Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa

Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa

Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa brings a nice touch of color, a punch of flavor, and a boost of nutrition to any meal.

This week I made a plan, a very purposeful plan. I decided that if I really wanted to make room in my life for God, fitness, writing, cooking, my husband, and my son, then I needed to live every day intentionally. Sunday morning I made charts and printed off calendars and posted them on the refrigerator door. I was even planning on attempting to skip my beloved morning coffee. I’d just take Jackson for a brisk walk instead.

As life goes, after church Sunday evening Jackson started running his first ever fever and was up most of the night. Then Monday morning at 7:50 am, my door bell rang. I hurried out of my pjs and into a t-shirt and sweats and threw my wild morning curls into a bun. I carried Jackson, still in his pjs, with me to the door, and we were greeted by a girl in her young 20s who looked like her morning routine had closely resembled mine, except she’d thrown on some scrubs instead of sweats.

“I’m here to give you your physical for the life insurance policy,” she said.

My husband had attempted to postpone this appointment, since he realized last minute he couldn’t be there. Apparently they didn’t get the memo. So there I was left alone to answer 4,000 questions about what disease I may or may not have contracted, pee in a cup (I wonder how many times can I talk about peeing on our food blog!), and have my blood drawn as I tried to keep Jackson entertained and contained.

The visit couldn’t have been less pleasant or less awkward. Taking my blood took two tries, leaving one arm bruised and still sore three days later. Apparently, you don’t need any social skills, hygiene, or experience with needles to be an in-home nurse for this company.

My actual plan for the day had included creating a menu for the week and going grocery shopping. With a feverish baby and one immobile arm, I decided productivity was going to have to wait. Which meant whipping up something for dinner out of a few staples in the kitchen. I usually have a block of tofu (I’m not crazy for tofu, so it’s always waiting for me as I get down to the last of my groceries), some sort of veggies left in the crisper, a jar of roasted red peppers, and a box of pre-rinsed quinoa (pronounced keen-wah).

So I made Everything Tofu (tofu coated in sesame seeds, poppy seeds, onion flakes, and garlic powder) topped with a chive Tofutti cream cheese sauce, a simple side of steamed broccoli, and my latest go-to side dish, roasted red pepper quinoa. It’s so easy and with my rice maker it basically cooks itself while I get the rest of dinner made.

The tofu was actually pretty good, but a lot of work. I would have been just as happy with a whole plate of this quinoa and a little broccoli. I immediately regretted not making more (so I’ve doubled the recipe for you guys!)

Tuesday, after another rough night with Jackson, I woke to a clogged milk duct along with a side of fever. Thankfully, we were back to our healthy selves by Wednesday. There is nothing like feeling sick and sleep deprived to make me thankful for a decent night’s rest and my good health. Maybe I’ll even get back to my plan tomorrow, but I may have lost my willpower to forgo coffee. Have any of you successfully quit coffee? Was it really hard?  Did you feel better without it?

Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa

Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa

Serves 4


1 cup onion, diced

4 cloves of garlic, minced

2 T. olive oil

2 cups quinoa (rinsed if the package doesn’t say it’s already pre-rinsed)

3 1/2 cups of water

1/2 cup of juice from a jar of roasted red peppers

1 t. salt

1/2 cup roasted red peppers, chopped


With a Rice Maker:

In a skillet, saute onions in the olive oil until soft, add the garlic and saute a few minutes longer. Transfer the onions and garlic and any remaining oil into the rice maker, add the quinoa, water, salt, and red pepper juice and cover and start the rice cooker. When the rice maker goes off, add in the chopped roasted red peppers.

Note: If your rice maker has a tendency to stick, add about a teaspoon of extra oil & stir the ingredients before cooking.

Without a Rice Maker:

In a medium sauce pan, saute onions in the olive oil until soft, add the garlic and saute a few minutes longer. Add the quinoa, water, red pepper juice, & salt to the pot. Cover, bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer and cook until all the liquid is absorbed (about 15-20 minutes). When the rice maker goes off, add in the chopped roasted red pepper

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5 Comments on “Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa”

  1. […] cup grated cheese, depending on preference 1/3 cup cooked quinoa, warmed (click for Rachel’s simple directions) 2 T. black beans, warmed 1/4 c. diced mango, […]

  2. Loretta says:

    How do you rinse quinoa? I always find that it is so tiny that when Itry rinsing it goes right through the strainer.

    • I use a fine mesh strainer and just very gently and quickly rinse it. You might lose a little. But in general, I try to find pre-rinsed quinoa (like the big bag from Costco). It’s just so much easier!

  3. […] cups of cooked quinoa  (Click on link to see Rachel’s easy directions for Red Pepper Quinoa.  If you cook it […]

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