An Easy Swap

Tired of rice?  Why not try quinoa?  This seed is a true gem in the nutritional department and makes a great replacement for most recipes that call for rice.  What makes it so amazing?  Besides being one of the few plant sources that is considered a complete protein (a real plus for Vegetarians!), it’s loaded with fiber, iron and magnesium.  Another reason to love it?  It’s easy to prepare and only takes about 15-20 minutes to cook. Need some recipe inspiration?  The recipe below is simple and versatile.  It’s delicious as a side dish for any Mexican meal or can be used as a filler for tacos or burritos or even as a topping for a taco salad. Looking to get more mileage out of this recipe?  Amp up the flavor by adding more cilantro along with some chopped green onions.  Want a spicier version?  Try dicing up a jalapeno and cook it along with the cumin.  Need a more satisfying dish?  Stir in black beans, grape tomatoes and corn to make a hearty salad…really the options are endless!  


Quinoa with Cumin and Lime

  • Author: Sara Haas


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed thoroughly
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 lime, juice and zest
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


  1. Set a medium saucepan over medium-high heat and add the olive oil. Once the oil is hot, add the quinoa and toast for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add cumin and continue to stir, cooking an additional minute. Add the water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until quinoa is cooked, about 15-20 minutes.
  2. Drain any excess water. Add the lime juice and zest, cilantro, salt and pepper and toss until well combined.


  • Serving Size: 8
  • Calories: 96
  • Sugar: 0
  • Sodium: 23
  • Fat: 3
  • Saturated Fat: 0
  • Unsaturated Fat: 2
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 15
  • Protein: 3
  • Cholesterol: 0