Recipe: Parmesan Garlic Quinoa

I've been at it again--another pinterest recipe, and this one was a spur of the moment trial, since I didn't know what I wanted for dinner, MG was out of town, and I realized I had everything on hand to make this dish.

Now, the original website claims that you'll never eat Mac and Cheese again.
I strongly disagree. 
Don't get me wrong, this is still a yummy dish, but it doesn't even come close to a mac and cheese-like dish. At all. It has more of an Italian pasta type of taste because of the basil, so keep that in mind when/if you make this. I was a little disappointed cuz I was hoping for Mac and Cheese and it just wasn't in that category.

Anyway, let's get to this recipe. It's really easy.

What You Need

-1 cup quinoa, rinsed if needed
-2 cups water
-1 tsp minced chopped garlic from a jar (or 2 cloves chopped)
-1 medium white onion, chopped
-1 Tbsp. olive oil
-2 tsp. dried basil
-1/2 tsp. each of salt, black pepper, red pepper flakes
-1/2 cup parmesan cheese, divided

For me, this made a little more than 2 good-sized portions.

What You Do

1. Rinse the quinoa if you need to. Mine was organic and already rinsed. Easy peasy.
2. Heat up the oil in a medium-large sauce pan. Add in the onions and saute for about 4-5 minutes. Add in the minced garlic and allow it to heat up for about a minute. Make sure you stir it so that the garlic doesn't burn.

3. Add in the water and quinoa and bring it to a boil. Once boiling, lower the heat, cover the pot and let simmer for 10-15 minutes (follow the directions on your quinoa. Mine took 15 minutes).
You'll know it's done when the tails of the quinoa pop and there's very little liquid left.
(tried to give you a close-up in the last picture so you know what it looks like)
4. Mix in your salt, black pepper, red pepper flakes, and 1/3 cup of parmesan cheese. If you like it more creamy, you can add in more cheese (I added in a little bit of cheddar cheese into it once I tried it, to make it a little more cheesy).

5. Serve it up! Add some black pepper and parmesan cheese on top for garnish.

Let me know what you think if you try it! I ate this as a main dish with a side salad and was full, but I could easily see this as a side dish, too. Then you could get a little more serving size out of it in slightly smaller portions.

Hope you like it!


  1. For some reason, I am completely terrified of quinoa. I guess because it's just something that I have never made and don't know what to expect...Guess I need to branch out a little and try it, because goodness knows, I am always looking for good side dishes to serve. I have such a hard time coming up with sides! Meal planning can be tough!!!

  2. Side dish. You know how I feel about that.

  3. Glad you tried my recipe!! Haha sorry it didn't deliver in the Mac&Cheese category- you're right- it is a little more italian with the basil in it! Hope you enjoyed it anyway! The real link (instead of the canopi one) for the recipe is here :

    Beauty and the Beard


I LOVE hearing your thoughts and comments--so, make my day and leave me some lovin'!