This creamy pilaf incorporates the fluffy, nutty-flavored grain, quinoa, with a decadent and delicious goat cheese gouda. This has an amazing flavor and texture. Try serving with steamed salmon. I think this would work well with pine nuts as well as a variety of other cheeses. Try regular goat, Parmesan, blue, etc.

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Ingredients

3
Original recipe yields 3 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Bring a pot of lightly salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the quinoa, and cook until the quinoa is tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain in a mesh strainer, and rinse until cold; set aside.

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  • Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat, stir in the sunflower seeds, and cook until lightly toasted, about 2 minutes. Stir in the garlic, and cook until the garlic softens and the aroma mellows, about 2 minutes. Stir in the cooled quinoa and spinach; cook and stir until the quinoa is hot, and the spinach has wilted. Stir in the lemon juice, and all but a pinch of the cheese. Stir until the cheese has melted. Serve sprinkled with the remaining cheese.

Nutrition Facts

233.3 calories; 6.1 g protein; 10.5 g carbohydrates; 13.2 mg cholesterol; 48.7 mg sodium. Full Nutrition

Reviews (145)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
11/20/2009
This was super yummy! I used pine nuts and regular crumbled goat cheese when I made it, and used less olive oil (about 1.5 TBS), and more spinach (about 1 cup). I will however next time making this use less cheese as I thought it was too rich and somewhat over powering the other flavors. Also, to make the prep easier with the quinoa, just add 1/2 cup water to the 1/4 cup quinoa, bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 15mins. This way, the liquid absorbs on its own, and you don't have to drain it if you don't have a fine mesh strainer, much easier and quicker to do. Read More
(140)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
02/20/2009
This was ok. We couldn't taste the garlic spinach or cheese....just the quinoa. I'll try it again but with more garlic and cheese. It has potential. Read More
(6)
206 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 131
  • 4 star values: 53
  • 3 star values: 16
  • 2 star values: 2
  • 1 star values: 4
Rating: 5 stars
11/19/2009
This was super yummy! I used pine nuts and regular crumbled goat cheese when I made it, and used less olive oil (about 1.5 TBS), and more spinach (about 1 cup). I will however next time making this use less cheese as I thought it was too rich and somewhat over powering the other flavors. Also, to make the prep easier with the quinoa, just add 1/2 cup water to the 1/4 cup quinoa, bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 15mins. This way, the liquid absorbs on its own, and you don't have to drain it if you don't have a fine mesh strainer, much easier and quicker to do. Read More
(140)
Rating: 5 stars
04/15/2009
Oh my gosh! If I could give this recipe 10 stars, I would! This is my new favorite quinoa recipe. Just a note, this recipe is for ONE serving. I QUADRUPLED it to make about 4 – 5 servings. I use pre-rinsed quinoa, so I followed the cooking directions on the box for 1 cup (dry) of quinoa. I used pine nuts (which I’m crazy about) and parmesan cheese. Next time I will add the nuts with the garlic and cook for only 2 minutes because I was afraid of the nuts getting too brown. I did not quadruple the olive oil and lemon juice, though. I still used only 3 Tbsp. olive oil and about 1 Tbsp. lemon juice. And I used 2 large garlic cloves. Thank you, thank you for this amazing recipe!! Read More
(102)
Rating: 5 stars
06/27/2011
What a great recipe! So easy to make and very nutritious. I used parmesan cheese and served with grilled halibut and steamed brocoli it was delicious. Read More
(69)
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Rating: 5 stars
05/20/2009
TEN STARS!! This recipe could easily be served in a fine dining restaurant! I doubled the recipe for hubby and I and it's a very generous serving each. Such simple ingredients turn into an amazing dish that I would eat as a main course not just a side dish. I used half the olive oil and half the cheese called for (grated parmesan romano blend) to save quite a few calories and still get the same flavor. Because I cut out half of the salty cheese I ground sea salt and fresh pepper to add just before I mixed in the spinach. Do Not leave out the lemon juice! It really sets of the flavors of this dish. Also I used pine nuts since so many people recommended it and I'm so happy I did. I could eat this once a week for years to come and hubby agrees! Read More
(25)
Rating: 5 stars
02/10/2011
Such a great easy recipe! It definitely has a nice nutty flavor that would go great w/fish. My husband thought it was perfect just by itself. I tripled the serving b/c I have a big family & it worked well for us no leftovers. I only doubled the olive oil & cheese though. Im excited to make this again! Read More
(23)
Rating: 5 stars
08/02/2008
Amazing recipe I already plan to make it again soon! How could you go wrong with quinoa spinach and cheese? I used pine nuts instead of sunflower seeds. To be honest I don't know if I would have liked it that much if i had used seeds. Then again I'm nuts on pine nuts! Read More
(16)
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Rating: 5 stars
10/01/2008
Very easy and healthy! I used frozen spinach and red pre-washed quinoa. I steamed the quinoa, so I didn't have to rinse and drain it after. I also added some sesame seeds, walnuts, and black pepper. Read More
(13)
Rating: 5 stars
10/21/2008
Great recipe, I've been looking for a good quinoa recipe for a while and I made this after yoga class tonight and it was quick, easy and just what I needed. I used a mix of sunflower, pumpkin and sesame seeds which added some extra crunch and used parmesan instead of the gouda and it worked out great. I also used pak choi (Chinese spinach) as the store was out of normal spinach and I think next time I might add a few baby or sundried tomatoes. Thanks for the great recipe! Read More
(10)
Rating: 5 stars
08/25/2010
I made this tonight for dinner and we loved it!! It was fast and also nice and easy. I used shredded Parmesan and that worked fine but I'd be curious to try it with the gouda. The toasted sunflower seeds was a scrumptious and unexpected touch that added a delicious crunch. The cheese made things nice and creamy. I highly recommend at least doubling the recipe to get enough. I will definitely be making this again! Thank you for sharing!! Read More
(9)
Rating: 3 stars
02/20/2009
This was ok. We couldn't taste the garlic spinach or cheese....just the quinoa. I'll try it again but with more garlic and cheese. It has potential. Read More
(6)