Easy Guide: How To Cook Quinoa On Stove Top

Watch how to cook quinoa on the stovetop:

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Today we're talking all about QUINOA - what it is, what are the benefits of eating this, and most importantly, how to cook it on a stovetop... because it can be tricky! But have no worries, I will show you my tips and tricks to get the tastiest and fluffy quinoa that will taste amazing. You will learn how long it takes to cook quinoa along with its awesome benefits that will make you want to eat even more quinoa.


easy cooked quinoa on stovetop served in a dish

Step By Step Guide On How To Cook Quinoa On A Stovetop

Quinoa may seem a bit tricky at first and straight up intimidating. When I first bought quinoa I think I kept the bag in my pantry for weeks before I finally decided to face my fears and cook some up.

The most common way for people to make quinoa is on a stovetop. Its convenient, easy to make and a healthy food choice.


This is our easy how to guide. Follow these instructions and become a quinoa chef in no time.

Step #1 - Rinse & Drain Quinoa Before Cooking 

Rinse and drain your quinoa thoroughly in cold water before cooking. Use a strainer to make this process a little bit easier.

*Tip: Alway make sure to rinse off your quinoa. Even if the quinoa that you purchased at the store says its pre-rinsed its a good idea to do it yourself too. This helps make the quinoa taste less biter. You can also skip this step if you wish to try a stronger tasting quinoa.

Step #2 - Measure 1 cup of dry quinoa and add it to your pot. 

*Tip: 1 cup of dry quinoa makes about 3 cups of cooked quinoa. So if you want to make even more quinoa then you would just add more cups and keep the same ratios.

Step #3 - Add 1 1/2 cups of water or vegetable broth to the pot

*Tip: If you add more than 1 1/2 cups of water you will get a sticker and wetter quinoa. If you want a fluffy and tasty quinoa you should stick to 1 1/2 water. You can also use vegetable broth at the same ratios that adds a different flavor and adds some more nutrition to your meal

Step #4 - Get the above combination together and bring it to a boil. Once it starts to bubble on your stovetop lower the heat to low (1-3 setting depending on your appliance). Let it simmer until all the water in the pot has evaporated.  Make sure to stir the quinoa throughout this process so that it cooks evenly. The end product will be a deliciously dry, fluffy and light quinoa.

*Tip: While the quinoa is boiling add some salt or any other of your favorite of your herbs and spices for extra flavor.


How Long Does It Take To Cook Quinoa?

Prep and cooking time will take about 15-20 minutes. Times will vary depending on what type of stovetop you have. Not all stovetops are created equal. One stovetops low setting might be anothers medium setting. That is why its important to supervise your first batch to get your individual cooking time.

Trust me, the quinoa can quickly go from fluffy and ready to eat to burnt and in the trash really quickly. Use a timer the first time you cook it so you have a better idea of how long it will take to cook the next time around.

More Insights & Thoughts On Cooking Quinoa on a StoveTop

Here's the deal - many quinoa recipes call for a 1 to 2 ratio, meaning 1 cup of quinoa and 2 cups of liquid. You can definitely do it that way, but based on my experience (and my preference) I like the texture of quinoa cooked with only 1.5 cup of liquid. It's drier, fluffier, and less 'mushy' and wet.

Feel free to experiment and use 1 or 2 cups, whatever works for you. 🙂

Can Quinoa Be Frozen?

Yes! It definitely can be frozen after you cook it . One thing that I love to do with my cooked quinoa is to make large batches. What I do with the leftovers is freeze and have it ready to eat in the future. Future me always thanks past me for this. All you have to do is put it in a refrigerator safe container and its ready to go.

Its easy to do and the quinoa taste just as great. For those of you that do meal prepping this would be a great staple to your diet. Some consider quinoa a superfood and for good reasons. Read below on some of its benefits.

There are other ways to cook quinoa including a very easy method using your instant pot (affiliate link) if you have one. If you'd like to learn more on how to cook quinoa in your instant pot - you can check out this detailed guide by Becky from Glue and Glitter.

white cooked quinoa on stovetop

what is quinoa and why is it good for me?

If you are not familiar with what quinoa is already, let me fill you in.

Quinoa kinda looks like a grain, is cooked like a grain, and is served like a grain usually replacing rice in dishes. But here's the thing - it's not actually a grain at all. It's a seed! I know, I can't keep up either. 😛

Anyway, the point is - since it's not reallyyy a grain... it's gluten free, and a great alternative for those who are A. gluten intolerant, and/or B. have a sensitivity to grains or simply want to avoid grains all together.


tricolor sprouted quinoa in a pot

quinoa is highly nutritious 

Quinoa is also highly nutritious and it's no surprise that it has become a popular superfood in the last few years with this new wave of wellness consciousness. It has a ton of fiber which helps us stay regular, and it's a great source of protein (around 24 grams of protein per 1 uncooked cup) .. so, next time someone asks you 'where do you get your protein from' - you can say from QUINOA!

