Quinoa Pulao

Quinoa is a very popular health food that is rich in protein, fibre, iron, potassium and what not! This super food is gluten free and non GMO grain.


I got to know about quinoa only after shifting to USA and my first try was a store bought instant cook flavored quinoa . But it tasted so bad that we resisted eating it after the first experience.

I didn’t want to give up after the first try. I decided to give an Indian twist to quinoa and bingo! It turned out to be very delicious 🙂

Here is one recipe which turns out absolutely perfect and delicious 😀



P.S : I used instapot for making this. But you can also use an electric rice cooker or use exact same recipe in a normal pressure cooker by cooking for just 2 whistles on high.


Quinoa – 2 cups

Water – 3.25 cups

Ginger – 1/4 inch – chopped finely

Garlic – 1 Clove – chopped finely

Curry leaves – few

Salt – to taste

To grind:

Coriander leaves – 1/2 bunch

Mint leaves – few (about 3-4)

Green chillies – 2

Tamarind paste – 1/4 tsp

Sugar – 1/4 tsp (to retain the color of the paste after grinding)

For tempering:

Oil / ghee – 1 tbsp

Cumin seeds – 1 tsp

Peppercorns – 1/2 tsp

Cloves – 2

Cinnamon – 1/2 inch stick

Bay leaf – 1

Star anise – 1

Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp

Urad dal – 1/2 tsp

Peanuts / raw groundnuts – a handful

Dry red chillies – 2


Grind together the ingredients mentioned under ‘To grind’ section using little water. Keep it aside.

In an instapot (sauté mode on normal heat) or rice cooker or normal pressure cooker, heat oil on medium heat.

Add cumin seeds, peppercorns, cloves, cinnamon, star anise, bay leaf, mustard seeds and urad dal. Sauté well till done.

Then add the ginger, garlic, curry leaves, peanuts and dry red chillies. Sauté for 3-4 minutes or till the peanuts are roasted and the raw smell of the garlic is gone.

Now add the ground paste and sauté till the raw smell fades away.

At this point add the washed quinoa, salt and mix well.

Add the required amount of water, mix well and check for salt.


If using instapot, turn off sauté mode, close the lid and cook the Quinoa in manual, high pressure for 8 minutes (Natural release).


Note: if using rice cooker, just cook as you do for the rice.

Once done, serve hot with onion-tomato raita 🙂



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