Thursday, May 12, 2011

Black Bean, Tomato and Avocado Quinoa

Quinoa is our new favorite dinner side dish. I had read great things about it but just never cooked it. Dirk is pretty picky so I was worried when he came home and said, "What is that?" I hesitantly explained what it was, I was worried he'd write it off but instead it's his new favorite food.

Why should you try it? It's considered a "superfood." According to Men's Health it's the world's most nutritious grain. It's a complete protein and is also a good source of manganese, magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorus, along with other things. Plus it's yummy!

Here's the recipe for our favorite way to prepare it. The picture doesn't show avocado in the quinoa because we were having avocado on our chicken and didn't want to overdo it, but the avocado tastes amazing in this recipe! If you love quinoa I'd love to hear how you make it!

Black Bean, Tomato & Avocado Quinoa
adapted from this epicurious recipe

yield: 4 side dish servings

2 teaspoons grated lime zest
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup quinoa
1 (14- to 15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 medium tomato, diced
1 avocado, chopped
4 scallions, chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Wash quinoa in 3 changes of cold water in a bowl, draining in a sieve each time.

Cook quinoa in a medium pot of boiling salted water (1 tablespoon salt for 2 quarts water), uncovered, until almost tender, about 10 minutes.

While the quinoa is cooking, whisk together lime zest and juice, butter, oil, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4teaspoon pepper in a large bowl.

Drain in sieve, then set sieve in same pot with 1 inch of simmering water (water should not touch bottom of sieve).

Cover quinoa with a folded kitchen towel, then cover sieve with a lid (don't worry if lid doesn't fit tightly) and steam over medium heat until tender, fluffy, and dry, about 10 minutes.

Remove pot from heat and remove lid. Let stand, still covered with towel, 5 minutes.

Add quinoa to dressing and toss until dressing is absorbed, then stir in remaining ingredients and salt and pepper to taste.

Side note: you can prepare the quinoa according to package directions which is a little eaiser, however this method allows for the quinoa to dry up a little which allows for a better consistency.


  1. I just bought some quinoa, so I'll have to try it! Looks yummy! And the best thing about quinoa, is that it's completely gluten free!!

  2. Dropping by from the Alexa hop! Love the bright pink and blue ultimate playdate. Makes for great photos!

  3. I have a similar recipe I make using red quinoa. It uses avocado, red onion, tomatoes, lime juice, black beans and cilantro. It's delicious!

  4. This sounds so yummy, I am going to try it this weekend!