Quinoa may be indigenous to South America but has quickly grown popular in the United States too. The versatile grain can be cooked in a number of ways and contains a treasure trove of nutrients. I love experimenting with quinoa to innovate some recipes but today I decided to make a traditional dish. Join me as I cook the traditional Peruvian Quinoa recipe. It’s my favorite stew to make, after the lentil stew.  So let’s begin!

Traditional Peruvian Quinoa Stew

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Side Dish, Stew
Cuisine Peruvian
Servings 4
Calories 194 kcal


  • 1/2 cup quinoa
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 1 carrot, cut on the diagonal into ¼ inch thick slices
  • 1 bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup cubed zucchini
  • 2 cups undrained chopped fresh or canned tomatoes
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder, or more to taste
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • Pinch of cayenne, or more to taste
  • 2 tsp fresh oregano, or dried oregano
  • Salt to taste
  • Chopped fresh cilantro, or mint (optional)
  • Grated cheddar, or Monterey Jack cheese


  • Rinse the quinoa well with cold water 
  • Place the water and quinoa in a covered pot and cook it on medium-low heat for around 15 minutes till it's soft
  • While the quinoa is cooking, take a soup pot and add garlic, onions, and vegetable oil
  • Sauté on medium heat for 5 to 8 minutes or until slightly caramelized
  • Add celery and carrots to the soup pot and cook for an additional 5 minutes, stirring often
  • Add bell peppers, zucchini, tomatoes, and one cup of water or vegetable soup to the soup pot 
  • Stir in cumin, chili powder, coriander, cayenne, and oregano to the soup pot 
  • Leave it to simmer for 10 to 15 minutes in the covered pot until the vegetables are tender
  • Stir in cooked quinoa and salt (to taste) 
  • Top with cilantro and grated cheese, if desired, and serve immediately 
  • Enjoy it hot! 
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Hot steamy traditional Peruvian quinoa recipe stew is ready to be served! 

Why You Need to Incorporate Quinoa in your Diet

  • Quinoa is an extremely nutrient rich grain. It’s a rich source of plant protein, making it the perfect substitute for lentils and meat. For vegan and vegetarian diets, quinoa has become an essential grain.
  • Quinoa is also rich in fiber. Fiber-rich foods help manage constipation, cholesterol and help manage intestinal health.
  • For weight watchers, quinoa is a superfood due to its rich provisions of fiber and protein. Eating quinoa makes you feel full for longer, reducing the need and craving for food. Protein helps to build muscle mass and repair injuries, as you work out to lose fat and shed some pounds. 
  • There are numerous varieties of quinoa, and these can be used in multiple recipes in various ways. We assure you that getting bored of eating quinoa is almost impossible! 

Try Out These Quinoa Dishes

For all you quinoa lovers out there, here is my assortment of some of the scrumptious quinoa dishes I’m in love with. Be sure to try them out. Most of these are also the perfect meal inspirations for people having only vegan or vegetarian diets

  • Dabble with some guilt-free cravings with my absolute favorite quinoa mac and cheese. Who doesn’t love mac and cheese? Now you too can splurge, even on a diet, with this amazing healthy recipe!
  • Quinoa and brown rice are the perfect main course for when you need a filling meal that satisfies you completely. This spicy and yummy dish is loaded with chicken and quinoa, filling you up with proteins while also adding some carbs to satiate your carb cravings without any guilt! 
  • The yummy quinoa burritos are my favorite wraps to turn to after a busy day. They take very little time to prepare and bursting flavors are sure to fill you up, but also keep it light. You can pair it up with some hummus and a spinach or kale salad to make it a hearty dinner meal. 
  • Craving some pasta while on a diet? Go with the quinoa pasta that is sure to leave you licking your fingers and wanting more. 
  • If you want to incorporate quinoa into salads, we have some great recipes for that too! Check out our quinoa chickpea bowl and the quinoa salad

These are just a few of my top suggestions. The bonus is that these are all healthy-diet-friendly so if you’re looking to restrict calories, you can still eat these to your heart’s content. So, don’t wait too long to try out this super nutritious food. I guarantee you, it’ll soon be a must-have on your grocery list!