Quinoa is pronounced keenwa. It is an annual plant from the amaranth family. Quinoa is a pseudocereal that is native to South America, but is now also grown in Europe. It grows between 60 cm and 2 m in height with flowering panicles that offer small seeds. The plant’s leaves resemble those of spinach. The main producing countries are Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador. By crossing different types of Quinoa, new varieties were developed that also grow well in Europe. There is white, red and black Quinoa. Red Quinoa has a tasty, nutty flavour. Quinoa is prepared and eaten in the same way as rice, couscous and bulgur. It is gluten-free, a good source of protein and rich in vitamins B, E, copper, magnesium and iron, and is ideal for those who are looking for cholesterol lowering foods to add to their meal plan.

How To Choose

Quinoa is available in various varieties from health food shops and good supermarkets. You can also buy gluten-free quinoa flour and puffed quinoa.

How To Prepare

Quinoa is prepared in the same way as rice. Quinoa seeds are naturally covered in saponins. Saponins are bitter compounds that offer natural protection against insects. In most cases, all saponins have been removed. However, it is best to rinse your Quinoa well in a fine sieve to make sure. Boil the drained quinoa in some water or stock until tender. The quinoa is ready when the germs of the seeds are released. Quinoa expands up to three times its original size during boiling. Once it is boiled, it can be used in many different ways.

  • You can start your day with a quinoa breakfast by mixing in a handful of nuts and some fresh fruit of your choice.
  • You can make a quinoa salad with avocado and chicken or add quinoa to your stir-fries and vegetarian dishes to add great flavour and a delicious bite.

Preparation time

  • Boiling white Quinoa: approx.12 minutes;
  • Boiling red Quinoa: approx. 15 minutes;
  • Boiling black Quinoa: approx. 15 minutes.

How To Store

Store Quinoa in a dry, cool, dark place.

Use 75 g of Quinoa per person for optimal nutritional value.

Nutritional Info

  • 355 kcal,
  • 14 g protein,
  • 6 g fat,
  • 57 g carbohydrate, and
  • 7 g dietary fibre.

If you’re looking for tasty recipes that have your heart health in mind, be sure to take a look at Flora’s selection of healthy recipes.