This simple no-fuss recipe for quinoa showcases the simplicity of pressure cooking. Once you learn the basics, you’ll discover that an electric pressure cooker is not as complicated as it looks and is less hands-on than traditional cooking on the stovetop.

The hardest part about quinoa is learning to pronounce it. KEEN-wah. It’s indigenous to the Andean mountains of South America

Quinoa is actually a seed–that’s why it’s so nutritious and high in protein. But we commonly use it as a grain, often as a naturally gluten-free substitute for rice.

Most brands rinse quinoa before packaging to remove the saponin–a bitter substance that coats the outside of the seed and keeps birds and insects from eating it. Even though I don’t have to, I prefer to rinse quinoa every time I cook it in order to keep the quinoa-to-water ratio consistent.

How to Cook Quinoa in the Instant Pot

Here are the super simple baby steps:

  1. Use a fine-mesh strainer to rinse the quinoa Drain thoroughly.
  2. Stir water, quinoa, and salt together in a pressure cooker.
  3. Secure the lid and move the pressure release valve to the sealed position.
  4. Select the Pressure Cook/Manual setting and set for 1 minute.
  5. When cooking is completed, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes.
  6. Quick-release any remaining pressure. Carefully remove the lid.

cooked quinoa in Instant Pot7. Fluff with a fork. Serve immediately or transfer to a dinner plate to cool.

quinoa cooling on a plate8. Refrigerate in a covered container for up to 1 week. Freeze for longer storage.

Variations

  • Stove Top: Heat 1½ cups water and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Stir in quinoa. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer 15-20 minutes, until quinoa is tender, and liquid is absorbed. Remove from the heat and proceed with the remainder of the recipe.
  • Toasted Quinoa: After rinsing the quinoa, use the sauté function of the electric pressure cooker or a dry skillet to toast the quinoa until fragrant, about 3-4 minutes. Proceed with the remainder of the recipe.

Tips for Cooking Quinoa

  • For 2 cups quinoa, use 2¼ cups water.
  • Adjust the ratio of water to suit your preference.

How to Serve Quinoa

  • Serve with beans.
  • Use instead of rice with stir fry.
  • For quick breakfast cereal, heat cooked quinoa with plant milk in a small saucepan until heated through. If desired, top with chopped nuts, chia seeds, and fresh fruit.
  • Make Quinoa Salad with Toasted Pecans.
  • Make gluten-free quinoa tabbouleh using cooked quinoa instead of bulgur wheat.
  • Make Asian-style Veggie Power Bowls™ with quinoa, napa cabbage, broiled tofu, cucumber, and Peanut Sauce or Sesame-Ginger Dressing.
raw and cooked quinoa
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Instant Pot Quinoa

This simple no-fuss quinoa recipe showcases the simplicity of Instant Pot cooking. Once you learn the basics, you’ll discover that an electric pressure cooker is not as complicated as it looks and is less hands-on than traditional cooking on the stovetop.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time1 min
Pressure Cooker Time20 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: dairy-free, gluten-free, oil-free, plant-based, vegan, vegetarian, WFPB
Servings: 6
Calories: 104kcal
Author: Heather Reseck

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • cups water
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Rinse quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer; drain thoroughly.
  • Stir water, quinoa, and salt together in an Instant Pot or electric pressure cooker. Secure the lid and move the pressure release valve to the sealed position. Select the Pressure Cook/Manual setting and set for 1 minute.
  • When cooking is completed, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes. Quick-release any remaining pressure. Carefully remove the lid.
  • Fluff with a fork. Serve immediately or transfer to a dinner plate to cool.
  • Refrigerate in a covered container for up to 1 week. Freeze for longer storage. Makes 3 cups.

Notes

Variations:
Stove Top: Heat 1½ cups water and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Stir in quinoa. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer 15-20 minutes, until quinoa is tender, and liquid is absorbed. Remove from the heat and proceed with the remainder of the recipe.
Toasted Quinoa: After rinsing the quinoa, use the sauté function of the electric pressure cooker or a dry skillet to toast the quinoa until fragrant, about 3-4 minutes. Proceed with the remainder of the recipe.
Tips:
  • To pressure cook 2 cups quinoa, use 2¼ cups water.
  • Adjust the ratio of water to suit your preferences. Some people prefer a 1:1 ratio.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.5cup | Calories: 104kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 198mg | Potassium: 160mg | Fiber: 2g | Calcium: 13mg | Iron: 1mg