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Zesty Instant Pot Quinoa {Vegan Quinoa Recipe}

This Instant Pot Quinoa is so flavorful and cooks in only one minute! A delicious quinoa side dish that is full of crunchy veggies and a zesty flavor. If you skip cooking quinoa because it takes too long, you’ll love how fast pressure cooker quinoa comes together.

a bowl of instant pot quinoa with veggies on a white board with lime and cilantro

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If you are a quinoa hater, like I used to be, I’d highly recommend you give this one a try before writing it off completely. This dish is inexpensive to make, it produces a ton of food, and it’s perfect for when you don’t want to heat up your house by using the oven for more complex side dishes.

two photos showing toasted quinoa

two photos cooking quinoa in a pressure cooker

3 photos of a cold quinoa salad

If you love fast grain recipes, check out my posts on Instant Pot Farro and Instant Pot Parmesan Garlic Rice. If you are new to pressure cooking and the Instant Pot, check out this post on recipes for Instant Pot beginners.

Pro Tips/Recipe Notes

  • You can skip the toasting step if you’re short on time. It adds a great flavor but it’s not necessary.
  • You can still toast the rinsed quinoa. It takes an extra minute for it to dry out before the toasting process starts.
  • If you want to double or even triple the batch, the cooking time remains the same.
  • Double the batch and set some plain quinoa aside for future meals. Cooked side dishes are an important part of our freezer essentials because they make our easy healthy meal prep even faster. If you store servings of quinoa in silicone bags, you can even reheat directly in the bag.
  • Canadian Golden Quinoa will not produce good results in the instant pot. It is much too mushy to use in a pressure cooker.

More Vegetable Side Dishes

cold quinoa salad in a bowl

Zesty Instant Pot Quinoa WEIGHT WATCHERS POINTS

One serving has 4 WW Freestyle SmartPoints.

a bowl of instant pot quinoa with veggies on a white board with lime and cilantro
Print Recipe
5 from 19 votes

Zesty Instant Pot Quinoa {Vegan Quinoa Recipe}

Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time30 mins
This Instant Pot Quinoa is so flavorful and cooks in only one minute! A delicious quinoa side dish that is full of crunchy veggies and a zesty flavor.

Ingredients

Salad Fixin's

  • 2 cups quinoa
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 carrots diced
  • 1 stalk celery diced
  • 1/2 cup frozen edamame thawed
  • 3 green onions sliced small (I love green onions.  If you don't, reduce to 1 or 2)
  • 1 small cucumber, chopped
  • Few sprigs of cilantro

Seasoning

Instructions

  • In a fine-mesh sieve, rinse the quinoa under cool running water.

Instant Pot Directions

  • Turn your Instant Pot to saute.
  • Add the olive oil and quinoa. Stir to toast for 5-8 minutes, or until you can smell the nutty undertones.
  • Add the broth. Stir. 
  • Secure the lid, and turn the lever to "sealing". Use the manual setting and press the pressure button until it is on "high". Set the timer for 1 minute.
  • Once it has finished cooking, the Instant Pot will beep and start counting down. If it hasn't naturally depressurized within 15 minutes, carefully turn the lever to "venting" and allow it depressurize.
  • Add the veggies and cilantro to the instant pot. Pour in the sauce and stir to combine. Store in the fridge.

Stove Top Directions

  • In a heavy saucepan, like a dutch oven, add the olive oil over medium heat.  Add the quinoa and toast for 5-8 minutes, or until you can smell the nutty undertones from the pan.
  • Add the broth and stir to combine.  Bring to a boil for 1 minute, and then reduce to a lower heat.  Put the lid on, and cook for 15 minutes, or until the liquid is completely absorbed.  Let cool.
  • Meanwhile, dice your veg and mix up your sauce.  Once the quinoa has cooked, add the veggies and cilantro and stir to combine.  Store in the fridge.

Notes

Skip the toasting step if you're short on time. 
 
If you want to double or even triple the batch, the cooking time remains the same.
 
Canadian Golden Quinoa will not produce good results in the instant pot. It is much too mushy to use in a pressure cooker.
Nutrition Facts
Zesty Instant Pot Quinoa {Vegan Quinoa Recipe}
Amount Per Serving (0.25 cup)
Calories 127
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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16 comments on “Zesty Instant Pot Quinoa {Vegan Quinoa Recipe}”

  1. How can you not love Quinoa? It’s so innocuous! I must say it smells not great when just boiled… but it’s easy enough to disguise the smell…. this recipe looks good though, almost like a risotto style of cooking it… will give it a shot! thanks.
    5 stars

  2. Just wanted to add my voice to the rinse it! category. But maybe not – I always rinsed my quinoa, and still developed an allergy to it. (If you family members or you eats quinoa and has an upset stomach after – beware!) My twin never rinses hers and has no problems. YMMV!5 stars

  3. I will have to give this a try! I don’t love quinoa, but I don’t hate it. This recipe is pretty baller: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/quinoa-and-black-beans/. I do find that no matter what you do with the stuff, it always looks like dog food. . . nom nom.5 stars

  4. I too have always been a hater of quinoa but this recipe sounds so good that I just might give it a try.5 stars

  5. I’ve had a bag of quinoa in my pantry for months and haven’t done a thing with it. All the recipes I find that sound good have “cheesy” in the title, which doesn’t work for my dairy-free husband. I’ll have to try this out!5 stars

  6. The key to quinoa is adding plenty of flavorful ingredients! My favorite quinoa recipe is this one. http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Southwestern-Quinoa-Salad/ Toastigg it the way you did in your recipe makes a big difference, too, I think. (And yes – rinsed quinoa can still be toasted. It dries out first, then toasts up nicely.)

  7. Sarah, this sounds like a winner! It took a lot of coaxing to get me to like it too. Oh, when I researched, I found that you want to rinse quinoa quite well first. It has bitter, somewhat-toxic saponins in it (which keep birds from eating it), so you rinse under water for a full minute or so first. Thought you might like to know! (I think the rinsed, drained quinoa would still toast in the pan- it might just take a tad longer…)5 stars

  8. I refuuuuuuuuse.

    Ok. Maybe I’ll try it if I get close enough to the quinoa aisle to check the prices (and if the prices are right). Sweet chili sauce is a weakness of mine.

  9. Quinoa also “sticks” with you for a long time! It’s nice and filling! Can’t wait to try this recipe out! Sarah–you’re amazing! 🙂5 stars

  10. Definitely rinse it before you toast it – it gets that nasty coating off.