Recipes > Side > Cilantro Lime Quinoa

Cilantro Lime Quinoa

Build a cilantro lime quinoa bowl using our burrito bowl base recipe or serve it as a side alongside Mexican shredded chicken, Mexican fish, Moroccan salmon, Indian salmon with raita, or whatever else sounds good to you!
cilantro lime quinoa in a bowl topped with fresh lime

This is a variation of our fluffy quinoa base recipe. Switch up your cilantro lime rice with this this protein-rich cilantro lime quinoa! This recipe has just as much flavor, but boasts the health benefits of whole grain quinoa. 

Learn How to Make the Base Recipe

Three Must Know Cooking Skills

For recipe success, learn how to: 

Culinary Tips for Cilantro Lime Quinoa

Dry toast the quinoa in the pan for 2-3 minutes before adding the liquid to reduce quinoa’s natural bitterness and add a toasty nuttiness!

Follow the quinoa ratio of 1 part quinoa to 1 ½ parts water, broth, or stock. Many recipes suggest a 1:2 ratio, but we find that our ratio creates a better texture. If you want to cook more than 1 cup of quinoa, use the 1:1.5 ratio to determine how much liquid you will need.

Check the sodium content of the broth or stock before adding salt. If higher than 140 mg, consider eliminating or adding just a tiny pinch.

Cook the quinoa until the broth is just absorbed and a white ring pops out around the quinoa. If liquid remains after 15 minutes, re-cover the pan and continue to cook for a few minutes.

Once done, turn off the heat, then keep the lid on and allow the quinoa to rest for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork, then add the cilantro and lime juice.

Ingredient Substitutions

  • Quinoa: use any color – white, red, black, or multi-colored.
  • Broth: use homemade or store-bought vegetable or chicken broth or stock. If using store-bought, select low-sodium or no-added-salt varieties.
  • Cilantro: you could substitute another herb, such as parsley or chives, but then it wouldn’t be cilantro lime quinoa!
  • Lime Juice: we recommend using fresh, but you can substitute the bottled kind if needed.
  • Garlic: substitute ½ teaspoon pre-minced garlic, ½ teaspoon garlic flakes, ¼ teaspoon granulated garlic, or ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder.

Cilantro Lime Quinoa Recipe Variations

For an extra pop of flavor, add some fresh lime zest.

Want some quinoa recipe inspiration?

Use our fluffy quinoa base recipe as a guide to make it to your taste!

Equipment Recommendations

For guaranteed recipe success, use the following pieces of equipment:

Is this cilantro lime quinoa recipe healthy?

Quinoa

Quinoa is technically a seed, but because it is nutritionally comparable to whole grains, we group it alongside brown rice, farro, millet, etc. Quinoa is a unique plant protein source because it contains all 9 of the essential amino acids we need to get from food, making it a complete protein. (Most plant foods don’t have all 9.) Further, quinoa has a higher protein-to-carbohydrate ratio compared to other grains. 

Cilantro

Green herbs, like cilantro, not only add a pop of freshness and great flavor to a dish, but they add nutrition too! Herbs are rich in essential vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients that promote health and help fight diseases.

Lime Juice

Limes are high in vitamin C and antioxidants which support a healthy immune system. While using only the juice leaves the fiber behind, lime juice can still help fight inflammation and prevent chronic diseases. Further, using an acidic ingredient in a recipe reduces the need for salt, which can help reduce hypertension risk.

Serving Suggestions

Build a cilantro lime quinoa bowl using our burrito bowl base recipe or serve it as a side alongside Mexican shredded chicken, Mexican fish, Moroccan salmon, Indian salmon with raita, or whatever else sounds good to you! Pair with a side salad and/or roasted vegetables to make a balanced Whole Life Plate.  

Storage Recommendations

Cool quinoa completely, then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-5 days, depending on the freshness of the cilantro. To reheat, transfer to a microwave-safe dish and heat through.

Leftover quinoa is also great cold or tossed in a green salad!

You can also freeze cooked quinoa. Cool completely, then store in a freezer-safe container in bulk or single servings for up to 6 months.

Looking for more quinoa recipes?

Try out these delicious and nutritious recipes!

One Pan Mexican Quinoa Skillet

Pesto Quinoa Salad

Sweet Potato Quinoa Salad

cilantro lime quinoa in a bowl topped with fresh lime

Cilantro Lime Quinoa

This is a variation of our fluffy quinoa base recipe. Switch up your cilantro lime rice with this this protein-rich cilantro lime quinoa! This recipe has just as much flavor, but boasts the health benefits of whole grain quinoa.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Resting Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Side
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 3 cups

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 ½ cups low-sodium broth or stock
  • Salt to taste (~¼ teaspoon kosher salt recommended)
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 Tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 small garlic clove, minced (~½ teaspoon)

Instructions
 

  • Dry toast the quinoa in a small saucepan over medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add water or broth and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat.
  • Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until the liquid is absorbed (~15 minutes). Look for a white ring that pops out when the quinoa is cooked. Remove from heat and let rest, covered, for 10 minutes.
  • Uncover and fluff with a fork. Add chopped cilantro, lime juice, and garlic, and gently fold to combine. Enjoy!

Notes

Check the sodium content of the broth or stock before adding salt. If higher than 140 mg, consider eliminating or adding just a tiny pinch!
Keyword Cilantro Lime Quinoa

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