Sunday, April 17, 2011

Quinoa Corn Chowder


If you tried my salsa verde, then you probably have some cilantro left over. Fret not. Cilantro lovers, you are in the right place. Soup, quinoa, corn, and chowder lovers, you're going to want to stick around too. 

Its April. In the U.P. This means that both cross-country skiing and stand up paddle boarding are realistic possibilities on any given day... sometimes on the same day. Today, its snowing.... and snow means soup in my world. A big ole pot of it that will make my whole house smell warm and cozy, like a blend of love and wood fire (snow also means firing up the wood stove in my world too). I'm making quinoa corn chowder.

I hope by now you have caught the quinoa (pronounced keen-wha) craze. Its been around long enough (5,000 years to be exact) to have made its debut in most mainstream grocery stores. If you haven't had it yet, today is the day. Quinoa is not a grain (on a side note, corn IS a grain). Technically, its a seed from a plant related to the spinach family. Technically, its a superfood. Quinoa is full of phytonutrients and anti-oxidants. My favorite quinoa fact is that its a complete protein, meaning it contains all 9 essential amino acids required by the body to build muscle. Um, awesome.
 I love you, quinoa! 

 Quinoa Corn Chowder 
1/2 cup quinoa (soaked and rinsed)
1/2 teas cumin seeds
1/2 teas mustard seeds

Toast quinoa, cumin seed, and mustard seed in a dry pot over medium-high heat for about 3-4 minutes. You'll know its done when the seeds start to 'pop' and the quinoa starts to turn gold. Plus, its going to smell wonderfully fragrant. Remove from the pan, and hang on to them until later.

Heat coconut oil in the pot, and add:
2 cups frozen corn
1 large leek, chopped
3 medium red potatoes with skins, chopped
Saute for about 5 minutes

4 cups broth
2 cups non-dairy milk (I used cashew. For the love of yourself, please DO NOT USE SOY MILK. Thank you)
Bring to a boil. Add toasted quinoa/seed mixture. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for about 10 minutes. 

1 chopped bell pepper

Simmer for another 5 minutes, or until both the quinoa and potatoes are done. 

3-4 Tbsp chopped cilantro. 
(ahhhhhhh, best food scent ever. Toasted cumin seeds AND cilantro in the same bite. Yes please!) 

We put a little sriracha on ours.

What's your go-to comfort food on a wet, snowy Spring day? Oh, is the UP the only place that has snowy Spring days? C'moooooon Mother Nature, we're waiting for you!

This recipe is featured in Seasonal Sundays at Real Sustenance. 


  1. I have everything but sub cashew milk for almond...think that will work?

  2. Yes, I think almond milk would be fine! Hope you're enjoying your sunshine, we just got blasted by snow.

  3. Oh my goodness Mercedes, you're rockin' my world with this blog. Good job!

  4. Made this tonight for dinner - delicious! Thank you for the excellent recipe!

  5. Yay Tammi, I'm glad you liked it!

  6. Corn chowder has been one of my favorite things since I was a little kid and my mom would make it from time to time. I'm like an addict for the stuff. Adding quinoa is such a great idea.