Let Me Try The Quinoa Pudding


This Quinoa Pudding is a delicious and healthy treat.

In case you were wondering, quinoa, pronounced keen-wa or kee-no-a, depending on your preference, is a nutritious, high-protein, whole-grain substitute for rice.  And like rice, it can be used as a tasty side dish or accompaniment to salads, casseroles, soups, and even desserts. 


It Is But It Isn’t


Quinoa should be rinsed before being cooked.

Uncooked quinoa looks a little like sesame seeds with tiny tails.

Technically, quinoa is not a grain as it is not a member of any grass family.  Instead, the quinoa we buy to eat is the seed from a particular species of goosefoot—a flowering plant. Still, it looks a lot like any grain you’d find whole.


Really Good For You


Quinoa has a low glycemic index and provides all 9 essential amino acids (making it a complete plant protein source—this is unusual in the plant world.  Quinoa is also gluten-free  which means it’s easy to digest.  Finally, it is high in fiber, and packed with essential vitamins and minerals like magnesium, phosphorous and iron.  For more information about Quinoa’s potential health benefits see this page at World’s Healthiest Foods.


Quinoa pudding is surprisinly delicious.

When cooked as a pudding, quinoa looks a little like tapioca.

I’ve found quinoa’s texture to be a bit chewier than brown rice, though it doesn’t look all that different at first glance.  And the first couple times I tried it, I was thrown for a loop—I expected it to taste a more like rice than it did.  Since then, I’m coming to enjoy it in its own right.


For one of our first forays into Quinoa, my wife and I decided to make a Quinoa Pudding based on an old rice pudding recipe we liked.  The first time we tried this we used too much milk—it took too long to absorb it.  The second time we used less and it came out fine.  Our pudding is great with fresh fruit, nuts or all on its own.    Here’s what we did.


Let’s Gather The Ingredients


This was easy as we only needed:


You'll need to cook the quinoa first.

This recipe only takes a few simple ingredients.

2 cups cooked quinoa

1 cup milk

1/3 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon of vanilla

1 tablespoon butter (optional)




Quinao cooks faster than rice.

Follow the instructions on the package to cook up the quinoa.

Start by cooking up some quinoa.  To get 2 cups of cooked quinoa we used 1/2 cup dry quinoa with 1 cup water.  Cooking time was approximately 15 minutes per the package, but we found if you cook it a couple extra minutes it softens a bit more.


Stir frequently.

Start the pudding by adding milk to the cooked quinoa.

To make the pudding, take a kettle and add your cooked quinoa, milk and sugar.  Cook on medium heat for 10 to 15 minutes and stir frequently to prevent scorching.  The milk will gradually absorb into the quinoa.


Once the pudding absorbs the liquid it's done.

Add sugar to the rest. When the pudding starts to thicken add vanilla.

Once the pudding has thickened, add in the vanilla and cook a couple more minutes.   Finally, (and this is optional) add about a tablespoon of butter and continue stirring until it melts.


We find our pudding is best when it is served cold so we refrigerate it about 30 to 60 minutes prior to serving.  You can add fresh fruit, nuts dates, raisins, whip cream, cinnamon or even a little chocolate syrup to jazz it up.


The consistency of this pudding reminds me a little of tapioca, but the taste is unique and delicious it it’s own right.  Best of all, I know I’m eating a dessert that’s really good for me.




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