Recipe, Tips & Tricks

Hearty Quinoa: my staple food


I used to not be a huge fan of quinoa. It was boring, only tasted palatable with an unnatural amount of salt, and wasn’t worth the time to cook. This was before I understood the brilliant magic of quinoa and its’ undying versatility. It can transform into the most delicious, healthy, and hearty meal (or side dish) all depending on what you choose to add to it, making this the perfect meal for college students.

That having been said, this recipe is simply an interpretive guide that does not seek to suggest that you have to follow every step and use every ingredient mentioned. Instead, this recipe serves as my personal favorite way of preparing quinoa, which is, of course, open for change depending on individual tastes!

Ingredients (single serving)

1/2 cup Quinoa (can be any type)

1 cup water

1 medium roasted sweet potato (roasted, instructions for roasting after recipe)

1 mango (I used a Champagne mango)

1/4 can black beans

*This recipe makes for great leftovers, so doubling the ingredients is encouraged!


  • Put a medium saucepan over high heat and bring the water and quinoa to a boil. Once boiling, turn the heat down to a simmer and cover the quinoa for a good 10-15 minutes.
  • While the quinoa is cooking, assemble the rest of your chosen fillings. I love sweet potato, black beans, and mango, but I’ve used apples, cranberries, diced red pepper, mushroom, and feta cheese- pretty much anything (within reason) goes!
  • Cube your chosen fillings to bite-sized cubes.
  • Check that the quinoa is fully cooked- the water will be completely absorbed and the quinoa will be light and fluffy like rice.
  • Spoon the quinoa into a bowl and add about a handful of each of your chosen fillings-again, this part is up to you- add as much or as little as you would like!
  • Mix all the ingredients together, salt, pepper, and enjoy!

Sweet Potato Roasting:

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees
  • Peel a sweet potato of your choice size, and cut into bite size cubes.
  • Spread out the potato cubes on a baking sheet, and drizzle about a tablespoon of olive oil over the potatoes, then mix it around so each cube gets evenly coated in olive oil.
  • Roast the potatoes from 15-20 minutes (this will vary depending on how large you cut the cubes, and your oven type). After 15 minutes, check the potatoes every few minutes by poking a fork into a cube to see if it is tender.
  • Right after the potatoes come out of the oven, sprinkle with some sea salt and enjoy!

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