Instant Pot Lemon Quinoa (South Indian Style)

Here’s a fun take on the traditional south Indian Lemon Rice- this Lemon Quinoa has the same flavors as the rice but is more wholesome and protein-packed!

white bowl with yellow color quinoa topped with peanuts, with a wedge of lemon in the background along with a bowl of peanuts

Quinoa is something I have grown to like over the years. At first, I wasn’t a fan but then I developed the palate for it and now I enjoy it in various forms.

Sarvesh on the other hand is still not a fan. However, now he does eat it when I mix -in some flavors with the quinoa.

Like this Mexican Quinoa , Quinoa Khichdi or this Lemon Quinoa.

This Lemon Quinoa is another way in which I enjoy quinoa these days! It’s requires few ingredients and is easy to make in the Instant Pot.

Ever since I have had my IP, I have never really cooked quinoa on stove-top.

South Indian style Lemon Quinoa

✔ is flavored with curry leaves, ginger, lemon juice and lots of peanuts!

✔ is vegan and gluten-free.

✔ can be eaten for breakfast or lunch.

✔ served at room temperature making it ideal for lunch boxes or picnics.

I flavor this quinoa exactly in the same way that I make my lemon rice.

Swapping rice with quinoa makes the dish protein packed and wholesome.

While testing this recipe, I didn’t want quinoa to be mushy at all. So, I first tested this recipe with 1 cup quinoa to 1.25 cups (10 oz) water.

The resulting quinoa was perfect with each grain separate. However, as it cooled down, it became slightly on the drier side.

So, next time I added 1.5 cups water (12 oz) and it turned out just perfect. When I opened the lid, the grains looked stuck together. But as it cooled down, it became perfect and not mushy at all.

I highly recommend going with 1.5 cups since it will stay better that way even the next day.

Serving Suggestions

This lemon quinoa is best served at room temperature. I usually eat it with pickle on the side. You can also eat it with a chutney.

This is one of those recipes that you can make in literally no time, the prep time is only like 5 minutes, the pressure cooker does most of the work here.

If you are looking for new ways to flavor quinoa, then give this recipe a try. It’s easy, wholesome and the lemon flavor makes it perfect for summer!

 

Method

1- Rinse the quinoa using a strainer for a minute. This is important and helps remove the bitterness. Set it aside.

2- Press the saute button on the Instant Pot. Once the pot is hot, add the oil and then add the mustard seeds.

Let the seeds pop, and then add the chana dal and urad dal. Cook for 30 seconds or so until the dal starts changing color.

3- Add the hing and then the green chili, chopped ginger and curry leaves. Cook for 30 seconds or so. Then add the rinsed quinoa to the pot.

4- Add the turmeric and salt. Toss to combine.

step by step picture collage of making lemon quinoa in the instant pot

5- Add water and stir.

6- Close the pot with the lid. Press the manual or pressure cook button and cook on high pressure for 2 minutes with the pressure valve in the sealing position. Let the pressure release naturally.

7- Open the pot and fluff the quinoa with a fork. Let it cool down and then add the lemon juice.

8- Stir in the roasted peanuts.

step by step picture collage of making lemon quinoa in the instant pot

Serve south Indian Lemon Quinoa at room temperature with pickle on the side.

white bowl with yellow color quinoa topped with peanuts, with a wedge of lemon in the background along with a bowl of peanuts

If you’ve tried this Instant Pot Lemon Quinoa Recipe then don’t forget to rate the recipe! You can also follow me on FacebookInstagram to see what’s latest in my kitchen!

Instant Pot Lemon Quinoa

white bowl with yellow color quinoa topped with peanuts, with a wedge of lemon in the background along with a bowl of peanuts
Manali
South Indian style Lemon Quinoa flavored with ginger, mustard seeds, curry leaves and cooked in the Instant Pot. Vegan and gluten-free.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Indian
Servings 3
Calories 314 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 tablespoon oil 15 ml, I used avocado oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon black mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon chana dal
  • 1 teaspoon urad dal dhuli
  • 1/8 teaspoon hing
  • 1 green chili sliced
  • 1.5 teaspoon chopped ginger
  • 10-12 curry leaves
  • 1 cup quinoa 185 grams
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1.5 cups water 12 oz
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice 30 ml
  • 2 tablespoons peanuts roasted

Instructions
 

  • Rinse the quinoa using a strainer for a minute. This is important and helps remove the bitterness. Set it aside.
    quinoa being rinsed in a strainer
  • Press the saute button on the Instant Pot. Once the pot is hot, add the oil and then add the mustard seeds.
    Let the seeds pop, and then add the chana dal and urad dal. Cook for 30 seconds or so until the dal starts changing color.
    steel pot with oil, mustard seeds
  • Add the hing and then the green chili, chopped ginger and curry leaves. Cook for 30 seconds or so. Then add the rinsed quinoa to the pot.
    steel pot with uncooked quinoa, curry leaves
  • Add the turmeric and salt. Toss to combine, then add water and stir.
    steel pot with quinoa, water, turmeric and salt
  • Close the pot with the lid. Press the manual or pressure cook button and cook on high pressure for 2 minutes with the pressure valve in the sealing position. Let the pressure release naturally.
    instant pot displaying 2 minute sign
  • Open the pot and fluff the quinoa with a fork. Let it cool down and then add the lemon juice.
    a tablespoon of lemon juice being added to a pot pf quinoa
  • Stir in the roasted peanuts. Serve south Indian Lemon Quinoa at room temperature with pickle on the side.
    yellow color quinoa in a steel pot topped with roasted peanuts

Stove-top Instructions

  • Cook quinoa according to instructions on the package on stove-top. Fluff it and then let it cool down. Once cooled transfer it to a large bowl. Add salt, lemon juice and mix.
  • To a small pan on medium heat, add oil. Once the oil is hot, add the mustard seeds and let them pop, and then add the chana dal and urad dal. Cook for 30 seconds or so until the dal starts changing color. Add the green chili, ginger and saute for few seconds until ginger starts changing color. Add the curry leaves, stir and then add the hing and turmeric, stir and remove pan from heat. Transfer the tempering to the cooled quinoa and mix the seasoning well with the quinoa. Add roasted peanuts and mix. Serve lemon quinoa with pickle.

Notes

  1. The quinoa might look a little mushy when you open the pot. Fluff it with a fork and let it cool down. The grains will become separate as it cools down and won't be mushy at all.

Nutrition

Calories: 314kcalCarbohydrates: 42gProtein: 11gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 449mgPotassium: 400mgFiber: 6gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 126IUVitamin C: 72mgCalcium: 51mgIron: 3mg
Keyword lemon quinoa
Tried this recipe?Mention @cookwithmanali or tag #cookwithmanali!

One thought on “Instant Pot Lemon Quinoa (South Indian Style)

  1. 5 stars
    Hi Manuli,

    I made this dish today and it is so good. Thanks for posting it. Will make it again and again.
    Alonna

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