Instant Pot One-Minute Quinoa and Veggies

You knew you could make 1-minute quinoa in your Instant Pot, but did you know you could add veggies? One-minute quinoa and veggies is a complete meal with just one minute in the pressure cooker!One-Minute Instant Pot Quinoa and Veggies | Super Healthy Kids | Food and DrinkEvery day I fall more and more in love with my Instant Pot. I love how quickly it cooks so many things, and how care-free it is. No stirring, no checking. And if it finishes early it just automatically keeps things perfectly warm. We’re living in the future, people!

One of my favorite things about the Instant Pot is cooking grains like brown rice and quinoa. One minute quinoa always turns out perfectly for me — so I wondered if I could add veggies. Wouldn’t it be a dream to cook everything at once?

One-Minute Instant Pot Quinoa and Veggies | Super Healthy Kids | Food and DrinkWhy we love quinoa and veggies

I’m here to tell you dreams come true. This meal is going to be a new go-to for my family for meatless Mondays or any other day we don’t feel the need for meat. After all, quinoa is a complete protein all on its own!One-Minute Instant Pot Quinoa and Veggies | Super Healthy Kids | Food and Drink

Along with being a complete protein, quinoa contains heart-healthy fats, a good amount of fiber, and folic acid. Quinoa is also a great source of several minerals, including manganese, copper, and phosphorus. What does this mean for us? Healthier bones, skin, and more even levels of energy, just to name a few benefits.One-Minute Instant Pot Quinoa and Veggies | Super Healthy Kids | Food and Drink


The veggies we used are also great sources of fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Bell peppers and tomatoes are great sources of vitamin C, and tomatoes are also one of the best sources of biotin, which helps with blood sugar regulation. Celery is high in vitamin K, spinach is a wonderful source of folate, and olives contain vitamin E.

One minute quinoa and veggies in the Instant Pot

First, let’s get prep work out of the way. Dice your bell pepper into small pieces. I used an orange pepper, but you can use any color you like. Slice three celery ribs into fairly thin pieces. Chop two tomatoes and slice olives (this can also be done later if you’re in a rush because they don’t have to go in the pot to cook).One-Minute Instant Pot Quinoa and Veggies | Super Healthy Kids | Food and Drink

Next, rinse and drain the quinoa – this helps the quinoa taste better. Once drained, dump the quinoa into the Instant Pot. Next, add diced bell pepper and sliced celery. Finally, pile on four really packed cups of spinach – about half a bag of baby spinach.

Fasten the Instant Pot lid and make sure the vent is closed. I’ve forgotten to do this before and it’s always a bummer! Push the “Manual” button and then make sure pressure is set to HIGH. Next, decrease the time to 1 minute.

The pot should take about 10 minutes or so to reach pressure and then only one minute to cook from there. Once it finishes it will beep loudly. From here, you can either let the pot be for about 15 minutes while pressure releases naturally, or you can manually release. I prefer manual release because it’s quicker! To do this, carefully switch the vent to open, being careful to keep hands away from the steam.One-Minute Instant Pot Quinoa and Veggies | Super Healthy Kids | Food and DrinkOnce pressure has released, the pin next to the vent will drop down and you know it’s safe to open. Stir up the cooked quinoa and veggies, then stir in chopped tomatoes, sliced olives, and pesto. Stir again.

Serve topped with slivered almonds for crunch and feta cheese for zesty flavor. You can also try other nuts or different cheeses. I love goat cheese, but whatever your family loves will do the trick.One-Minute Instant Pot Quinoa and Veggies | Super Healthy Kids | Food and DrinkFun variations for this dish include adding cooked chicken at the end or switching out the veggies. Just make sure to use veggies that cook quickly so that they finish in the same amount of time as quinoa. Mushrooms or zucchini shreds would work nicely!

Flavoring can be switched up as well. Pesto is delicious, but you can also use other dressings or seasonings of your choice if you want to try something different. I love using this citrus dressing on quinoa, personally.One-Minute Instant Pot Quinoa and Veggies | Super Healthy Kids | Food and DrinkEnjoy using your Instant Pot for a virtually instant meal with this recipe!FOOD - Instant Pot One-Minute Quinoa and Veggies. Add veggies to one-minute quinoa! One-minute quinoa and veggies is a complete (and virtually instant) meal with just one minute in the pressure cooker.

