CHIPOTLE QUINOA – A HEALTHY MEXICAN-INSPIRED SIDE DISH

Quinoa has only become a staple household ingredient in the past few years. Hailing from Peru and Bolivia, we’ve added this unique seed into our grain line up right next to rice and millet. Quinoa is unusual in that it is considered a complete protein, a rare feat for a plant-based food. Some also believe it to be a superfood, boasting substantial amounts of essential amino acids, vitamins and minerals. In any case, I get bored easily and appreciate any new starch-like gluten free grain that comes my way. With that said, there are an endless amount of ways to prepare this stuff. The most highly requested dish that I make with quinoa is my signature CHIPOTLE QUINOA. Lets just get this out of the way…I love anything chipotle flavored. ANYTHING. Get used to that! Without further ado…

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Chipotle Quinoa w/ Chipotle Aioli


organic quinoa, rinsed (white preferred for color reasons!)

organic fire roasted diced tomatoes (I like Muir Glen/Jovial/or BioNaturae brands in GLASS containers to avoid BPA)

organic veggie or chicken stock (best kinds: homemade, Whole Foods 365 brand, or Trader Joes)

1/4 can of chipotle in adobo sauce, chopped

bell peppers, diced fine

organic fire roasted corn kernals (either your own grilled corn off the cob, or thawed frozen – WF’s sells a great organic frozen one)

scallions, thinly sliced

organic fresh tomatoes, chopped

organic baby spinach, finely sliced

avocado, in chunks, mashed or slices

garlic salt

onion powder

smoked paprika

1-2 bay leaves

EVOO or grapeseed oil

For Vegan Chipotle Aioli:

soy-free vegenaise (this stuff is seriously my favorite!) or an organic, high quality mayonnaise

chipotle in adobo, chopped and to taste – this can get spicy so add a little at a time

squeeze of lime juice

General Recipe


Rinse your quinoa, and add to a pot. Instead of water, use your choice of stock and about 1 container of the tomatoes until your quinoa:liquid ratio is 1:2. Add your bay leaves and start heating to a boil. Season the water with your garlic salt, onion powder, paprika, and chipotle in adobo. Add a little oil and stir. Once it is boiling, turn down to a low simmer and cover. Cook, and occasionally uncover and stir to check that all the liquid is gone and quinoa is not sticking to the bottom. Take off the heat. Remove bay leaves and add diced peppers, corn, scallions, and spinach.

In a small bowl, mix several spoonfuls vegenaise/mayo with the chopped chipotle in adobo, and squeeze a little lime juice into it. Mix, taste and make sure its spicy to your liking.

Serve the quinoa cold, room temperature or warm. Garnish with chopped tomatoes, avocado, scallions and a dollop of the chipotle aioli.

This makes for a great healthy, mexican-inspired side dish!

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