Quinoa and Rice Pilaf

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Prep Time: 30 to 60 minutes, depending on how quickly you can dice veggies.

Cook time: 40 to 60 minutes

Serves: 3 to 6


A filling, hearty side dish which can replace both a starch and a vegetable. The quinoa adds a boost of protein which rice lacks. Don't let the amount of chopping and dicing scare you off, this is a two-pot recipe that's actually very easy once you've made it a couple of times. The prep work for the veggies can even be done a day or two ahead of time and stored in the fridge.



  1. In a medium sauce pan, put 3 cups of water, or chicken or vegetable stock over medium-low heat. We'll call this sauce pan the 'liquid pan.'
  2. In another medium size sauce pan melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. We'll call this sauce pan the 'cooking pan.'
  3. When butter stops foaming, add the diced vegetables (celery, onion, and bell pepper) to the cooking pan.
  4. Stir vegetables occasionally (about once a minute). Vegetables will give off a lot of water and steam.
  5. After about ten (10) to fifteen (15) minutes, the steaming should have ceased and the vegetables should have given up all their water and they should have a glossy sheen on them from the butter. Stir frequently to keep veggies from burning. By this time the water or stock in the 'liquid' sauce pan should be simmering or boiling. Keep the liquid in the 'liquid pan' at a simmer.
  6. When the onions have become translucent and golden, which can take about five (5) to ten (10) minutes, add the uncooked rice to the 'cooking pan,' stirring continuously to keep the rice from burning.
  7. After about three to five minutes (depending on how high a flame you're cooking with - higher heat will brown the rice more quickly, but it becomes easier to accidentally scorch the rice if you don't stir quickly enough), the rice should be a light golden brown color. When the rice is light golden brown, add the quinoa and the 3 cups of simmering liquid from the 'liquid pan' to the 'cooking pan.'
  8. The liquid which has been added to the 'cooking pan' should immediately start to boil. Stir the rice, quinoa, and vegetables to mix, and boil for one minute.
  9. Reduce heat to a low simmer, cover 'cooking pan,' and allow to simmer for twenty (20) minutes.
  10. Remove from heat and let stand for five minutes.
  11. Fluff with fork and serve.