Loaded with peppers, black beans, and seasonings, this One Pot Mexican Quinoa Recipe is bursting with delicious flavor and plant-based protein. Gluten-free and ready in less than 25 minutes, it’s filling enough to be a complete meal or perfect for a satisfying side!
Why We Love This Mexican Quinoa Recipe
If you’ve never had quinoa, prepare to have your entire world changed! Hearty and delicious, it’s a filling grain that’s so easy to make. Plus, when combined with warm spices and fresh veggies, it’s seriously delicious! However, those aren’t the only reasons why we love this Mexican Quinoa Recipe. It’s also:
- Made in one pot and requires minimal prep work or cleanup.
- Loaded with vitamins, nutrients, protein, and fiber!
- Easy to customize with extra protein, veggies, or toppings.
- Budget-friendly and great to prepare ahead of time.
What Is Quinoa?
If you’re unfamiliar, quinoa is a type of pseudograin. This means that it is consumed similarly to grains like rice, oats, or millet. However, it is actually a super nutrient-dense seed that is classified as a gluten-free whole grain and grown around the world. Quinoa is grown in three varieties including red, black, and white, and can be found in most grocery stores.
Is Mexican Quinoa Healthy?
Yes! Quinoa itself is a nutrient powerhouse and contains an abundance of vitamins and minerals including manganese, magnesium, phosphorous, and more. In addition, it’s high in fiber and contains all 9 essential amino acids, making it a complete source of plant-based protein. If you’re interested, you can read more about the benefits of quinoa here.
All that said, when combined with fresh veggies and black beans, Mexican quinoa is about as filling and nutritious as a recipe can get!
If we’re honest, this Mexican quinoa is a super easy recipe to clean out the fridge with. There’s not much that can’t be added! However, our version contains the following items:
- Quinoa – We use white quinoa, but feel free to swap out any variety you like best. They all have nearly identical nutritional information and extremely similar tastes.
- Seasonings – For the best Mexican-inspired flavor, we included taco seasoning, garlic, salt, and pepper.
- Veggies – We’re truly eating the rainbow with this one pot Mexican quinoa recipe including red onion, red chili peppers, green chilies, and diced tomatoes with chilis. Feel free to mix in whatever you have on hand!
- Lemon Juice – A squeeze of fresh lemon juice helps lighten up this dish for well-balanced flavors.
- Broth – We recommend opting for a low-sodium broth. Yet, no matter what you use, it’s guaranteed to create the best quinoa you’ll ever taste.
- Black Beans – Super affordable and easy to find, black beans are used to add an extra layer of texture, fiber, and an extra boost of plant-based protein.
How to Make the Best One Pot Mexican Quinoa Recipe
With its bright colors and bold flavors, this quinoa recipe appears complicated to make. Luckily, your guests will never know that it comes together in a single pot in just a matter of minutes!
- Add the quinoa and taco seasoning to a large pot on the stove.
- Pour in the remaining ingredients.
- Turn the heat to high, and boil. Then, cover the pot, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 16-18 minutes.
- Fluff the quinoa with a fork, and add your toppings of choice. We love cilantro, avocado, green onions, red pepper, and sour cream!
Variations and Additions
Feel free to get creative and spice up this recipe any way you’d like! It’s a great way to use up leftover veggies or protein. For example, some of our favorite additions include:
- Bell Peppers
- Shredded Cheese
This Mexican Quinoa Recipe makes for a hearty plant-based dish. However, it can also be served as a side with all your favorite main courses such as:
How Long Does this Recipe Last in the Fridge?
When fully cooled and stored in an airtight container, cooked quinoa will stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to 7 days.
Can I Freeze Mexican Quinoa?
We don’t recommend freezing this Mexican quinoa recipe once fully prepared. Instead, if you want to make it ahead of time, we recommend simply cooking the quinoa according to the package instructions. It can be frozen for up to 3 months. Then, when you’re ready to serve, just toss it together with the rest of the ingredients!
More Plant-Based Side Dish Recipes
Whether you’re following a plant-based diet or are just looking for nutritious options the whole family will be excited to eat, we’ve got some great options for you!
- This Stuffed Pepper Rice Bake is so simple and delicious, you’ll wonder why you never thought to make it before!
- Vegan roasted Eggplant Salad is a filling Mediterranean dish made with fresh ingredients and an irresistible tahini dressing.
- Made with a base of quinoa, this Southwest Salad is vibrant, zesty, and so delicious.
- Our One Pot Greek Couscous is nourishing, refreshing, and perfect to serve alongside all your favorite entrees.
One Pot Mexican Quinoa Recipe
- 1 1/2 cups white quinoa (rinsed and drained)
- 3 Tablespoons taco seasoning (or 1 packet)
- 1/2 cup red onion
- 1/4 cup red chili peppers (optional)
- 1/4 cup green pepper
- 1 (4 ounce) can green chilies
- 14 ounces canned diced tomatoes with chilis, such as Rotel
- 4 cloves garlic
- lemon juice
- 1 1/2 cups low-sodium broth
- Kosher salt to taste
- Black pepper to taste
- 1 (15 ounce) canned black beans, rinsed and drained
- Optional garnish: cilantro, avocado, green onions, red pepper, and sour cream
- Heat a 12-inch skillet (be sure it has a lid) or large pot over medium-high heat. Add quinoa and taco seasoning.
- Add the remaining ingredients. Stir to combine.
- Bring to a boil. Then, cover, and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 16-18 minutes or utnil the liquid has been absorbed.
- Fluff the quinoa with a fork. Garnish with fresh cilantro, avocado, green onion and sour cream, if desired.