Quinoa with Caramelized Onions & Pine Nuts

So here we are, it’s finally Passover. Last week I shared with you a bunch of recipes that are suitable for the holiday, or any time of year because they don’t involve forcing yourself to substitute matzoh in everything you make. In preparation for Passover, I finally convinced my mother to try quinoa. I had mentioned quinoa for the past three years or so as something kosher for Passover, but Ma can be a little weary of breaking tradition. (There’s nothing wrong with that – if I’m going to venture out and serve Sephardic charoset balls on Passover, someone needs to make the Ashkenazic chopped apple version we know and love!)

So as I was saying, a few weeks before Passover I was talking about quinoa yet again, and Mom said, “Oh! I meant to tell you, I finally bought some!” And she even went on to admit: She thinks she likes it better than couscous. And it doesn’t hurt that Dad liked it too. Since quinoa is a much healthier grain, that cooks in just about the same time as couscous, and can be doctored up with any of the same ingredients you might put in couscous, why not make it part of your diet year round?

This version is sweet and nutty with caramelized onions and pine nuts, and brightened up with some citrus zest.

Caramelized Onion & Pine Nut Quinoa
Printable Recipe

1 tablespoon pine nuts
1 teaspoon olive oil

1 cup (100gm) thinly sliced sweet yellow onion
1/2 cup (90gm) quinoa
1 cup water
1-2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 teaspoon orange zest

In a small saucepan over low heat, toast the pine nuts. Stir occasionaly until lightly browned and fragrant. Remove from the pan and set aside.

Add the olive oil the pan and increase heat to medium. When the oil is hot, add the sliced onion. Cook for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally and reducing heat if necessary to prevent sticking. Hint: adding some water to the pan also helps the onions caramelize without additional fat. When the onions are a golden brown color and softened, remove from pan and set aside with the pine nuts.

Combine the quinoa and water in the saucepan, bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10-15 minutes. When water is fully absorbed, turn off heat and stir in reserved pine nuts and caramelized onions, parsely, and orange zest. Season to taste with salt.

Nutritional Info
Servings Per Recipe: 2
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 271.1
Total Fat: 11.0 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 4.8 mg
Total Carbs: 36.7 g
Dietary Fiber: 4.3 g
Protein: 7.9 g

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41 Responses to “Quinoa with Caramelized Onions & Pine Nuts”

  1. 1

    quarterlifewellness — March 29, 2010 @ 11:51 am Reply

    Yum!! Anything with caramelized onions is good in my book!

  2. 2

    yumventures — March 29, 2010 @ 1:05 pm Reply

    I love that your Mom now loves quinoa! I love the texture of it :) The orange sounds like it would add a lovely layer to this dish…delicious!

  3. 3

    Dawn — March 29, 2010 @ 2:43 pm Reply

    Dang you are on a roll with the quinoa. I love it! I agree with quarterlifewellness…anything is good with caramlized onions!

  4. 4

    marla {Family Fresh Cooking} — March 29, 2010 @ 3:58 pm Reply

    I couldn't agree more….Quinoa has the same texture as couscous but such a better health profile. Your recipe looks awesome, love caramelized onions!Most importantly…..YOU BLOG LOOKS AWESOME!!! Love all your changes & updates. So clean & professional. great work girl. Time for me to make some changes too!! My hubs has been working on updates……..

  5. 5

    That Girl — March 29, 2010 @ 4:17 pm Reply

    I just made a quinoa dish last night to bring to the family seder tomorrow night. I took my favorite couscous dish and subbed in quinoa and added saffron. Fabulous.

  6. 6

    Lisa — March 29, 2010 @ 9:35 pm Reply

    Kinda wish I could go to your seder tonight and try all your yummy food! Have a good holiday!

  7. 7

    TJ — March 29, 2010 @ 10:43 pm Reply

    mmm this looks good! My Mom hated couscous, I made a nice salad with it. Then told me that she hated quinoa too. *sigh* Oh and she dislikes brown rice as well. I can;t get her to eat healthy for the life of me! lol Oh well! :)

  8. 8

    Nicole Chow - HealthyChow.com — March 30, 2010 @ 4:21 am Reply

    I love quinoa and this recipe makes me love it even more! The combination of caramelized onion and orange zest sounds fantastic. This is definitely going in my 'saved recipe' folder. Happy Passover!

  9. 9

    Kim — March 30, 2010 @ 7:29 am Reply

    Hey, I finally made your brownies…FINALLY. Sorry it took so long, but I plugged you in over at my blog. I hope you don't mind. The recipe passed the husband test. lol :)

  10. 10

    *Naomi* — March 30, 2010 @ 6:03 pm Reply

    YES you can eat quinoa for passover! i remembered that from last year!!

  11. 11

    grace — March 31, 2010 @ 10:36 am Reply

    great batch of the q-stuff, cara! it has everything one could want in a side–crunch, fresh herbage, sweetness, and zing. bravo!

  12. 12

    Lois B — March 31, 2010 @ 4:34 pm Reply

    I've only recently discovered quinoa; I've got to try this. The flavors sound great.

  13. 13

    Allison — March 31, 2010 @ 8:38 pm Reply

    This sounds wonderful! I love caramelized onions, and I haven't had quinoa in ages! I can't wait to try this :)

  14. 14

    Kerstin — April 3, 2010 @ 5:23 am Reply

    You had me at caramelized onions – looks fantastic!

