Quinoa not only cooks faster than other grains such as rice and couscous, it is chock full of essential nutrients

Quinoa is just as comfortable on the breakfast table as it is in your lunch box and the dinner table!

Although this question may seem relatively straightforward, the answer is actually slightly more complicated.

In its pure form, quinoa is a gluten free grain. However, many quinoa based products contain high enough levels of gluten that those who suffer from celiac or are gluten intolerant may experience a reaction. In general, however, quinoa is considered to be safe for those following a gluten free diet.

What is Quinoa?

Until you went gluten free, you may not have even heard of quinoa! This seed, however, has been dated back to at least 3000 BC where it was first consumed by the Incas in South America. In recent years, even amongst the non gluten free crowd, quinoa has gained significant popularity. In fact, The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations even dubbed this year the official year of quinoa.

Normally referred to as an ancient whole grain, quinoa is actually a type of seed produced from Goosefoot plants. In fact, quinoa is more closely relatively to vegetable species such as beets, spinach, and tumbleweed than other cereal grains.

Now that you have been introduced to this pseudo grain, what exactly can you do with quinoa?

Many delicious and flavorful quinoa dishes are quick and simple to whip up. And, it’s a good thing because eating a balanced diet while choosing a gluten free lifestyle requires you to pay attention to your nutrient intake. Quinoa helps you with that!

Quinoa not only cooks faster than other grains such as rice and couscous, it is chock full of essential nutrients. Unlike many other similar grain type products, in addition to containing high levels of many important vitamins and minerals, this superfood is rich in protein and iron making quinoa both filling and satisfying.

Other recent studies have even indicated that quinoa may contain anti-inflammatory benefits. Studies done using animals have shown that eating quinoa lowers your bad cholesterol and even increases levels of good cholesterol.

There are many delicious ways to start incorporating this wonder food into your gluten free menu.

Quinoa based salads are both nutritious and healthy…swap out the barley for quinoa in this one…

You can easily add some additional protein and fiber to the breakfast table…