Cheesy Broccoli Quinoa Recipe

by katerina on January 31, 2013

I have been craving the oddest things lately, mostly foods from childhood, specifically processed things like chocolate cake and hamburger helper. Now, of course I want the grown-up, real-food version. So my lastest craving, for broccoli and cheese rice, morphed into a healthier quinoa recipe.

Cheesy Broccoli Quinoa-7

Cheesey and satisfying like the original, but made with real ingredients and no package necessary. Though if you want that signature orange colour then don’t use a white cheddar as I did. Oh, and yes, it certainly did fulfill my craving.

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Cheesy Broccoli Quinoa Recipe

(serves 4)

2 cups chopped broccoli
1 cup quinoa
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon flour
1 cup milk
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup grated cheddar

Put a pot full of water on to boil. Remove any part of the broccoli stem that is woody and roughly chop the broccoli stalk into approximately 1/2" pieces. Do the same with the florets but keep separate.

Once the water is boiling add a heaping tablespoon of salt and add the broccoli stalks. Cook for 2 minutes. Then add the quinoa and the remaining brocoli and cook until the quinoa just starts to get soft and you see the little tails emerge, about 5-6 minutes. Drain and run the broccoli and quinoa under cold water to stop the cooking. Set aside.

In the meantime, start the cheese sauce. In a medium saucepan melt the butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour, and whisk for 2 minutes. Slowly whisk in the milk 1/4 cup at a time, and don't add more until the mixture is simmering again. Once all the milk is combined, bring to a gentle simmer, stirring regularly. Add a pinch of salt and some freshly ground pepper. Allow the mixture to simmer for 5 minutes to thicken and allow the floury taste to cook out.

Slowly start stirring in the grated cheddar a handful at a time. Allow the cheddar to combine before you continue to the rest. Stir in the quinoa and broccoli mixture. Season to taste and serve.

(If you have leftovers, this reheats pretty well as a casserole. Add a few extra tablespoons of milk, place in a buttered casserole dish and top with extra grated cheddar. Bake for 20 minutes)

Prep Time: 5 minutes | Cooking Time: 15 minutes | Total Time:20 minutes
Calories(approximate per serving): 300

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

n2grafx February 1, 2013 at 1:17 am

Thank you, this is just the recipe I wanted!


katerina February 1, 2013 at 2:36 am

excellent! Let me know if you enjoy it.


Melissa February 2, 2013 at 2:59 am

This was excellent! I cooked up some cubed chicken and tossed it in too. Definitely keeping this one, I’m always looking for great quinoa recipes.


katerina February 2, 2013 at 6:18 pm

Awesome! Now it’s a full meal.


eileen February 5, 2013 at 3:15 am

Made this tonight and it was quite good; didn’t have cheddar so used monterey jack and Jarlesburg. And it seems to be a great “base” for adding other veggies, or as my husband suggested, bacon. Looking forward to making it again. thanks for the idea!


katerina February 5, 2013 at 3:56 am

bacon? love it. I also love your husbands enthusiasm to take the healthiness out of it ;)


katie February 5, 2013 at 7:29 pm

I just did a cauliflower quinoa… Love this! Hamburger Helper?!?!? I remember that!


Melissa@EyesBigger February 7, 2013 at 3:25 am

Not a quinoa fan but had half a bag that needed to be used up so I made this tonight – added a some farmer’s sausage and a little dry mustard and Worcestershire Sauce to the cheese sauce and it was super tasty! I might even buy another bag! :)


katerina February 8, 2013 at 4:11 pm

dried mustard would be a great addition!


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