Perfectly cooked Quinoa in Pressure Cooker or Instant Pot. Two ways – In the main pot and pot-in-pot. Just add quinoa and water, set the timer and come back to perfectly cooked quinoa. This quinoa Instant Pot recipe is now our go to method for cooking quinoa.
What is better than quick and hands off food? Nothing! Especially if you are a mom, juggling many many things. If you agree, this Instant Pot Quinoa is exactly what you have been looking for 🙂
No need to wait for water to come to boil over a stove top, or watching the quinoa, turning off the stove, or even burning the quinoa at the bottom of the pan. Just add the quinoa and water and push a button, walk away and come back to perfectly cooked quinoa. Use this quinoa for salads, as a side with a curry or add it to a soup. It is perfect to meal prep too.
Why quinoa over rice?
Here are some reasons to choose quinoa over rice:
- Quinoa has fewer calories and carbs
- Quinoa has more protein than all other rices
- Quinoa keeps you full for longer
- Quinoa can help with weight loss and improve lipid profile
My preferred brand of Quinoa is this one shown in the picture that I get from Costco. It is also available on Amazon. I like to alternate between different types of sides, such as quinoa, brown rice, white rice or some type of bread.
Another favorite gluten-free alternative is buckwheat. Check out how to cook buckwheat in the instant pot.
How to Make Perfectly Cooked Quinoa in the Pressure Cooker?
Here I am sharing two ways to cook Quinoa. Sometimes when cooking only quinoa or when cooking quinoa in larger quantities, you want to make it in the main pot. However at other times, you just want a cup of quinoa and don't really want to deal with cleaning the whole large steel pot. At such times, pot-in-pot quinoa comes handy.
Quinoa Instant Pot Recipe in the Main Pot
It can't get any easier, just add quinoa and water to the pot. If you like, this is the time to add salt or or butter or oil as well. You can also use broth in place of water to make quinoa.
I set it for 1 minute at high pressure and let the pressure release naturally. Fluff with a fork and enjoy the perfectly cooked and separate grains of quinoa.
Quinoa Instant Pot Recipe with Pot-in-Pot Method
To cook pot-in-pot quinoa, you need a trivet and a pot you can place on the trivet. If I am preparing only quinoa, then I use the trivet that came with the instant pot. If you are cooking the main dish along with the quinoa, you would need a long legged trivet.
You will also need a pot that can be placed in the pressure cooker. Here is one on Amazon – Ekonova Stackable Stainless Steel Insert Pans. You can also do PIP for quinoa in a Pyrex glass bowl, but these need a couple extra minutes to cook the quinoa.
Learn more about the instant pot pot-in-pot method with this comprehensive guide!
Add about a cup of water in the main steel pot, place the trivet and then the bowl of quinoa and water.
Just 4 minutes at high pressure, and a natural pressure release. Perfect quinoa is ready. Fluff it with a fork and enjoy!
Advantages of pot-in-pot method to cook quinoa
- You can cook less quantity at a time.
- You don’t need to wash the large instant pot insert if just cooking quinoa.
- You can cook in the serving bowl itself.
- You can cook a complete meal at once and save precious time. With entree in the main insert and quinoa in a bowl on a trivet. This could work with any main dish that takes about 3-6 mixtures to cook in the main steel insert. Some examples are - Mom's Chicken Curry, Saag Paneer, Dal Fry or Panang Curry with Chicken.
Try cooking Quinoa in the Instant Pot and let me know how you like it.
Perfect 1-minute Quinoa in Instant Pot (with Pot-in-Pot option)
- 1 cup Quinoa
- 1.25 cup Water
- Wash quinoa in a mesh liner until the water runs clear.
Cooking in the pot
- Add water and quinoa to the pressure cooker. Close lid with vent in sealing position. Start the pressure cooker in MANUAL or pressure cook mode at high pressure for 1 mins.
- When the pressure cooker beeps, do natural pressure release. Fluff with a fork. Quinoa is ready.
Cooking with pot-in-pot (PIP) method
- Add 1 cup water to the main insert of the pressure cooker. Place trivet in the main insert.
- Add water and quinoa to a steel or oven-safe bowl. Place the bowl on the trivet.
- Close the lid of the pressure cooker with vent in sealing position. Set in pressure cook or manual mode for 4 minutes at high pressure.
- When the pressure cooker beeps, do a natural pressure release. Fluff with a fork. Quinoa is ready to be served.
- If you like, you can add salt or or butter/oil before pressure cooking quinoa.
- You can also use broth in place of water to make quinoa.
Note: Nutrition values are my best estimates. If you rely on them for your diet, use your preferred nutrition calculator.