Here’s a simple, flexible recipe for autumn-themed quinoa. I was out of breakfast ideas and saw pumpkin quinoa on Pinterest, and that was enough to set me experimenting on my own.

I’ve had horrible experiences with overcooked quinoa, so this was carefully watched.

Bring a pot

~4 cups water

to the boil over high heat.

When boiling, add

1 cup quinoa

and lower heat to medium. Let cook ~10 minutes or just until done.

While quinoa is cooking, preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

When done, drain well (a large sieve works well for me). Transfer to a large bowl and toss with

3 tablespoons pureed pumpkin
1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon powdered ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg (optional)

Spread evenly on a parchment-lined baking sheet.

Bake 30 minutes, giving it a good stir every 10 minutes or so. Don’t press too much on the grains, you don’t want them all smooshed together as to become pasty. After the first 10 minutes, keep stirring/tossing, but leave them in small flattish clumps, with spaces in between, so that some edges get exposed to air and get nice and toasty. You’re shooting for a nice combo of soft and grainy but with a teeny bit of crunch. What you’re really doing is drying it, kinda like how you would make granola. (If you have more time, you can extend the baking time so the quinoa does get crunchier and drier.)

Remove from oven and serve hot. I topped mine with a sprinkling of brown sugar, chopped pecans (which would be really yummy made into a praline first, but who’s got time for that, right?), and raspberries, after which I drizzled a bit of almond milk all throughout.

Walnuts would work too, roasted 5-7 minutes first in a 350 degree F oven
Fresh chopped apples, or apples cooked in a bit of butter or Earth Balance, lemon juice and cinnamon
Hemp seeds, YUM!!
Butter! (if you’re not avoiding dairy), or maybe a little cream
Any other autumny fruit or nut topping you like
Maple syrup would be sensational

Happy Fall!!!


Quinoa is grown in the Andean region, so this dish would be suitable for celebrating the feast days of any of the following saints. A simple variation of toppings — for instance, strawberries for the spring or summer saints, or an Andean-grown fruit, like dried papaya — will work here.

St. Narcisa de Jesus Martillo Moran, August 30
St. Teresa of the Andes, July 13
St. Francis Solano, July 14
St. Laura Montoya, May 13
St. Martin de Porres, November 3
St. Rose of Lima, August 23