How to Make Puffed Quinoa at Home

May 10, 2018 0 Comments

homemade puffed quinoa

Quinoa has become so popular recently, finding it in stores near you is not a problem at all!

These nutritious, versatile pseudo-grain are definitely a fun, healthy snack that you’ve got to try! 

Quinoa puffs add a little pop to your plate with the crunchy texture and nutty, earthy flavor!

Try this super healthy quinoa recipe at home and see what we’re talking about! It’s so quick and easy--you will love it! 

puffed quinoa in glass bowl

What you’ll need:

  • 1/2 cup of Quinoa
  • 1 Tablespoon of Coconut Oil

Check out the step-by-step instructions below on how to make puffed quinoa at home.


Part 1: Rinsing the Quinoa

  1. Rinse 1/2 cup of uncooked quinoa thoroughly. Quinoa has a natural pest fighting coating called saponins. These give quinoa a bitter taste and can irritate your stomach--rinsing will remove this.
  2. Strain your rinsed quinoa. Place them on a baking sheet.
  3. Dry your quinoa in the oven. We placed ours in a 200 degree oven to speed up the process. This may take 10-20 minutes until moisture evaporates from the quinoa.

Part 2: Puffing the Quinoa

  1. Place a tablespoon of coconut oil in a heavy cast iron or le creuset and allow it to melt.
  2. Add your dried and rinsed quinoa to the pan.
  3. Move the pan constantly to allow the quinoa to puff.
  4. Continue to move the pan with the lid on until the popping sounds slow--just like popcorn! This step will take about 10 to 15 minutes. Just make sure it doesn’t burn.
  5. Serve as a snack or toppings to your favorite dessert or breakfast!


Where to get Quinoa

You can now get quinoa in many places; health and organic food stores, supermarkets, and in your local farmer’s markets. 

Before you buy, look for seals or symbols for organic and / or fair trade on the packaging. 

This is the only way the Andean farmers in Peru and Bolivia benefit from their work in growing grain substitutes. 

A good alternative to quinoa is flax seeds.

 raw cooked quinoa in brown red bowl


How to Cook & Prepare Quinoa


Cooking with quinoa is easy. There are three ways to use quinoa for cooking. 

  1. Roasting. You can roast it with a little olive oil in the pan and enjoy the subtle, nutty aroma. 
  1. Boiling. The other way is boiling quinoa in water or broth. For this purpose, pour two parts of liquid and one part of quinoa in a saucepan. Cover it and as soon as the water boils, lower the heat and let it cook for 15 minutes. You add a little salt to taste, just like with rice.

After cooking the quinoa, take the pot off the stove and let the quinoa rest with the lid on the pot for 5 minutes. Then stir well and let it rest for another 5 minutes. Finally, the water is poured off and the quinoa is ready to be eaten.

  1. Baking. Quinoa can only be used as a small component in a dough because it lacks the adhesive protein essential in the baking process. However, not only quinoa flour can be used for baking, but also the whole grain, which is processed into breakfast cereal or puffed rice.


Quinoa seeds can be prepared in a number of ways. 

Soaking. Before cooking, it’s important to wash and let it expand to break down the phytic acid it contains. 

Put the quinoa in a sieve and hold it under running water. Then let it soak in a bowl for at least 10 minutes. Then rinse again in the strainer under tap water.

Sprouting.By allowing the quinoa seeds to germinate first, the phytic acid is broken down even better than when soaked. Of course, a little more planning is required. The seeds naturally take time to germinate.

The quinoa seeds are first left to soak for 2 to 4 hours. Let it germinate for 12 to 48 hours in a special germination bag, in an empty pot or a deep plate.

Rinse the seeds several times in between.


PRO Tip 1: Even when packaged, quinoa still contain traces of saponin, which gives its bitter and soapy taste. 

To avoid this, wash the seeds thoroughly before cooking. Simply put them in a fine-mesh sieve and rinse them well under running water.


rinsing quinoa with water mesh sieve


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More Quinoa Recipes:

Crispy Quinoa Tomato Soup

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Mediterranean Quinoa Bowl with Hummus

Quinoa & Almond Vegan Protein Bars

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Quinoa & Sweet Potato Salad with Vinaigrette Dressing

Quinoa Breakfast Bowl

Quinoa Fruit Salad

Quinoa Porridge with Bananas & Grapes

Vegan Quinoa Balls with Mango Chili Chutney

Vegetable Quinoa