  15. 15

    Kim — March 28, 2011 @ 8:36 pm Reply

    Hey, I finally made your brownies…FINALLY. Sorry it took so long, but I plugged you in over at my blog. I hope you don't mind. The recipe passed the husband test. lol :)

  16. 16

    Lisa — March 28, 2011 @ 8:36 pm Reply

    Kinda wish I could go to your seder tonight and try all your yummy food! Have a good holiday!

  17. 17

    That Girl — March 28, 2011 @ 8:36 pm Reply

    I just made a quinoa dish last night to bring to the family seder tomorrow night. I took my favorite couscous dish and subbed in quinoa and added saffron. Fabulous.

  18. 18

    marla {Family Fresh Cooking} — March 28, 2011 @ 8:36 pm Reply

    I couldn't agree more….Quinoa has the same texture as couscous but such a better health profile. Your recipe looks awesome, love caramelized onions!Most importantly…..YOU BLOG LOOKS AWESOME!!! Love all your changes & updates. So clean & professional. great work girl. Time for me to make some changes too!! My hubs has been working on updates……..

  19. 19

    Dawn — March 28, 2011 @ 8:36 pm Reply

    Dang you are on a roll with the quinoa. I love it! I agree with quarterlifewellness…anything is good with caramlized onions!

  20. 20

    yumventures — March 28, 2011 @ 8:36 pm Reply

    I love that your Mom now loves quinoa! I love the texture of it :) The orange sounds like it would add a lovely layer to this dish…delicious!

  21. 21

    quarterlifewellness — March 28, 2011 @ 8:36 pm Reply

    Yum!! Anything with caramelized onions is good in my book!

  22. 22

    TJ — March 28, 2011 @ 8:37 pm Reply

    mmm this looks good! My Mom hated couscous, I made a nice salad with it. Then told me that she hated quinoa too. *sigh* Oh and she dislikes brown rice as well. I can;t get her to eat healthy for the life of me! lol Oh well! :)

  23. 23

    Nicole Chow - HealthyChow.com — March 28, 2011 @ 8:38 pm Reply

    I love quinoa and this recipe makes me love it even more! The combination of caramelized onion and orange zest sounds fantastic. This is definitely going in my 'saved recipe' folder. Happy Passover!

  24. 24

    Kerstin — March 28, 2011 @ 8:52 pm Reply

    You had me at caramelized onions – looks fantastic!

  25. 25

    Kerstin — March 28, 2011 @ 8:52 pm Reply

    You had me at caramelized onions – looks fantastic!

  26. 26

    Allison — March 28, 2011 @ 8:52 pm Reply

    This sounds wonderful! I love caramelized onions, and I haven't had quinoa in ages! I can't wait to try this :)

  27. 27

    Lois B — March 28, 2011 @ 8:53 pm Reply

    I've only recently discovered quinoa; I've got to try this. The flavors sound great.

  28. 28

    Lois B — March 28, 2011 @ 8:53 pm Reply

    I've only recently discovered quinoa; I've got to try this. The flavors sound great.

  29. 29

    *Naomi* — March 28, 2011 @ 8:53 pm Reply

    YES you can eat quinoa for passover! i remembered that from last year!!

  30. 30

    grace — March 28, 2011 @ 8:53 pm Reply

    great batch of the q-stuff, cara! it has everything one could want in a side–crunch, fresh herbage, sweetness, and zing. bravo!

  31. 31

    Kerstin — March 29, 2011 @ 2:03 am Reply

    You had me at caramelized onions – looks fantastic!

  32. 32

    *Naomi* — March 29, 2011 @ 2:03 am Reply

    YES you can eat quinoa for passover! i remembered that from last year!!

  33. 33

    TJ — March 29, 2011 @ 2:03 am Reply

    mmm this looks good! My Mom hated couscous, I made a nice salad with it. Then told me that she hated quinoa too. *sigh* Oh and she dislikes brown rice as well. I can;t get her to eat healthy for the life of me! lol Oh well! :)

  34. 34

    Lisa — March 29, 2011 @ 2:03 am Reply

    Kinda wish I could go to your seder tonight and try all your yummy food! Have a good holiday!

  35. 35

    Lisa — April 5, 2011 @ 1:12 am Reply

    Kinda wish I could go to your seder tonight and try all your yummy food! Have a good holiday!

  36. 36

    grace — April 5, 2011 @ 1:12 am Reply

    great batch of the q-stuff, cara! it has everything one could want in a side–crunch, fresh herbage, sweetness, and zing. bravo!

  37. 37

    Lois B — April 5, 2011 @ 1:12 am Reply

    I've only recently discovered quinoa; I've got to try this. The flavors sound great.

  38. 38

    Kerstin — April 5, 2011 @ 1:12 am Reply

    You had me at caramelized onions – looks fantastic!

  39. 39

    Allison — April 5, 2011 @ 1:12 am Reply

    This sounds wonderful! I love caramelized onions, and I haven't had quinoa in ages! I can't wait to try this :)

  40. 40

    Emily Beaver — June 6, 2011 @ 5:31 pm Reply

    I made this last night and my whole family loved it!  It's actually the first time I've cooked quinoa at home and I think it's going to become a regular.  I can't wait to try some of your other recipes for it!

  41. 41

    Lisa Eirene — July 15, 2011 @ 7:05 pm Reply

    This sounds amazing!!

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