra flavor. Add your preferred cooking oil to the Instant Pot, select the sauté mode, and lightly toast the quinoa until it starts to brown. Doing this brings out the nutty flavor of quinoa.
    • Add saffron to your quinoa. A bit of saffron goes a long way, says Singh. Adding this spice to Instant Pot quinoa is the easiest way to turn quinoa skeptics into quinoa lovers.
    • Think outside the box. Quinoa isnt just an excellent base for salads. Use it to make fried rice and fritters, for example. One of Singhs favorite ways to use quinoa is in khichdi, an Indian porridge that traditionally contains rice and lentils. She uses quinoa in place of the rice.
    • Add mix-ins. Quinoa can be fairly bland on its own, but Singh recommends mix-ins like peas, sweet potato, and chickpeas to add texture and flavor. Adding nuts and feta cheese to quinoa is another tasty option.

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    A Few Ways To Flavor:

    While the simple water, quinoa, and pinch of salt combination deliver good results, you can easily take this pressure cooker quinoa recipe up a notch. Here are a few easy adjustments you can make to this Instant pot 1-minute quinoa recipe to make it taste better:

  • Toast quinoa with oil: Toasting quinoa with coconut oil using the sautee function for 2-3 minutes helps with bringing out its nutty and earthy flavors. I would recommend using 1-2 teaspoons of oil for every cup of quinoa you cook. Also, be sure to stir constantly to prevent it from burning.
  • Swap water with broth: Depending on where you are planning to use your cooked quinoa, you can switch up the cooking liquid. Simply use the same ratio and use vegetable, beef or chicken broth as the cooking liquid.
  • If you are in need of more ideas to flavor quinoa, be sure to check out the detailed post I wrote on how to make quinoa taste good.

    What Others Are Saying

    How to Cook Instant Pot Quinoa

    McKenzie C says:

    I love quinoa, but when I first started making it I was cooking it all wrong. This pressure cooker version is so quick and easy. Much faster than cooking on the stove top, and with better results. It’s never under or over cooked when following this recipe. Thanks so much, Caroline!

    Melissa P says:

    I have so many failed attempts at making quinoa because Im inpatient and/or walk away while its cooking and leave it on too long. This recipe for making it my pressure cooker takes all the guess work out and results in perfect, fluffy quinoa every time. I no longer call it my pressure cooker, I call it my quinoa cooker. Amazing!

    Erin Hudson says:

    My husband and I have been try to pack more protein into our diets since we have been working out. This quinoa recipe was super easy thanks to the instant pot. paired this dish with pan seared chicken breast with squash and zucchini.

    Amy L says:

    I used chicken broth instead of water and it was delicious. This was also my first time making quinoa and it was so easy. Definitely rinse before cooking, I almost missed that tip when reading this and I couldnt believe how murky the rinse water was.

    Paige Allison says:

    This was my first item cooked in my new pot and turned out great. I used chicken broth, added salt, pepper and granulated garlic powder. I cant believe it actually worked! Has anyone tried to double the recipe or use more water or brother to yield more cooked quinoa? Thanks!

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    Instant Pot Santa Fe Chicken Over Quinoa An Easy Healthy Instant Pot Chicken Recipe Perfect For Dinner Or Make

    Ive been getting my school brain back on lately. For those of you who are new to the blog, I am also a middle school math and science teacher. So lately Ive been in my classroom working since school is less than a month away. Part of that prep process gets me thinking about also preparing my make-ahead lunches for school weeks. This Santa Fe Chicken over Quinoa recipe is exactly the kind of meal I like to bring to work for the week!

    My teaching partners and I are all into making lunches and freezing them. It makes life so easy in the morning! Plus, we have something healthy to eat all week. We like to make this soup, and this soup, and this one too!

    We have found that eating these soups and meals like this Santa Fe Chicken over Quinoa really helps us shed a few pounds during the school year. Of course, that is as long as I can stay away from the candy!

