Eating a quinoa breakfast gives a great nutritional start to your day. It will keep you full for hours thanks to the 8 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber in just one cup! Quinoa is technically a seed, not a grain, and packs all nine essential amino acids your body needs. It contains iron, vitamin B, and my fav–the calming mineral, magnesium! This is just a few of the nutrients in quinoa, there are much more!
2 Staple Quinoa Breakfast Toppings: Chia & Hemp
If you top your quinoa breakfast bowls with chia and hemp seeds, you add even more health benefits. It ups the protein, fiber, and those good omega’s.
Chia seeds have 5 grams of fiber per tablespoon, which is a big deal, as most people are not getting enough fiber in their diet.
Hemp seeds contain all essential amino acids, just like quinoa, which is unusual for plant protein sources, so they are a great addition for people on a vegetarian or vegan diet. I like to think that the good fats (omega-3 alpha-linolenic acids) in hemp (and chia, and quinoa!) help keep my skin looking as fresh and smooth as possible.
How to make Quinoa
Making quinoa is very similar to making rice, but with the extra step of rinsing the quinoa. Rinsing is no big deal, just measure into a fine mesh strainer, rinse and strain.
1 cup quinoa (any variety–white, golden, red, black or a mixture)
2 cups water
1/2 teaspoon salt
2-quart saucepan with lid
Rinse the quinoa –this is important. Quinoa has a natural coating, called saponin, that can make the cooked grain taste bitter or soapy. Luckily, it’s easy to get rid of this coating just by rinsing the quinoa just before cooking. Boxed quinoa is often pre-rinsed, but it doesn’t hurt to give the seeds an additional rinse at home.
Measure 1 cups of quinoa and place into a fine-mesh strainer. Rinse thoroughly with cool water. Rub and swish the quinoa with your hand while rinsing. Drain.
Add rinsed quinoa to the pan. Add liquid and salt and bring to a rolling boil.
Turn heat down to the lowest setting. Cover and cook for 15 minutes.
Remove the pot from the heat and let stand for 5 more minutes, covered. Don’t peek!
Remove the lid. Fluff the quinoa gently with a fork, and serve. If any liquid remains in the bottom of the pan or if the quinoa is still a bit crunchy, return the pot to low heat and cook, covered for another 5 minutes. until all the water has been absorbed.
Rice Cooker Instructions:
Use 2:1 liquid-to-quinoa ratio and cook according to rice cooker instructions.
Instant Pot Instructions:
1 1/2 c water | 1 c rinsed quinoa| 1/2 t salt | 1 min | HP | NR
Combine one cup rinsed quinoa, 1 1/2 cups water, and 1/2 t. salt in the Instant Pot. Seal and set it to cook on high pressure (HP) for 1 minute. Use natural release (NR).
Add quinoa to a jar, bowl or glass. Top with peaches. Sprinkle with seed & cinnamon. Drizzle with maple syrup. Add almond milk to your taste.
Tips & Tricks for Easy Breakfast Quinoa
~want to top your breakfast quinoa with crunchy quinoa? Click here for the recipe.
~make a large batch of quinoa at the beginning of the week.
~store in quart mason jars for easy to see and grab from the refrigerator
~keep seeds and toppings together in the cabinet to easily grab for easy morning breakfast prep
~heat quinoa for those chilly mornings
~one cup of dry quinoa yields about 3 cups of cooked quinoa
~to cook one cup of quinoa, you need 2 cups of liquid
I will be sharing some more of my favorite quinoa breakfast bowls and toppings, like Chocolate Cherry Coconut and Pumpkin Spice for fall! Make sure you are subscribed to our email list so you don’t miss a post!
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I’ve been all about super simple recipes, and these 3 ingredient protein pancakes could not be easier! They are my new food crush and are great for breakfast, brunch, lunch, snack or “brinner” (breakfast for dinner).
These are not fluffy, carb loaded, make-pancakes-for-your-out-of-town company type pancakes. No, these are pancakes you make when you are craving carbs or a sweet but want to eat healthy and stay away from empty calories.
After eating these pancakes, you will not have the typical sugar crash that comes 30 minutes after eating simple carbs. These kill the cravings, are low calorie, and fill you up. I make little dollar size pancakes, eat all 10 of them, and know when I’m done that I just ate 2 protein-filled eggs, a fiber-rich banana, and omega’s from the chia. If you choose to top it off like I do, with smushed berries and cinnamon, you will also have a nice dose of antioxidants! All of this with just minutes of simple prep.
Protein Pancakes Pack A Punch
236 calories, and pack a whipping 12.6 grams of protein and 540 mg of potassium!
