If you have recently discovered quinoa, you may be trying to master cooking it in various ways. This vegetable seed is affordable and packed with fiber, protein and healthy amino acids. Its versatility makes it easy to add to your meals, and it can be served hot or cold. Cooking quinoa in rice cooker is one of the most convenient methods, and it also is the easiest way to ensure that it is cooked perfectly every time. As is the case with anything you cook, there are some things that you should know before you load up your rice cooker with quinoa and water.
Rinse the Quinoa Thoroughly
One of the most common mistakes people make when cooking quinoa in a rice cooker or even in a saucepan on the stove is not rinsing it. Quinoa’s covering is bitter, so your entire dish can be ruined if you overlook this important step. The easiest way to wash quinoa is to place it in a fine strainer or a mesh sieve and to run it under cold water.
Choose Between Water and Broth
Quinoa is commonly cooked on the stove or in a rice cooker using plain water, but this is not the only option. Using chicken or beef broth is a great way to add flavor to a dish that can taste bland to some people. When deciding between broth or water, consider how you will pair the quinoa in your meal plan. A direct substitution of broth for water can be made.
Add Spices and Herbs
Broth is not the only way to flavor your quinoa. Regardless of whether you use broth or water when cooking quinoa in rice cooker, you can also add a touch of lemon juice or even fajita seasoning, curry powder, Cajun seasoning or other flavors. Other ideas include chopped rosemary, cilantro, walnuts, crushed garlic, sesame seeds and more. Keep in mind that the seasoning powders can be added before or after cooking the quinoa. Other items should be added after the quinoa is cooked.
Select the Right Setting
Many rice cookers have unique settings for white and brown rice. A common mistake is selecting the brown rice setting. To ensure that quinoa is cooked property, it should be cooked using the white rice setting because of its unique physical properties.
Fluff Before Serving
Allow the rice cooker to do its job without interruption. Lifting the lid can interfere with the steaming process. Once the cooker has shut off, allow the quinoa to sit for approximately three to five minutes. You can then fluff the quinoa before serving it. Cooked quinoa can also be chilled and added to salads, a plate of steamed veggies and other dishes. Quinoa can be stored in the fridge for approximately five days, and it can be frozen for up to two months.
Now that you know how to cook quinoa perfectly with your rice cooker, experiment with different flavorings and recipes. Quinoa is so healthy and versatile that it may become a staple in your diet.