10 Healthy Recipes Using Leftover Quinoa

Updated: Jan 14

Love quinoa as much as we do? We've brought together 10 delicious quinoa recipes to use up your leftovers.

Quinoa is a staple around my home. As a whole grain, quinoa is an excellent source of complex carbohydrates, and also contains fibre and protein which slows digestion to keep you full longer. From a practical perspective, I love quinoa because it’s relatively quick cooking, it can be used in a variety of different dishes and works well with a variety of flavour combinations.

Quinoa can also be used as a meal prep tool to speed up your weeknight cooking. By making a large batch of quinoa on the weekend, you can have a variety of different meals all week. Want a fresh new meal in under 30 minutes? Try our One-Pan Chicken and Spinach Quinoa with Dill and Feta. If you also have some leftover chicken in the fridge, make the Chicken Quinoa Fried Rice recipe below in only 35 minutes. If you want a low maintenance vegetarian meal that the family is sure to love – try the Vegetarian Quinoa Chili. Or if you’re in need of a quick and simple meal, try the Greek Quinoa Salad paired with grilled chicken.

The nature of cooking any grain is that sometimes (or if you’re like me, all the time) you overestimate what you need. This small amount of quinoa can often go to waste if it’s not substantial enough to use for another meal. For this reason, we’ve included recipes using <1 cup of quinoa. Use a small amount of quinoa to make delicious Chocolate Chip Quinoa Cookies or as an alternative to breadcrumbs in Beef and Quinoa Meatballs. No more waste!

Whether you want to use up your leftover quinoa, or prep a large batch on the weekend to reinvent all week, we’ve got everything you need to use quinoa in delicious and time-saving ways. Continue reading for 10 Healthy Recipes Using Leftover Quinoa.

To use 1 cup or less...

1. Chocolate Chip Quinoa Cookies

I think I've found the solution to quinoa waste. This cookie recipe from Dessert For Two is delicious and the perfect way to use up 1/2 cup of leftover quinoa. I'm convinced that once you try these, you'll never waste quinoa again.

2. Beef and Quinoa Meatballs

This meatball recipe from Whole Foods uses quinoa as a substitute for breadcrumbs. Have a picky eater at home? There are some hidden veggies in there too. These meatballs use 3/4 cup of cooked quinoa and are ready in 40 minutes.

3. Vegan Spicy Black Bean Quinoa Burger

These Black Bean Quinoa Burgers from Veganosity are not only delicious but also free of top priority allergens! They stick together really well and have a delicious spicy flavour. Enjoy them as a vegetarian burger patty or as a protein source with a salad. This recipe uses 1 cup of cooked quinoa and takes 50 minutes to cook.

4. Vegetarian Quinoa Chili

This recipe from Chef Savvy is both healthy and hearty. Loaded with different types of beans and spices, it's the perfect dinner for a cold meatless Monday. This recipe uses 1 cup cooked quinoa and is ready in 45 minutes.

To use 1-2 cups...

5. One Pan Chicken and Spinach Quinoa with Dill & Feta

This One-Pan Chicken and Spinach with Dill and Feta is loaded with protein, complex carbohydrates, and veggies. This recipe calls for 1.5 cups of quinoa, uses less than 10 ingredients, and is ready in 30 minutes. What's not to love?

6. Quinoa Crusted Chicken Strips

Who doesn't love chicken strips? These strips from Half Baked Harvest are a crispy and better-for-you alternative to the boxed kind. With only 6 ingredients, including 2 cups of cooked quinoa, these chicken strips are ready in just over an hour.

7. Warm Leftover Quinoa Breakfast Bowls

Quinoa isn't just for dinner. It can be a delicious substitute for oats as the foundation for a delicious breakfast bowl. This recipe from Flor & Vino uses 2 cups of quinoa and is ready in 15 minutes.

8. Chicken Quinoa Fried Rice

This recipe from Eating Well is a great way to use both leftover quinoa and chicken. Use up any leftover veggies you have at the end of the week, or toss in frozen mixed vegetables for added convenience. This recipe calls for 2 cups of leftover quinoa and is ready in 35 minutes.

To use 3 cups...

9. Quinoa Stuffed Bell Peppers

Everything you need for a tasty balanced meal is in these stuffed peppers. This recipe from Damn Delicious is a simple and hearty vegetarian meal perfect for weeknights. This recipe uses 3 cups of quinoa and is ready in 50 minutes.

10. Greek Quinoa Salad

What better way to use your leftover quinoa than for a classic quinoa salad. This Greek Quinoa Salad from Wholefully is delicious and loaded with veggies. Prep this one ahead of time and pair it with some protein for a full balanced meal. This recipe uses 3 cups of quinoa and is ready in 20 minutes.

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