Not a bad return for such an easy-to-make recipe. I love making recipes are simple but give a great headway into the daily nutrients our bodies need.
Chia Packs a Punch
3 Ingredient Protein Pancakes are a great way to utilize my favorite little seed…CHIA! I’ve bragged about the punch this little seeds pack when talking about another breakfast favorite —No Cook Overnight Breakfast Chia Oat Pudding. How fun to have 2 breakfast options that include chia.
Why eat chia?
Packed with omega-3, protein, rare antioxidants, and fiber
Excellent source of essential minerals such as phosphorous, manganese, calcium, sodium, and potassium
3 tablespoons contains 6 times more calcium than whole milk, and 30% more antioxidants than blueberries!
Blend above ingredients together. Warm non stick pan to medium heat and add a little coconut oil to the pan. Cook silver dollar size pancakes about 30 seconds on each side. Stack on a plate. Serves 1.
Fast Berry Compote Topping:
I smash up berries with just a touch of organic real maple syrup to sweeten, and a sprinkle of cinnamon and a squeeze of lemon juice. This is so delicious and much healthier than dousing the pancakes with syrup. If I am out of fresh berries, I will just thaw some frozen berries while I’m cooking my pancakes — they work just as well and naturally make more syrup.
I cannot get enough cranberries for some reason this season! I crave them. It all started around Thanksgiving with my Hall of Fame Cranberry Sauce, which was so good that I started putting it on my toast in the morning. Then the New Year hit and I wanted a healthier version, so I came up with this Cranberry Chia Jam recipe. This awesome recipe is sweetened naturally & packed with 2 superfoods; cranberries and chia seeds.
Cranberries are so very healthy. According to WebMD:
Cranberries have vitamin C and fiber, and are only 45 calories per cup. In disease-fighting antioxidants, cranberries outrank nearly every fruit and vegetable–including strawberries, spinach, broccoli, red grapes, apples, raspberries, and cherries.
One cup of whole cranberries has 8,983 total antioxidant capacity. Only blueberries can top that: Wild varieties have 13,427; cultivated blueberries have 9,019.
Cranberries are amazing, but being as tart as they are, it is tempting to use sugar to sweeten them up. There is a reason my Hall of Fame Cranberry Sauce is so good, and that is the 1 1/2 cups of brown sugar in it! I am really trying to detox from sugar so I had to find a way to keep my cranberry -jammed toast habit, but dump the sugar.
My solution was to sweeten the recipe up with honey or maple syrup instead of brown sugar, and cut the amount of sweetness way down. Another way I added some sweetness is by using the juice of the orange. The recipe calls for grated orange peel, so it made sense to use the juice from the orange as a natural sweetener.
Using juice and a liquid natural sweetener made the cranberry mixture a bit too runny after cooking, so my solution to this was chia seeds! I was giddy to think that not only would they thicken the jam and act as pectin would in regular jam recipes, (chia seeds swell and turn gelatinous) but they would add more health benefits on top of my toast!
Here are a few reasons why chia seeds are my favorite seed:
~they are jammed packed with protein and minerals and healthy fats and fiber
~they provide more plant-based Omega 3’s than any other food, even FLAX
~5 times the calcium of milk, plus boron which is a trace mineral that helps transfer calcium to bones
~8 times the omega 3’s found in salmon
~3 times more iron than spinach
~2 times the amount of potassium than bananas
~more antioxidants than found in blueberries
~they have 5 GRAMS of fiber PER TABLESPOON!
~the are a complete source of protein, providing all the essential amino acids
~can be stored for years without deterioration of flavor or color
~they are flavorless and dissolve in juice, soups, stews, shakes etc..
~they are low-calorie way to get super FULL!
My Morning Toast Habit
I am in a major morning toast habit. I have found my favorite bread from Sam’s called Dave’s Killer Bread, and it is full of seeds and nuts and all kinds of organic goodness. It has 6 grams of protein, 4 grams of fiber & 670mg of Omega 3’s due to all of the great flax and pumpkin seeds in it. I make 2 slices so all of that goodness doubled. I like to use a softer bread for sandwiches, unless they are grilled or Panini pressed, but this bread is delicious with just a touch of sweet & makes wonderful toast. I buy it in bulk and freeze it. I take it straight from the freezer to the toaster. You can buy it here on Amazon or at Sam’s.
I use either Earth Balance spread or organic butter…whatever we have on hand. We do not drink milk around here but I have added some organic animal products back into our diet. We just do better health- wise with some good organic animal fats & protein, and it especially seems to be a positive thing for our family when it comes to brain health– but that is another post!
