1-Minute Instant Pot Quinoa (with Optional Veggies!)

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Nutritious, protein-rich quinoa cooks up fluffy and flavorful in only one minute under pressure! Learn the simple steps to making consistently-good Instant Pot Quinoa, with optional veggies cooked right in.

one minute instant pot quinoa

Do your kids eat quinoa? Its a funny little grain. Chewy and crunchy all at once. Mild and earthy in flavor. We love to rotate this high-protein grain into the menu when it feels like we’ve been serving dinner rolls and rice on repeat. And the Instant Pot makes that easy and straightforward to do!

Here’s why we like cooking quinoa in the Instant Pot. First, it turns out fluffy, tender, and tasty. Second, it’s pretty quick to make. Third, you can customize the flavors with herbs, broth, or veggies (more on that later.) And last, you don’t have to pay much attention to it while it’s cooking.

This post teaches you how to get great quinoa out of your Instant Pot every time. Let’s go!

freshly cooked quinoa in a bowl

Tips for Making Perfect Instant Pot Quinoa

  • Rinse your quinoa before cooking. We know, you’ve heard this before. Just don’t skip this step. Rinsing before you cook helps get rid of the natural chemical compounds called saponins than can make quinoa taste bitter.
  • Use a little less liquid than you’re used to using on the stove. All the moisture stays locked inside the IP during cooking, so you’ll need only 1.5 cups of liquid per cup of raw quinoa.
  • Consider using broth instead of water for an instant flavor boost. Because why not?
  • Add a tablespoon of olive oil to the pot. This cuts down on foamy bubbles and prevents sticking.
  • Cook on high pressure for one minute, then let the pressure come down naturally for 10 minutes before you flip the valve. The grains will continue to cook during the natural release time.
  • Batch cook it to have healthy whole grains on hand all week. Store cooked and cooled quinoa in a big bowl in the stove to eat hot or cold. Or freeze single-serve portions in zip-top bags to use later.

How Long Does it Take to Cook Instant Pot Quinoa?

We call this “one minute” quinoa because that’s how long you set your Instant Pot to cook under high pressure. But keep in mind that it takes time for the Instant Pot to reach high pressure, and it also takes ten minutes of natural-release time afterwards.

What this means is that the total cook time is closer to 20 minutes, which is roughly the same length of time it takes to cook quinoa on the stove.

So why make Instant Pot Quinoa? We still love cooking this grain in the Instant Pot because you can set it and forget it, and get perfectly fluffy quinoa every time.

quinoa with veggies and almonds cooked right in

What Can You add to Instant Pot Quinoa?

Small-diced veggies can cook right in the Instant Pot along with your quinoa. Try these:

  • Celery
  • bell peppers
  • fresh spinach
  • carrots
  • onions
  • cauliflower

One-Minute Instant Pot Quinoa and Veggies | Super Healthy Kids | Food and Drink

You can also stir some tender veggies, fresh herbs, nuts, and other goodies right into the quinoa right when you lift the lid. We like:

  • diced tomatoes
  • feta cheese
  • slivered almonds
  • kalamata or black olives
  • parsley or cilantro
  • diced ham
  • frozen peas or corn
freshly made quinoa with mixed vegetables

More Kid-Friendly Quinoa Recipes

Instant Pot One-Minute Quinoa (With Optional Veggies!)

Nutritious, protein-rich quinoa cooks up fluffy and flavorful in only one minute under pressure! Learn the simple steps to making consistently-good Instant Pot Quinoa, with optional veggies cooked right in.
4.5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Instant Pot One-Minute Quinoa (With Optional Veggies!)
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 309kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa, uncooked
  • 1 1/2 cup chicken broth or water

Optional Add-Ins (before cooking)

  • 2 stalk celery
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 medium bell pepper, red
  • 4 cup spinach

Optional Add-Ins (After Cooking)

  • 1/2 cup, crumbled feta cheese crumbles
  • 1/4 cup almonds, sliced
  • 1/3 cup pesto
  • 1/2 cup black olives, canned
  • 2 medium tomato, red
  • 1/4 cup parsley

Instructions

  • Rinse and drain quinoa.
  • Dump quinoa into Instant Pot, then add any diced veggies from the add-ins listed above. Pour broth or water into pot.
  • 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.
  • While the pot comes to pressure and cooks, prepare any other optional add-ins.
  • When the pot beeps several times it has finished cooking. Let the pressure come down naturally for then minutes, then you may flip the valve to release the rest of the pressure manually.
  • Add any extra add-ins you have saved for the end of cooking, and mix well.
  • Serve warm or cool.
Tried this recipe?Mention @SuperHealthyKids or tag #SuperHealthyKids!

Nutrition

Calories: 309kcal | Carbohydrates: 36g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 11mg | Sodium: 547mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 3g

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27 Comments

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!

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!

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!

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

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.

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.

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!

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.

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.

Made this dish today. It was delicious! Very quick and easy! And the citrus dressing was the perfect compliment. Thank you????

Wow! I hardly ever cook quinoa because it takes so long, and I’m usually racing to get dinner on the table for my family. There are so many people raving about various quinoa recipes in the Instant Pot, so I took a chance on this one. Everyone loved it! And I love it because I can get everything chopped, cooked, and on the table in about 30 minutes. I left out the olives because of my picky hubby, and subbed Swiss chard for spinach. So good! Thank you thank you for making me a new member of the quinoa fan club.

This looks like a great dish, but I don’t have an instant pot. Can this be made in a Crock-Pot? If so how would the timing be changed?

ALthough I haven’t tried myself, from what I found online you can cook quinoa in a slow cooker for 4-6 hours on low. Good luck and enjoy!

Thank you for this! I can barely cook an egg but I gave this a go in my new Instant Pot and the whole family (who are great cooks) sang my praises. I didn’t have the olives or almonds but it was great!

4 stars
I made this following instructions, quinoa was not cooked. put it back in for one minute and left to natural release. quinoa was mushy. but this is so Delicious!! We will be definitely trying this again and again.

5 stars
i made this today..used chicken broth, broccoli, carrots, zucchini, summer squash, green pepper, red onion, tomatoes, kalamata olives, fat free feta, yellow wax beans,….added the olives,tomatoes,and feta after the cooking time…it was delicious without any addition of herbs, salt, or flavorings! and i can play with whatever i have! i even avoided the olive oil and sprayed the IP container with oil spray!
but please, do you have some approximate nutritional information?
i think i guesstimated too high in carbs and fat and not enough in protein…
thank you so much for this great,quick, tasty and healthful recipe!!!

Hi Risha! I’m glad it turned out so well for you. We are working on getting nutrition info on all the recipes on the site. In the meantime, they are all calculated in the connected cooking app, Prepear. You can get it and see all the recipes + nutrition data for free, here: https://www.prepear.com/