Power Up Your Bowl: One-Pot Lentils And Quinoa

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Quinoa and lentils are nutritional superstars, each boasting an impressive profile of protein, fiber, and essential vitamins and minerals. But when cooked together, their powers combine to create a protein-packed, fiber-rich meal that’s not only delicious but incredibly versatile. This guide will walk you through the steps of cooking quinoa and lentils together, providing you with a base for countless healthy and flavorful dishes.


Lentil Quinoa Salad (High Protein + Easy!) - The Garden Grazer
Lentil Quinoa Salad (High Protein + Easy!) – The Garden Grazer

1 cup quinoa, rinsed

  • 1 cup brown lentils, rinsed
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

  • Instructions:

    1. Heat the oil: In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the diced onion and cook until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes.
    2. Sauté the garlic and thyme: Add the minced garlic and dried thyme to the pan with the onions and cook for an additional minute, stirring constantly until fragrant.
    3. Combine the rinsed quinoa and lentils: Add the rinsed quinoa and lentils to the saucepan. Stir to coat the grains with the oil and spices.
    4. Pour in the vegetable broth: Pour in the vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid, and simmer for 20-25 minutes, or until the quinoa and lentils are cooked through and the liquid has been absorbed.
    5. Fluff and season: Remove the pan from heat and let it sit for 5 minutes, covered, to allow the grains to steam further. Fluff the quinoa and lentils with a fork and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

    Nutrition Facts (per serving):

    Calories: 280

  • Fat: 5g
  • Saturated Fat: 1g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg
  • Sodium: (depends on added salt)
  • Carbohydrates: 45g
  • Fiber: 10g
  • Protein: 18g

  • Note: These are approximate nutrition facts based on the ingredients listed. The actual values may vary depending on the specific brands of ingredients you use.


    This basic recipe for cooking quinoa and lentils together creates a nutritious and flavorful base for countless meals. You can enjoy it warm as a side dish, add it to salads, use it as a vegetarian taco filling, or even transform it into veggie burgers. Get creative and explore the endless possibilities!

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

    1. Can I substitute white lentils for brown lentils?

    Absolutely! White lentils cook faster than brown lentils, so you may need to adjust the cooking time slightly. Start by checking the doneness of the lentils after 15 minutes of simmering.

    2. What can I use instead of vegetable broth?

    You can substitute water for the vegetable broth. However, the broth will add additional flavor to the dish. If you don’t have vegetable broth, you can use low-sodium chicken broth or even a bouillon cube dissolved in hot water.

    3. How can I add more protein to the dish?

    For an extra protein boost, you can stir in cooked, shredded chicken or tofu towards the end of the cooking process.

    4. How can I add more flavor to the dish?

    There are endless ways to customize the flavor profile. Try adding other vegetables like chopped carrots, bell peppers, or zucchini while sautéing the onions. You can also experiment with different spices like cumin, smoked paprika, or curry powder.

    5. Can I cook quinoa and lentils in a rice cooker?