Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Vegan Creamy Quinoa Breakfast "Oatmeal"

We love oatmeal and all the millions of ways you can dress it up, mix it up and eat it up.  Did you know you can do the same thing with quinoa?  Yes, quinoa (KEEN-wah): the super grain, the full-complete-protein, the tasty alternative to oatmeal.

Quinoa, it's what's for breakfast.

Vegan Creamy Quinoa Breakfast "Oatmeal"

3/4 cup quinoa
2 cups vanilla almond or soy milk (can use dairy milk if "vegan" is not important to you)
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (use a full teaspoon if using non-vanilla milk)

pinch of salt
1-2 tablespoons maple syrup (optional--can replace with fruit)

Rinse the quinoa well in a fine sieve.  This removes the outer germ and makes the quinoa much tastier.

In a medium sauce pan, bring the milk, cinnamon, vanilla and salt to a boil.  Add the rinsed quinoa.  Reduce to a simmer.  Cover and allow to simmer for 10 minutes.

Remove lid, stir and continue to simmer until desired creaminess is reached--remember, this is a creamy quinoa, so not all the liquid will be absorbed, but you don't want the quinoa to be undercooked, so give a spoonful (cool it off first!) a quick taste to see what you think.  You probably will want to simmer an additional 2-5 minutes.

Add the maple syrup, if desired.

Serves 2-3 as a hearty breakfast.

Need some inspiration on how to jazz it up?  Here are our favorite combinations:

Almond and Apricot Creamy Quinoa Breakfast:  add a small handful of slivered almonds and sliced dried apricots.

Apple and Raisin Creamy Quinoa Breakfast:  dice up half an apple and add some raisins.

Chai Tea Creamy Quinoa Breakfast:  while the quinoa is simmering uncovered, add a decaffeinated Chai tea bag to allow the Chai flavors to steep.  Add any desired fruit.

Pumpkin Spice Creamy Quinoa Breakfast:  add a pinch of nutmeg and ginger, 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves and 1/2 cup pumpkin puree.

Blueberry Walnut Quinoa Breakfast:  add 1/2 cup blueberries and a small handful of chopped walnuts.

Pineapple Ginger Quinoa Breakfast:  add minced fresh ginger to taste (or ground ginger) and 1/2 cup chopped pineapple.

What will be your favorite?

Life is sweet,


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