Knowing how to cook Quinoa in a Rice Cooker is very desirable but first understand what Quinoa is. Natural quinoa seeds have a coating of bitter-tasting chemicals called saponins, which will make their seeds less-palatable to birds and other seed-eaters. These saponins are mildly toxic by nature. For quinoa to be made edible, it is required to be rinsed to get rid of the saponin layer.
You can do this easily by soaking for a few hours, then changing the water and soaking again. Another way is to rinse quinoa in running water for a few minutes, by using a sieve.
Now most quinoa which I am aware of and that is easily available in the US market is already washed and processed before it is packed and sold. However, for those who have a pack that is not rinsed (friends visiting from Bolivia!), my five step guide is just what you need. This applies to whether you are trying to find out how to cook quinoa in a rice cooker or on a stove in a normal saucepan.
Rinsing quinoa seeds:
1. Take a sizable bowl and pour the pack of quinoa seeds into it.
2. Now fill it up with cold water simply enough to soak the seeds as well as some extra. Rub the seeds with the help of your palms for a minute or so. This helps in releasing the saponins.
3. Take a fine mesh strainer and pour the quinoa and the soaked water from the strainer.
4. After you’ve drained the soaked water maintain strainer with quinoa under running water for a minute or two. Do that till the water runs clean and without any soapy film.
5. You may now use this quinoa to ready a meal. The excess quantity could be just air dried by spreading it on a sheet of kitchen towel and allow it to dry. This air dried rinsed quinoa could be kept in an air tight container and used in a while.
How to Cook Quinoa in a Rice Cooker
Quinoa is a good resource for balanced vegetable protein making it important for vegans and vegetarian. It packs a nutty nutritional punch by containing nine kinds of amino acids.
Cooking quinoa is a simple task. However to really make it even quicker and simpler, I have already been tinkering with cooking quinoa in a rice cooker.
Post a couple of mishaps because of the chef’s indiscretion, I am now fairly at ease with this method of cooking and you may try the same in your kitchen.
It took me about 20 minutes to get this ready and the below serves 3-5 persons.
What you need:
1. One cup pre rinsed quinoa
2. Two cups of vegetable / chicken stock or plain water
3. One tsp salt
Place quinoa in the rice cooker and add stock/water to it.
Start your rice cooker and press the ‘Rice’ button.
Depending on the make and model of the rice cooker you use, you may possibly not find the ‘Rice’ Button. In the event you don’t see that button on your cooker, just cover the lid and turn it on.
Wait for 15 minutes or, until the quinoa grains are translucent and the outer germ separates from grain.
Your hot and fluffy quinoa is ready to be used.
If you don’t find pre rinsed quinoa (which is a rare possibility) use my tips to rinse quinoa.