Quinoa: Calories, Nutrition Facts, Health Benefits, Healthy Recipes

Quinoa is an increasingly popular grain that has been gaining traction in recent years as a healthy, nutritious alternative to traditional grains. Grains are high in protein, fiber, and essential vitamins and minerals, making it a great choice for vegetarians, vegans, and anyone looking to boost the nutritional value of their meals. This ancient grain is also incredibly versatile; it can be used in a variety of dishes, from salads and stir-fries to desserts and breakfast items. In this post, we’ll explore the health benefits, its versatility as an ingredient, and some delicious recipes using it. We’ll also look at common mistakes to avoid when cooking with this unique grain. By the end of this post, you’ll be a quinoa expert, equipped with the knowledge to make the most of this nutritious superfood!

Quinoa Nutrition Facts and Calories Chart

It is an incredibly nutritious whole grain that is packed with essential vitamins and minerals. Quinoa is a great source of plant-based protein, fiber, and antioxidants. It also contains essential minerals like magnesium, phosphorus, and iron. Grains are low in fat and sodium, making it a healthy choice for those watching their weight or cholesterol levels. With its high nutritional content and delicious flavor, quinoa is a great addition to any meal. Nutritional value per 100 g quinoa:

  • Biotin: 0 mcg
  • Calcium: 18 mg
  • Carbohydrates (Carbs): 64 g
  • Chloride: 45 mg
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
  • Choline: 0 mg
  • Chromium: 0.1 mcg
  • Copper: 0.5 mg
  • Dietary Fiber: 5.2 g
  • Energy (Calories): 368 kcal
  • Fat: 6.1 g
  • Iodine: 0 mcg
  • Iron: 2.8 mg
  • Magnesium: 118 mg
  • Manganese: 1.2 mg
  • Molybdenum: 20.8 mcg
  • Pantothenic Acid: 0.5 mg
  • Phosphorus: 281 mg
  • Potassium: 318 mg
  • Protein: 14.1 g
  • Saturated fat: 0.9 g
  • Selenium: 11.8 mcg
  • Sodium: 10 mg
  • Sugars: 2.7 g
  • Vitamin A: 0 IU
  • Vitamin B1 (Thiamin): 0.3 mg
  • Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin): 0.2 mg
  • Vitamin B3 (Niacin): 2.1 mg
  • Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid): 0.5 mg
  • Vitamin B6: 0.3 mg
  • Vitamin B9 (Folate / Folic Acid): 61 mcg
  • Vitamin B12: 0 mcg
  • Vitamin C: 0 mg
  • Vitamin D: 0 IU
  • Vitamin E: 2.2 mg
  • Vitamin K: 0.1 mcg
  • Water: 11.2 g
  • Zinc: 2 mg

Quinoa in India

It is also known as Chenopodium quinoa (Scientific Binomial Name), Kinwa / Petty Rice (Common English). Quinoa is not locally grown in India so there is no Indian name associated with it. But Rajgira or Amaranath grain can be used as Quinoa in India. Rajgira is also known as Amaranthus cruentus, Chinese spinach, edible amaranth, wild blite, careless weed, Shravani Maath / Rajgira (Marathi), Chaulai / Lal sag / Ramdana (Hindi), rajgiri (Kannada), rajagiri (Sanskrit), Pu-n-kirai (Tamil), Gul-kesh (Urdu), (Ayurvedic), (Unani), (Bengali), (Telugu), (Malayalam).

Health Benefits

This plant, indigenous to the Pacific slopes of the Andes, constituted the most important article of food of the inhabitants of New Granada, Peru and Chile. Quinoa is a staple food in the Andes region in South America. It was known by the Incas as chisaya mama, ‘mother of all grains’. A high-quality oil obtained from the seeds has similar properties to corn oil.

  • Reduces Cholesterol: Some research suggests that quinoa grains are immuno-strengthening grains and also helps to reduce cholesterol.
  • Beneficial for Arthritis: Nutritive and anti-inflammatory properties of quinoa makes it as beneficial foods for arthritis.
  • High in Protein: Grains are good protein source and good for hypoglycemics, helping to keep blood sugar levels stable.
  • Good Source of Complex Carbohydrates: Grains also contain beneficial complex carbohydrates so use them liberally. Quinoa is good source of vitamins, minerals and complex carbohydrates. These carbohydrates provide fiber and release their sugars relatively slowly into the bloodstream. Refined carbohydrates lack fiber and lead to spikes in blood sugar, insulin, and insulin like growth factors, which can stimulate tumor growth.
  • Rich in Fiber: Fiber rich diets seem to protect against colon cancer. Fiber may help bind to potentially cancer causing substances in the bowel, thus preventing their absorption into the bloodstream. Breakdown products of fiber also support a healthy population of gut microorganisms, which, in turn, contribute to immune function.


Q. What is the best way to eat quinoa?
Here is a quick recipe to use full nutrition of quinoa and dry fruits.

  • Pour 1 cup almond milk into a saucepan and stir in the pinch of salt, 1 cup uncooked quinoa, and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon.
  • Heat the quinoa mixture over medium-low heat, stirring in 2 tablespoons of raisins and blueberries.
  • Continue stirring until the grain has soaked up the liquid and the raisins and blueberries plump up, about 10 minutes.
  • Add the honey.
  • Divide between two bowls, topped with 1 tablespoon yogurt and 2 tablespoons of crushed walnuts.

Q. Is quinoa OK for gluten intolerance?
Quinoa is currently attracting scientific interest as the grain-like seeds are gluten-free and so suitable for use by people with coeliac disease. Gliadin in gluten flattens out the mucosal lining of the intestines and makes it difficult to assimilate nutrients. High amounts of EPS (exopolysaccharides) could be achieved in gluten-free quinoa grains. Most quinoa grain sold has been processed by soaking and rinsing to reduce the levels of saponins that it contains.

Q. What does quinoa go well with?
Quinoa is a seed that is classified as a grain for culinary purposes. It is gluten-free and cooks up in 15 minutes with a fluffy, crunchy texture and a nutty flavor. It pairs nicely with a variety of herbs and vegetables. Variety of recipes can be try with these grains such as – Pasta, Muffins, Vegetable Salad, Burgers, Sushi, Spanish Curry, Side dish, Rice Pilau, Dressings, Chutney, etc. to achieve maximum health benefits during breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert.

Q. Is it really necessary to rinse quinoa before cooking? What is an easy recipe I can make with it?
A delicious soup can be prepared with nettle tender leaves, ginger, carrots, and quinoa. Before cooking place the quinoa in a strainer and rinse well with running water. Rinsing removes saponins from the surface of the quinoa. Saponins are natural plant chemicals that protect quinoa from insects that could destroy the plant; however, they can cause a bitter flavor in your final dish. The grains makes a very pleasant stomachic beverage; on being boiled, lengthens out in the form of worms and is excellent in soup. The leaves are also eaten and are tender and of an agreeable taste.

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