Quinoa’s popularity definitely peaked about three years ago. Had I written this blog post circa 2012 I would have gone on and on about quinoa’s high protein content, it’s nutty flavor, and the correct pronunciation. By this point, I’m fairly certain, that you, the intelligent food blog reader, already know ALL about quinoa. But, have you ever had quinoa for breakfast? Total Game Changer.
I first had “breakfast quinoa” when hiking the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu in Peru. Every morning we were coaxed out of our warm tents into the blustering cold with a bowl of piping hot, cinnamony quinoa. Aside from the beautiful scenery and coming face to face with llamas and el pacas, this quinoa was one of my favorite parts of the hike. It is THAT good. The vanilla and cinnamon combined with the slightly sweetened, nutty quinoa make for the perfect breakfast delight. Throw in some fresh fruit, and bam, you have a well-balanced meal. Bonus, it will give you all the nutrients (both carbs and protein) to stay strong and hike for 4 hours if need be. If you’re not going for a hike, it can help keep you full in order to ward off those pesky break room snacks.
When cooking quinoa I like to give it a little dry toast first. This helps get rid of the saponin which can taste slightly bitter. You can also rinse it using a fine mesh strainer, but I don’t have one, so I choose option one. Another note on cooking it, most recipes recommend a 2:1 ratio of liquid to grain, it turns out less liquid is better. Your quinoa will be more fluffy and you won’t have to worry about over cooking it. I find the ratio of 1.5 cups liquid to 1 cup grain is best.
This post is sponsored by Almond Breeze Almond Milk.
- 1 cup dry quinoa
- 1.5 cups Almond Breeze Almond Milk Hint of Honey Vanilla
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- fresh cherries, pitted
- sliced almonds for topping
- 1-2 tsp honey or maple syrup (optional, sweeten to taste)
- Dry toast quinoa in a large sauce pan for 2 minutes over medium heat.
- Add almond milk to pan. Bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to a simmer and add cinnamon and vanilla. Stir to combine.
- Cover pan and simmer for 15-20 minutes until all liquid is absorbed.
- Add pitted cherries, almonds, additional almond milk and sweetener of choice.
- To serve warm heat in the microwave or over stove.