Spicy Tangy Quinoa Pulao/ Pilaf

Quinoa Pulao:


I am adding a small introduction to quinoa (pronounced as "kee-NO-wah"). Quinoa is a satisfying, low-cholesterol grain with heart-healthy polyunsaturated fats.1 cup cooked quinoa contains  185g: 222 cal, 39g carb, 4g fat, 8g protein, 5g fiber, iron 15% , good source Vitamin E, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese.( I can see some smiling faces... :)Most importantly it cooks and tastes very similar to rice.

 Quinoa can be eaten as a breakfast food to provide long-lasting energy to start a busy day. A meal of vegetables and quinoa: Quinoa pulao or pilaf, is a dieter’s dream. There are so many variations of this recipe. This is my way of making, spicy and tangy with soft cooked veggies. I will add some alteration for making different pulaos at the end of this article.
1 cups(more/less) diced veggies.
Quinoa 1 cup: rinsed 3-4 times and soaked for 30 min. I am using white quinoa.
1 medium onion diced.
1 tsp of ginger garlic minced. (optional)
2 medium green chilies(remove before after quinoa. 
juice from half a lemon or for taste. Vegetable are totally up to you choice. I added carrots, green beans, cauliflower, green peppers, potatoes. Spices:
  • cinnamon stick - 1
  • Bay leaves - 2
  • green cardamom - 3 
  • half a tsp of garam masala.
  • 1 tsp of chili powder or paprika powder(less spicy)
  • 1 tsp of cumin powder
  • half a tsp fennel powder
  • Half a tsp of turmeric.
Vegetable are totally up to you choice. I added carrots, green beans, cauliflower, green peppers, potatoes.
2 tbsp or less oil to saute the veggies. 

Heat the oil in a pan.

Add onions when the oil is hot. 

Add minced ginger, garlic, green chilies and
diced vegetables. 

When the veggies are well sauteed,add the masalas and salt.

Add 2 cups of water and bring it to boil. 

Add the washed quinoa.

After 15 min. 

Cook on medium heat for 30 min. Remove from heat, and let the quinoa rest for 5 more min. Add juice from half a lemon and remove from heat. 

Garnish with coriander. 


If you like having crunching veggies, first add the quinoa to the boiling water. When the quinoa is half way cooked then add the veggies.

Sangeetha Arivarignan Ganesh


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I started learning cooking from my grandmother, Mrs. Gunaseeli, who gave me her recipes and tips and some measurement tools for making them. The red measuring cup that I use in my recipes was once owned by my granny. My grandmother is very passionate about cooking and travel. She has written many cook books. This blog is one way to document her writing and to make it available for everyone.