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What To Serve With Quinoa? Discover The 9 Best Side Dishes

Maria Foster
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by Maria Foster

Quinoa is a highly nutritious and versatile food that has become increasingly popular in recent years.

Originally from the Andean region of South America, quinoa is rich in protein, fiber, and various essential vitamins and minerals.

What To Serve With Quinoa Discover The 9 Best Side Dishes

It’s mild flavor and fluffy texture make it a great base for a variety of dishes, from salads to bowls to side dishes. But what are the best side dishes to serve with quinoa?

Choosing the right side dish to complement quinoa can be tricky, especially if you want to balance the flavors and nutrition of your meal.

While quinoa is a great source of protein and fiber, it is not always easy to pair it with other ingredients that won’t overpower its delicate taste.

In this article, we will explore the best side dishes to serve with quinoa. Whether you’re looking for a light and refreshing salad, a hearty and filling stew, or a zesty and flavorful stir-fry, we’ve got you covered.

So, let’s dive into the world of quinoa and discover the 9 best side dishes to serve with it!

1. Marinated Grilled Zucchini

This Italian appetizer works wonderfully as a side dish for quinoa. It’s especially great if you’re serving your quinoa as part of a salad and are looking for some complimentary dishes for a lunch party.

It has a fresh taste and is packed with vitamins and minerals, such as Vitamin B6, which may be able to help with the regulation of glucose in the body.

When cooked correctly, your zucchini should retain some of its crispness as well!

The recipe is made with zucchini, and you can mix and match white and yellow zucchini if you wish. You’ll need to cook the zucchini for a few minutes first before adding it to the marinade. This is made from parsley, garlic, basil, and some white wine vinegar.

Leave the zucchini to marinade for at least 30 minutes before serving.

2. Steamed Mediterranean Kale

Kale has a reputation for being a superfood and is packed with different nutrients that match perfectly with the nutritional benefits of quinoa.

Each serving of kale is packed with vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin K, as well as numerous antioxidants, fiber, iron, and beta-carotene.

This means that kale may help your immune system, protect against heart disease and cancer, and may keep your eyes healthy as well.

Steaming kale instead of preparing it in other ways ensures that all of this goodness remains locked into the vegetable.

It’s an easy cooking process to master as well, and will make your vegetables taste great!

This recipe for Mediterranean kale seasons the kale with lemon juice, soy sauce, and some minced garlic. The different flavors work together perfectly to make this a delicious side dish.

3. Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Garlic

Brussels sprouts often have a bad reputation as being boring and not particularly tasty, but we think that is unfair.

When cooked correctly, these little green veggies can be as delicious as any other, and they’re very healthy!

In any serving of Brussels sprouts you’ll find vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin K, as well as lots of fiber, potassium, and folate.

Brussels sprouts can also help with inflammation, making them a wonderful accompaniment to quinoa.

Although this recipe for roasted Brussels sprouts is very simple, there are many different variations on the basic dish.

Consider adding red pepper flakes, Parmesan cheese, lemon, or balsamic vinegar to make the dish really pop!

4. Red Cabbage And Carrot Slaw

Coleslaw is one of those side dishes that works with almost anything, and quinoa is no different.

The mix of different flavors, ingredients, and crunch you always get with coleslaw makes this dish a favorite in many households across the country.

We love this recipe for coleslaw because it’s not only healthy, but the mix of colors makes it look amazing as well!

It’s quick and easy to make as well, so if time isn’t on your side, but you want something that is full of flavor, this recipe might be what you need.

The base of the salad is made from red cabbage, carrots, and green onions.

The vinaigrette is made from a variety of ingredients including organic apple cider vinegar, Dijon mustard, garlic, and lemon juice.

For flavor, you can add some more ingredients such as honey, vanilla extract, or chili powder.

As you can see, there’s no mayonnaise in sight in this recipe, so you’ll not only get a delicious coleslaw but one made from healthier ingredients!

5. Healthy Egg Salad

Eggs are a great source of protein and are packed full of nutrients such as Vitamins A, B5, B12, and B2.

They’re low in fat but can have a variety of different benefits to the body, so finding new ways to add them to your diet is always worthwhile.

However, serving just eggs as a side dish is not particularly impressive! That’s why we’ve picked this delicious Mediterranean-style egg salad that can be created from scratch in less than half an hour.

You will need to hard-boil your eggs first and then slice them into quarters before seasoning them with Aleppo chili and some pepper.

The rest of the salad consists of avocados, cucumber, red onions, and tomatoes. Add some extra virgin olive oil and a little lemon juice for the dressing.

6. Spicy Corn Fritters With Cilantro Cream

Just the name of this recipe is enough to get our mouths watering! These fritters are a unique recipe that is sure to impress anyone who tries them.

They’re also completely vegetarian and, when not being used as a quinoa side dish, will also work perfectly as an appetizer or main in their own right.

The spicy part of the recipe name comes from the addition of some smoked paprika and jalapeño into the mix.

The fritters shouldn’t be too hot, but should be nicely spiced so that the flavors come to the fore.

The rest of the ingredients include corn kernels, red bell peppers, scallions, cheese, eggs, milk, and flour.

The fritters should take around 10 to 15 minutes to cook and should be light and puffy when they’re ready. Serve with a sauce made from cilantro, sour cream, and seasoning.

7. Homemade Vegetable Soup

If you’re eating quinoa during some of the colder months of the year, you might want something warmer and more filling for a side dish.

As no side dishes are more hearty and warming than vegetable soup, this is a great side dish for when the temperature drops a little.

Vegetable soups are infinitely customizable, as you can easily adjust the number of vegetables or swap one vegetable for another if you wish. We like this recipe as is, however, as it’s easy to make and has a delicious soup base.

The vegetables included are onion, carrot, celery, tomatoes, potato, cabbage, and peas. You can see from this list that this soup is bursting with different vitamins and minerals and will keep you full and healthy.

8. Grilled Cilantro Lime Chicken

You may have noticed that so far, we haven’t included any meat dishes.

Most of our side dishes have been pretty light as well, but if you are looking for a more substantial side dish that has a hefty dose of protein included, then this side dish might be for you.

Chicken breast flavored with lime and cilantro is a great side dish for spring and summer due to the light flavors included.

If cilantro isn’t for you, you can substitute this for ginger instead. The dominant flavor is the lime, so removing cilantro won’t make a major difference to the recipe.

This is best made with boneless chicken breasts, and they should be marinated in a mix of cilantro, sugar, lime zest, lime juice, and olive oil.

You will need to marinate the chicken for at least 30 minutes, and you can even leave it overnight. Grilling the chicken is pretty quick, thankfully!

9. Homemade Vegetarian Chili

For our final side dish, we’ve picked another substantial side dish.

Chili is typically made with meat and you can opt for a meat version, but we like this vegetarian option as it’s healthy and suitable for a wider variety of people.

Chili is very filling and can keep you warm during colder weather. This chili is made with black beans and pinto beans, as well as a wide variety of vegetables such as carrots and celery.

You can adjust the amount of chili powder, cumin, and smoked paprika to make the chili suitable for your spice levels.

Final Thoughts

In this article, we introduced nine great ideas for quinoa side dishes. We picked a variety of different dishes, with the majority of them being vegetarian.

About Maria Foster
Maria Foster
Maria Foster is a mother of 3 and she and her husband of 23 years share their home with 2 faithful dogs. Besides being CEO of the household and active in her community, Maria is the lead contributor to Food Champs and loves to try new food ideas and kitchen accessories to make easier and more delicious meals.
Maria Foster
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