Instant Pot One-Minute Quinoa and Veggies

Instant Pot One-Minute Quinoa and Veggies
Serves: 6
Prep Time: 20 m
Cook Time: 15 m


  • 3 stalk – celery
  • 1 medium – bell pepper, red
  • 1 1/2 cup – quinoa, uncooked
  • 1/4 teaspoon – salt
  • 4 cup – spinach
  • 1 1/2 cup – chicken broth, low-sodium
  • 2 medium – tomato, red
  • 1/2 cup – black olives, canned
  • 1/3 cup – pesto
  • 1/2 cup, crumbled – feta cheese crumbles
  • 1/4 cup – almonds, sliced


  1. Chop celery and bell pepper into small pieces. Rinse and drain quinoa.
  2. Dump quinoa into Instant Pot, then bell pepper and celery. Add 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Measure 4 well-packed cups of spinach (about half a bag) and dump into Instant Pot. Pour chicken (or any other) broth into pot.
  3. Close the lid and make sure the vent is set to closed. Push the manual button, make sure pressure is on HIGH and reduce time to 1 minute.
  4. While the pot comes to pressure and cooks, chop tomatoes and olives.
  5. When the pot beeps several times it has finished cooking. Release pressure in one of two ways: 1) manually release pressure by carefully opening steam valve. Make sure to keep hands clear of steam as it will be hot. This takes a couple of minutes. Or 2) do nothing and allow the pressure to release naturally over about 15 minutes. You will know you can open the pot when the pin to the side of the pressure valve drops.
  6. Add tomatoes, olives, and pesto to the pot. Mix well.
  7. Serve warm or cold topped with feta cheese and almond slices.

Nutrition Facts

  • Nutrition per serving % daily value
  • Calories: 307 15%
  • Fat: 14 g 22%
  • Carb: 34 g 11%
  • Fiber: 5 g 20%
  • Protein: 11 g 22%
  • Sugar: 3 g
written by
Katrina Nelson

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mk says:

I made this tonight with homemade chicken broth. At first I was skeptical because the veggies were a bit mushy, but wow! how lovely! This was quick, tasty, and a perfect dish for anyone!

Yay! Nothing better than something quick and nutritious that goes off well!

Bien says:

How to make this in a regular stove and pot?

Hi Bien! I haven’t made this on the stove, but I think it should work. You’ll just cook quinoa according to package directions (using the amount of liquid and time it calls for) but add in the veggies (bell pepper, celery, spinach) as well. Then let it sit for five minutes before adding in tomatoes, olives, and pesto. Let us know if you try this and how it goes!

Diana Estores says:

Would it be possible to use frozen spinach ?

Hi Diana! I haven’t tried it, but my guess is that it will work. My only concern would be that it might be a little more wet or mushy – so maybe add just a teeny bit less liquid than the recipe calls for. Let us know if you try it and how it works for you!

Jonathan Wolff says:

Seems like a big difference with quick release vs natural. Can quinoa get over cooked?

Good question – I’ve never had it overcooked, but I do know some people like it a little al dente and this version is definitely fully cooked with either release.

Marlene says:

Wonderful recipe. Added additional veggies that were in refrigerator. Served it with beef & broccoli made in the instant pot. Delicious & so easy. ?

Naomi says:

This is one of my new favorite recipes! My fiance and I both decided to go vegan in July but have since decided to be mostly vegan but eat dairy occasionally. I can’t give up feta cheese! I got my Instant pot at the beginning of the summer and this was one of the first recipes I tried. Tonight I’m adding carrots, green pepper, a dash of Northern Italian dressing and white beans (at the end) to the recipe. I’ll let you know how it turns out.

Jill says:

Do you know if this recipe would work in the 3qt with the amount of ingredients you have listed? Or would I need to adjust the cooking time? Thanks.

harlan wheeler says:

Thanks! This was great

Ashley says:

I just made this following your instructions exactly, and while the flavors were amazing, the whole thing was very soggy and wet – more like stew/porridge than a quinoa salad like the pictures show and I expected. Any suggestions on what I can do next time to get the right result? Thanks!

Terri says:

Used baby arugala instead of spinach because that’s all I had. Cooked two mins and used manual release. Quinoa and veggies cooked perfect. No need for pesto…plenty of flavor without! I think manual release is key to keep from overlooking quinoa.

Teresa D says:

This recipe is amazing. I used tri coloured quinoa and kale instead of spinach. Didn’t need the feta or the pesto.

This one is definitely a keeper.

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