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Vegetable Fried Quinoa

If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.

– J.R.R. Tolkien.

I recently bought a bag of quinoa. While, I have eaten it before, until last week, I’d yet to actually cook this fantastic little grain. I was trying to figure out what to make with it when I was flipping through Extending the Table and came across one of my favourite recipes from that cookbook called Vietnamese Fried Rice. A quick skim over the contents, a look around my kitchen and I came up with the below recipe.

I liked the recipe so much that I made it again this week for my lunches.

While this recipe does borrow heavily from the original recipe (coming soon), substituting quinoa for rice was not the only change that I made. I hope you like this recipe and that you find it an easy one to make when you are craving something a little different.

Vegetable Fried Quinoa

serves 2-3


  • 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa,*
  • 1 dried chili
  • 1-2 bay leaves
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled
  • 3 tbsp sunflower/grapeseed oil
  • 3 cloves garlic sliced
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • 1 cup shredded white cabbage
  • 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tbsp fish sauce*
  • 1/2 cup leftover green peas, cooked.
  • 1 egg, beaten


  1. Cook quinoa as per package directions with the chili, bay leaf and peeled garlic.
  2. Remove the seasonings from the quinoa  and discard.
  3. Set the quinoa aside.
  4. Heat a frying pan on high heat. Once hot, add oil and heat for a further 15-20 seconds.
  5. Add garlic, onion, carrot, cabbage, black pepper, sugar, soy sauce, sesame oil and fish sauce.
  6. Stir fry for 2-3 minutes.
  7. Stir in the cooked quinoa and stir fry for a further 5 minutes.
  8. Then add the peas and cook for a further 30 seconds to 1 minute.
  9. Reduce to a medium heat and add the egg, stirring constantly until it is cooked through.
  10. Serve immediately.

*You can make the quinoa up the night before, or use leftover quinoa from a different recipe. I cooked a batch up on Sunday night, and made this recipe on Tuesday night.

**For a vegetarian recipe, leave out the fish sauce. You could substitute some Worcester sauce or add an extra ½ tbsp of sesame oil, if you’d like.


Make it for a larger crowd: Double the amount of quinoa as well as the seasonings (black pepper, sesame oil, soy sauce, sugar and fish sauce) and add a second egg. The amount of vegetables can stay the same.

Make it your own: Substitute any leftover vegetables like peppers, courgette or cucumber for the carrot and cabbage. You could substitute spinach for the peas. To thicken it up, you could add a second egg (this makes it more gooey and the seasoning more subtle).


  1. katemckelvey says

    Wow! This is so good. Just whipped it up for lunch with leftover quinoa and it took about 5 minutes. I used your suggestion for subbing sesame oil for fish sauce and it turned out beautifully. Definitely making this again!

    • So, glad you like it and the sesame oil subsitution.
      I think I’ll be making it for lunches next week so I can use up any stray vegetables.

  2. I really enjoy this dish. It’s so easy to make I’ve already made it a ton of times

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