Cheesy Quinoa Pilaf with Spinach Recipe -
Cheesy Quinoa Pilaf with Spinach Recipe
  • READY IN 40 mins

Cheesy Quinoa Pilaf with Spinach

Recipe by  

"This creamy pilaf incorporates the fluffy, nutty-flavored grain, quinoa, with a decadent and delicious goat cheese gouda. This has an amazing flavor and texture. Try serving with steamed salmon. I think this would work well with pine nuts as well as a variety of other cheeses. Try regular goat, Parmesan, blue, etc."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 1 1/2 cups Change Servings
  • PREP

    10 mins
  • COOK

    30 mins

    40 mins


  1. Bring a pot of lightly salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the quinoa, and cook until the quinoa is tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain in a mesh strainer, and rinse until cold; set aside.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat, stir in the sunflower seeds, and cook until lightly toasted, about 2 minutes. Stir in the garlic, and cook until the garlic softens and the aroma mellows, about 2 minutes. Stir in the cooled quinoa and spinach; cook and stir until the quinoa is hot, and the spinach has wilted. Stir in the lemon juice, and all but a pinch of the cheese. Stir until the cheese has melted. Serve sprinkled with the remaining cheese.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Nov 19, 2009

This was super yummy! I used pine nuts and regular crumbled goat cheese when I made it, and used less olive oil (about 1.5 TBS), and more spinach (about 1 cup). I will however next time making this use less cheese as I thought it was too rich and somewhat over powering the other flavors. Also, to make the prep easier with the quinoa, just add 1/2 cup water to the 1/4 cup quinoa, bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 15mins. This way, the liquid absorbs on its own, and you don't have to drain it if you don't have a fine mesh strainer, much easier and quicker to do.

Most Helpful Critical Review
Feb 20, 2009

This was ok. We couldn't taste the garlic, spinach, or cheese....just the quinoa. I'll try it again but with more garlic and cheese. It has potential.

Apr 15, 2009

Oh my gosh! If I could give this recipe 10 stars, I would! This is my new favorite quinoa recipe. Just a note, this recipe is for ONE serving. I QUADRUPLED it to make about 4 – 5 servings. I use pre-rinsed quinoa, so I followed the cooking directions on the box for 1 cup (dry) of quinoa. I used pine nuts (which I’m crazy about) and parmesan cheese. Next time I will add the nuts with the garlic and cook for only 2 minutes because I was afraid of the nuts getting too brown. I did not quadruple the olive oil and lemon juice, though. I still used only 3 Tbsp. olive oil and about 1 Tbsp. lemon juice. And I used 2 large garlic cloves. Thank you, thank you for this amazing recipe!!

Jun 27, 2011

What a great recipe! So easy to make and very nutritious. I used parmesan cheese and served with grilled halibut and steamed brocoli, it was delicious.

Feb 10, 2011

Such a great, easy recipe! It definitely has a nice nutty flavor that would go great w/fish. My husband thought it was perfect just by itself. I tripled the serving b/c I have a big family & it worked well for us, no leftovers. I only doubled the olive oil & cheese though. Im excited to make this again!

May 20, 2009

TEN STARS!! This recipe could easily be served in a fine dining restaurant! I doubled the recipe for hubby and I and it's a very generous serving each. Such simple ingredients turn into an amazing dish that I would eat as a main course not just a side dish. I used half the olive oil and half the cheese called for (grated parmesan romano blend) to save quite a few calories and still get the same flavor. Because I cut out half of the salty cheese, I ground sea salt and fresh pepper to add just before I mixed in the spinach. Do Not leave out the lemon juice! It really sets of the flavors of this dish. Also, I used pine nuts since so many people recommended it and I'm so happy I did. I could eat this once a week for years to come and hubby agrees!

Aug 02, 2008

Amazing recipe, I already plan to make it again soon! How could you go wrong with quinoa, spinach and cheese? I used pine nuts instead of sunflower seeds. To be honest, I don't know if I would have liked it that much if i had used seeds. Then again, I'm nuts on pine nuts!

Oct 01, 2008

Very easy and healthy! I used frozen spinach and red pre-washed quinoa. I steamed the quinoa, so I didn't have to rinse and drain it after. I also added some sesame seeds, walnuts, and black pepper.


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  • Calories
  • 233 kcal
  • 12%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 10.5 g
  • 3%
  • Cholesterol
  • 13 mg
  • 4%
  • Fat
  • 18.9 g
  • 29%
  • Fiber
  • 1.2 g
  • 5%
  • Protein
  • 6.1 g
  • 12%
  • Sodium
  • 49 mg
  • 2%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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