Quinoa Pulao

Nutritious Quinoa Pulao with vegetables. One pot, gluten-free and vegan meal for quick meals or lunchboxes.

Quinoa (pronounced as kee-wah) is one of the ancient grains and is very popular these days especially among the people who want to avoid rice. It is also known as the superfood of the future.  Quinoa is a complete protein as it is loaded with all the 9 essential amino acids. A rich source of iron, magnesium, and riboflavin which is known to improve the energy levels in brain and muscle cells.

This grain is a native of South America(Peru) and was discovered  4-5 thousand years ago. These days lot of people have started eating it. We use it in salads, soups and as an alternative to rice.

Quinoa for Everyday Meals

In short, from salads, to sides , from breakfast to main it can form an integral part of your everyday meal.  Many of my friends have included Quinoa and other ancient grains in their diet.Till now somehow I have not included these grains in my everyday meal. Though I got packs of quinoa, black rice and couscous for trying out, but I still believe in having my typical North Indian meal of Dal, Roti,Subzi and Chawal(rice ). I know these are the healthy options to carbohydrate rich Rice , but somehow rice is still the ‘to go’ meal for me. I like to have quinoa once in a while in my salads or when I want to have  break from my usual rice eating routine or use to make burger patties with red beans. Rajeev and kids do not like it much except they have it in form of burger patties.

I like this Quinoa pulao, so thought of posting for the letter Q. It is made by cooking quinoa with veggies in Indian spices, just like the way we cook Rice Pulao.

Cooking Method to make Quinoa Pulao

It is a one pot meal, and can be prepared within 20 minutes when cooked in pressure cooker or Instant Pot. A perfect wholesome meal for packing in lunch box. Cooking Quinoa in open pan can take long time  as the grain takes time to cook. Pressure cooking reduces the time and also retains the nutrients which can be destroyed with overcooking of the grain.

Let’s see how I make this Quinoa Pulao..

Quinoa Pulao can be made just like the way we make Mixed Veg. Pulao. I do not use whole spices in preparing it.You can add paneer/tofu or soya chunks along with the vegetables.

If you see the stepwise pics, I have not used the onions and tomatoes in the recipe, I have used my homemade bhuna masala(onion-ginger and garlic masala) that I keep ready for making quick curries and dals. But in the recipe I have given the amount of onions and tomatoes to be used in the recipe.

Quinoa Pulao

Healthy and Gluten-free Quinoa cooked with vegetable like carrots, corn, peas. Learn how to make Quinoa on Stove-top Pressure Cooker 
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main
Cuisine Fusion, Indian
Servings 2


  • 1/2 Cup Quinoa
  • 1/4 Cup Mixed Vegetables
  • 1/2 Onion finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp Ginger-Garlic Paste
  • 1 Tomato
  • 1/2 tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 tbsp Oil
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds


  • Wash Quinoa very nicely in running tap water, till it  is clear.
  • In pressure cooker, add oil.  Add cumin seeds when the oil  is hot enough.When seeds crackle, add ginger garlic paste. When the raw smell of garlic goes away, add onions and saute till translucent.
  • Add finely chopped tomatoes or tomato puree. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add vegetables saute for few seconds.
  • Add quinoa and water . For 1/2 Cup quinoa add 1 cup water. Add asalt and garam masala.
  • Cover the lid and cook for 3-4 whistles on medium flame.
  • Quinoa is cooked when the grains become translucent, and you can see tiny sprouts on the cooked grain. Fluff with fork and serve hot with chutney or raita or curry of your choice.


I have used Onion-Garlic-Ginger masala that I keep ready in my refrigerator for preparing quick meals. You can use Bhuna Masala for the same.
I have used Tomato puree, you can use wither puree or finely chopped fresh tomatoes.
I do not use whole spices like bay leaf and cardamoms that are used in making Pulao or biryani. You can add these with cumin seeds.
Keyword Fasting Food, Gluten-free,Vegan, Fried Food, Healthy Food, Pulao recipes, Quinoa

Do make this wonderful Pulao and add a royal touch to your menu. SO perfect for the festivals and special occasions. The rice is so rich and full in flavours that my 7yr old loves to have it just like that, without any curry or dal.

So make some creamy gravy and enjoy this rice with some boondi raita  side.

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This is 16th in my series of A-Z Biryani/Pulao/Khichdi dishes, that I am taking to Mega Blogging Marathon April’19.

Day 17. Q.. Quinoa Pulao

This is an event where I along with a group of fellow bloggers are blogging everyday about Biryani/Pulao/Khichdi dishes this whole April, with Sundays off.

My earlier posts for the event..

Day 1. A.. Aloo Matar Ki Tehri

Day 2.  B..Broccoli Mushroom Pulao

Day 3 . C..Chana Dal Khichdi

Day 4. D..Dhaniya Pulao

Day 5. E.. Easy Steamed Rice in Instant Pot with Pot in Pot Method

Day 6. F.. Fresh Mint and Peas Pulao

Day 7. G.. Gatte Ka Pulao

Day 8. H.. Hari Moong Dal Khichdi

Day 9. I.. Iyengar Puliyogare(Instant)

Day 10. J.. Jeera Rice

Day 11. K.. Kashmiri Pulao

Day 12. L.. Lucknowi Veg. Dum Biryani

Day 13. M..Mixed Veg Pulao

Day 14. N.. No-Onion No-Garlic Kadhai Paneer Pulao

Day 15. O.. Oats and Moong Dal Khichdi

Day 16. P. Pearl Pulao


Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#99

Author: Swati

Some who believes 'EAT WELL, READ DAILY, TRAVEL OFTEN AND LAUGH KHUL KE'!!! Hi!! Swati here!!! Chef, Chocolatier, food admirer, reader, love to travel, listen to music, Bollywood and shoot nature and food pics!! Welcome to my Foodtrails and join me in my food adventure!!

16 thoughts

  1. Wonderful pic for the letter Q and an awesome healthy share loaded with nutrients.

  2. I guess this is the most popular one for the day! Even I made something like this..very nicely done.

  3. Good pick. This is one of the first dishes I tried with Quinoa years ago and haven’t made it since 🙂 Your version sounds delicious

  4. Quinoa is the perfect choice for the alphabet , the pulao looks wholesome and healthy . Well even we haven’t really included this grain in our daily diet , but yes it is one healthy one that should be included .

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