Quinoa also contains nine essential amino acids - but what does that even mean right?

You might have heard this saying before: Amino Acids are the building blocks of life. Our cells, muscles and tissues are made up of amino acids. They help our cells, muscles and tissues do all sorts of stuff like transport and store nutrients, repair damaged tissue, and assist in many other bodily functions.

We can all agree that amino acids are prettyyy important right? Okay, so here's the thing... there are nine ESSENTIAL amino acids, essential meaning that we absolutely need them in our body, yet the body doesn't produce them naturally... so we must get them from our food.

And that's where quinoa shines - because it contains ALL nine essential amino acids! SCORE!


stovetop cooked quinoa served on a dish

How To Eat Quinoa & What Does It Pair Well With?

I like to treat quinoa as if it was rice. I usually include it in dishes as an alternative to rice. You can serve it with beans. It goes great with vegan garbanzos or red kidney beans. You can make a 'bliss' bowl using quinoa.. you can stuff your vegan sushi with quinoa.. you can add quinoa to your favorite soup for a heartier and more filling meal. Lotssss of options with this little magical not-a-grain-but-a-seed food. Its a great substitute for rice that adds a wealth of nutrition to your health. Taste great and is great for your immune system.


stovetop cooked quinoa served with beans and veggies



Different Tyes Of Quinoa: White, Red, Black + sprouted quinoa

The most common type of quinoa is white, and it may be the one you are familiar with already but did you know there is also red and black quinoa?!

And then there is also the 'sprouted' kind which means that the seeds have been soaked and allowed to 'sprout' or grow, become alive. It is believed that anything that has been allowed to sprout has more nutrition and contains more energy than 'not sprouted'.


Trader Joe's Quinoa products

where to buy quinoa

Today it is very easy to find quinoa in your nearest grocery store due to it's popularity. You can definitely find some in your nearest Whole Foods or Trader Joe's store. I have only seen the sprouted kind in Trader Joe's (pictured above). You can even find a variety of brands and types of quinoa on amazon! Quinoa is very affordable, I always go for organic quinoa to make sure to get the purest and cleanest quinoa. You can find quinoa in the same grocery isles that you would find rice. There are different brands but we usually go with the most affordable by pound. Don't look at the price of the quinoa by the bag, look at the same number on the price tag that shows you the price per oz. This is a great trick you can apply to almost all items to know which is the most affordable pound for pound.


cooked quinoa served with beans and salad

Delicious Quinoa: The End Product

Hopefully these instructions have motivated you to try to cook quinoa on your stove today. You see, its not that hard. You too can cook tasty quinoa for yourself and others. Try to incorporate this superfood today. If you any additional questions on how to cook quinoa on a stovetop make sure to reach out to us. If you have recipes that you would like to see on the blog having to do with quinoa, please let us know.

Are you a quinoa fan? What's your favorite way to eat it? Share with me below. 

Want to see more Friday Features?

Find out What Is The Best Store Bought Vegan Ice Cream Brand or Learn Why Frozen Fruits Are A Must Have For Vegans.

with love + gratitude,

Jen ♥

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easy stovetop quinoa in a plate

How To Cook Quinoa On The Stove Top Easy

  • Author: Jen
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 2 cups cooked 1x


An easy and fool proof way to cook quinoa on the stove top.


  • 1 cup dry quinoa
  • 1 1/4 cup vegetable broth (or water)
  • dash of salt


  1. Add 1 cup of quinoa, 1 1/4 cup of vegetable broth or water and a dash of salt to a pot and bring to a boil on the stove-top.
  2. Once it begins to boil, bring down heat to low/medium, cover and let simmer for another 10 to 12 minutes or until all water has evaporated and quinoa is soft and fluffy.


  • Quinoa recipes usually call for 2 cups of liquid, but based on my experience I have found that using a 1:1.25 ratio really leaves you with the driest and ‘fluffiest’ quinoa, vs a mushy and wet quinoa. Feel free to experiment, and if your quinoa still seems uncooked feel free to add a bit more water or veggie broth.
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Cuisine: quinoa

Keywords: quinoa, how to cook quinoa, easy quinoa, fluffy quinoa, gluten free, vegan, dinner

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About Jen

A former registered nurse turned stay-at-home-mama, yoga teacher, and holistic health + wellness enthusiast. I share my homemade healthy recipes + natural living content to help women and moms live healthier and happier lives.

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