Cranberry Chia Jam As A Gift
Here is where I have to make a confession. I had a jar of my Hall of Fame Cranberry Sauce all packaged up and ready to give to my sweet neighbors during the Christmas season. They always give us great home-baked goods and I wanted to send a little something their way, too. I even shared a picture of it on my New Nostalgia Facebook page. I made a jar for them and a jar for us. Confession: I ate the jar for us… and the jar for them. I know! I know! I just couldn’t imagine my toast without cranberry sauce on top and mine ran out so I just had to open their jar and help myself.
Because of my selfishness, our poor neighbors didn’t get a gift until New Year’s…ok…I confess, I delivered it just yesterday. But, I feel like it all worked out well. They are very health conscience, so it felt great to give them my Cranberry Chia Jam instead of the sugar-filled Hall of Fame Cranberry Sauce, and last night I got a text from my neighbor letting me know he was looking forward to toast in the morning. I did have to dump the original Christmas packaging idea, and instead added a fun polka dot tag and a little hint of sparkle, as New Year’s day really was not THAT long ago, right?
Super moist pumpkin muffins– you will not believe there is no oil in these muffins. The moisture comes from applesauce and bananas. The perfect amount of cinnamon spice and just a bit of chocolate chips make these muffins a family fall favorite recipe.
Chia seeds aren’t only great for snacking, but they also make great beauty products. Considering their beautifying power, it was only a matter of time until these little superfoods made their way into serums and eye creams. Chia seeds have important antioxidants including Alpha Lipoic Acid, which minimizes fine lines and pore size, and phytonutrients which help reveal smoother, more radiant skin. With all these great qualities, you should eat your chia seeds and put them on your face! Lately I’ve been seeing beauty products now on the market that use chia seed oil due to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits. These products can be expensive so you may want to go the d.i.y. route with my coconut-chia mask.
This mask is great since the chia seeds exfoliate and help moisturize, the coconut oil is hydrating, and the lemon juice works to remove age spots and tighten pores.
1 tablespoon solid coconut oil, (make sure its cold-pressed, virgin and organic)
2 teaspoons chia seeds
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
Combine ingredients and let stand for 20 minutes or so for the chia seeds to plump up. If coconut oil is melted you may want to stick in the fridge for a few minutes so that it is firm and will stay on your face. Apply to your face with a Fan Brush or pastry brush and let sit for 2-5 minutes. Wet hands and in a circular motion rub chia seeds into skin before wiping off with a cold wash cloth. If the coconut oil feel is too much for your skin, follow with a toner (like my triple threat toner), otherwise pat dry. No moisturizer needed since the coconut oil provides plenty! Have extra? Apply to the back of your hands — they’ll be silky smooth!
After Lisa spent years advancing her finance career and prioritizing everything except her health, she decided to make a change. Putting her curiosity for learning to a new area, Lisa now spends her free time researching and creating simple, healthy recipes and easy, natural d.i.y. beauty products. Lisa lives in Los Angeles with her miniature schnauzer, Romeo.
Not only are these tiny seeds full or protein, omega 3 and loaded with vitamins minerals and antioxidants, they are also extremely versatile and a great staple in my cupboard always.
Here are a few of the things I do with my chia seeds:
~I add it to bread mixes
~I make raw chia crackers
~I use it as an egg replacement in my cooking
~I make chia cereal
~I add it to smoothies
~I grind them and add to raw goodie balls
But today I want to share with you my latest flavour combination and addiction.
Sugar Free Creamy Chia Cup
1 – 2 Tablespoons of chia seeds
9 or more Tablespoons of almond milk (add more if needed as the seeds swell)
1 Tsp of raw maca powder
1 Tsp of unhulled tahini
1 Tsp of sprouted crunchy buckwheat (optional)
1 Tsp of cacao nibs
dash of cinnamon
few drops of stevia to taste
Get yourself a pretty cup or bowl and mix all these ingredients together. Keep stirring well so that all the chia seeds get mixed around and the tahini and stevia gets evenly distributed throughout.
Set in the fridge for at least 10 minutes. If it needs more liquid simply add more almond milk and stir again. This is a great recipe to make up the night before and can be a very sustainable breakfast on the go.
Before serving you can add some more cacao nibs, buckwheat cinnamon & tahini purely to make it look pretty. Grab a spoon and enjoy. //
My son loves his chia seeds with grated apple and raw honey or blueberries and mango. He sometimes takes it to kindergarten for his lunch. Any chia cereal combination makes a great portable snack.
I hope you enjoy making this fast simple and nutrient dense snack just as much as I do. //