    This meal could be made using a slow cooker, but I have found the Instant Pot cooks chicken so much better!!!

    Why This Recipe Works

    • Perfect fluffy quinoa every single time.
    • A quick and easy way to add lots of nutrients, protein, and extra fibre into your meals.
    • A superfood that can add lots of texture and heartiness to your vegetarian dishes.
    • Naturally gluten-free, sugar-free, dairy-free.
    • Very versatile so it can be used in a wide variety of dishes.
    • There is no waiting for water to boil which cuts down the overall cook time.
    • Takes the guesswork out of figuring out when you need to reduce the heat or turn off the pot.
    • Kids love this earthy, chewy, and crunchy little grain!

    Read Also: What Is The Poultry Setting On Instant Pot

    How To Cook Quinoa In The Instant Pot

  • Rinse the quinoa well in a fine-mesh strainer.
  • Place quinoa and water in the Instant Pot. If you are cooking the quinoa in water, add a little bit of salt for flavor. Stir.
  • Pressure cook at high pressure for 1 minute.
  • When the cook time ends, allow the pressure to naturally release until the pin drops down.
  • Carefully open the Instant Pot lid. Fluff the quinoa and serve.
  • Adding Flavor To Instant Pot Quinoa

    Instant Pot Quinoa | READY in 10 Minutes Vegan Quinoa Burger Recipe!

    If youd like to add even more flavor and nutrition to your Instant Pot Quinoa, you could cook it in bone broth instead of water. I love to make bone broth in either my slow cooker or instant pot. All you need is some leftover meat bones and veggie scraps.

    The result is Instant Pot perfect quinoa thats never mushy, and always flavorful.

    You can make as little or as much Instant Pot quinoa as youd like. Ill often double or triple the recipe. There is no need to adjust the cook time. Once its finished, I like to portion the quinoa into freezer bags to have on hand for when Im needing some cooked quinoa especially handy when I get a craving for these Blueberry & White Chocolate Quinoa Breakfast Cookies. Just thaw the quinoa in the fridge overnight, or reheat it in the microwave or on the stovetop, adding a tablespoon of water and covering the bowl or pan. It will take about a minute in the microwave. On the stove, heat on low until heated through.

    If this Instant Pot Quinoa turned out perfect for you I would appreciate it so much if you would give this recipe a star review! Also, be sure to snap a picture of your finished dish and share it with me on

    For more great Platings & Pairings recipes, be sure to follow me on , , and .

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    Cooking Time For Other Types Of Quinoa :

    You might ask, what if I want to cook tri-color quinoa in an instant pot?

    I am glad you asked because I find that red, black, and tricolor quinoa takes just a bit longer to cook.

    As a preparation for this post, I have cooked all three kinds of quinoa and found that the best cook time for them is 3 minutes. Therefore, if you are cooking any other quinoa than the white quinoa, be sure to adjust the actual cooking time accordingly.

    If You Make This Recipe Please Share A Link To The Recipe Online And Tag Me I Love To See What You Are Cooking Up In Your Kitchen

    Brittany Williams has taken the weight loss world by storm with her best-selling Instant Loss Cookbook. After reaching a peak weight of 260 pounds and spending a lifetime struggling with obesity, yo-yo dieting, autoimmune diseases, and chronic fatigue, Brittany changed her relationship with food and lost an astonishing 125 pounds in a year through diet alone.

    Brittanys latest book, Instant Loss Eat Real, Lose Weight shows how to make this a sustainable lifestyle with kid and family-friendly mealsfrom Strawberry Shortcake Oatmeal to Cowboy Chili to Easy 2-Minute Pork Chops. Members of her growing community have reported losing 50 and even 100 pounds themselves! This cookbook will help others achieve similar success with simple, delicious meals, nearly all ready in 30 minutes or less.

    • 1large yellow onion, diced
    • 1teaspoonfine ground sea salt

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