Quinoa and Bean Pilaf

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 40 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Cook: 20 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
  • Nutrition Info
Save Recipe


2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 bell peppers (1 red, 1 green), cut into 1/2-inch pieces

3 scallions, sliced (white and green parts separated)

3 scallions, sliced (white and green parts separated) 

2 stalks celery, diced

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

2 tablespoons tomato paste

Pinch of cayenne pepper

Kosher salt

1 cup quinoa

2 15-ounce cans black and/or kidney beans, drained and rinsed

4 cups baby spinach (about 3 ounces)

1/2 cup shredded cheddar or pepper jack cheese

Hot sauce, for serving (optional)


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bell peppers, scallion whites and celery and cook, stirring, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, tomato paste, cayenne and 1/2 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring often, until the tomato paste turns brick red, about 2 minutes. Stir in the quinoa, then add 2 cups water and the beans. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring often, until most of the water is absorbed and the quinoa is cooked through, about 15 minutes. Add up to 1/4 cup more water if necessary. 
  2. Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the spinach until just wilted. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon salt and half each of the scallion greens and cheese. Divide among bowls and sprinkle with the remaining scallion greens and cheese. Serve with hot sauce. 

Quinoa with Chicken and Lentils

Charcoal Grilled Chicken Sinaloa-Style with Grilled Corn, Black Bean and Quinoa Relish

Grilled Scallops with Orange-Scented Quinoa

Black Bean and Quinoa Falafel