500 Best Quinoa Recipes Review (and Giveaway)

October 16, 2012


If you are gluten-intolerant or simply wanting to know how to make just about anything with quinoa, then you want to check out 500 Best Quinoa Recipes.  This book covers it all.

In case you are not familiar with this super-food, quinoa is a gluten-free grain that is high in protein, plus it contains all of the essential amino acids.  Because quinoa is an excellent source of magnesium, folate, phosphorus, iron and fibre, it’s also an ideal ingredient for vegans, vegetarians and flexitarians.  And because it is gluten-free, it is like gold for anyone who is gluten intolerant.

In addition to the health benefits of quinoa, this grain has a great texture and a nutty flavour, and it comes in many forms, as seeds, flakes and flour, lending itself to a myriad of recipes.

Written by veteran cookbook writer Camilla V. Saulsbury and published by Robert Rose, 500 Best Quinoa Recipes covers everything from the essentials about quinoa, to dozens of recipes for every course, and many converted recipes for those who are looking for a gluten-free version of old favourites.

I had the pleasure of meeting Camilla in Toronto recently during her book tour.  If the adage ‘you are what you eat’ is true, then after meeting Camilla, you want to live off her books.  Full of energy that springs from a combination of her healthy diet and commitment to fitness as a fitness instructor and personal trainer, Camilla brings the credentials.

In the Spring, I reviewed another fabulous title by the same author, 5 Easy Steps to Healthy Cooking, which has become one of my favourite books of all time.  Fabulous, healthy recipes that are easy to follow.

Camilla has a dozen published books under her belt, and 500 Best Quinoa Recipes is her sixth title with Robert Rose.  And it is evident why this partnership works.  Robert Rose is known for offering high-value cookbooks, usually with an established number of recipes in the title, in a very specific area, so that you know what you’re getting for your money.  And Camilla does her research.

If you are new to quinoa, or even if you’re already familiar with it, the introduction alone has five pages dedicated to Quinoa 101 where she covers everything from cooking yields (so when a recipe calls for 3 cups of cooked quinoa, you know how much uncooked quinoa you need in advance), to various ways to cook quinoa, how to make quinoa flour (a very cool tip) and even a dead-easy method of cooking quinoa overnight in a thermos that a student could even do in a dorm.



Often books that focus on specific health concerns are written by authors who have an intolerance themselves.  But since Camilla has written everything from cake and muffin cookbooks (that do not adhere to specific dietary needs) to vegan muffins to gluten free muffins, plus 5 Healthy Steps, which focuses on healthy foods, but is not dedicated to a specific area, I was curious to know how she got came to write 500 Best Quinoa Recipes, which is 100% gluten-free.

Camilla’s son once had gluten intolerance, so she started creating recipes specifically for him.  While her son eventually outgrew the problem, Camilla continued to find her self interested in creating cookbooks for the many people who are faced with these health issues.

That’s what I love about 500 Best Quinoa Recipes, and it’s what I love about Camilla, for that matter.  She really knows her stuff.  Ask her anything about quinoa, and she has an answer for you.  How to buy it, prepare it, and how to substitute with it.

Quinoa is not just for those who are gluten free.  My husband and I are enjoying trying various quinoa recipes in our commitment to eating more vegetarian meals each week.  I made Black Bean Quinoa Chipotle Chili, which was not only fast and easy, but it had lots of great texture, yet, at the same time was incredibly light, unlike a typical meat-based chili, which can be quite heavy.  And it freezes very well.

Another fabulous recipe from the book, and one that Camilla admitted that she is partial to, is her Warm Butternut Squash Salad with Crispy Chickpeas.  Full of complex flavours and a great combination of textures from quinoa, roasted butternut squash and chickpeas and chewy dried cranberries, it makes a wonderful main course salad.

And I have fallen head over heals for the Peanut Butter and Quinoa Granola.  Wow.  If you’re looking for a great hostess gift during the holidays, without breaking the bank, make a batch of this granola, and you will definitely get invited back.

This week, courtesy of Robert Rose, I am featuring a giveaway for this fabulous book.  Today I am sharing the Black Bean Quinoa Chipotle Chili recipe, with more recipes to come throughout the week.

Here are the details for this week’s giveaway for 500 Best Quinoa Recipes.  There will be multiple opportunities to be entered in the draw this week (up to three chances in total).

There will be additional posts with recipes from 500 Best Quinoa Recipes this week, including this week’s posts featuring Warm Butternut Squash Salad with Roasted Chickpeas and Peanut Butter and Quinoa Granola.  Details with additional opportunities to enter the draw will be included in those posts.

Here’s the fine print:

  1. Open to residents of U.S. and Canada.
  2. To enter in today’s post, simply answer in the comments section:  Have you ever tried quinoa?  If so, what is your favourite way to use it?
  3. When entering your comment, please ensure that you include your full email address so that if you win, you can be contacted.  You can use your first name only in the comments section, and rest assured, your email information will never be shared.
  4. The first name drawn will be contacted by email and required to respond within 24 hours with your mailing address.  Failure to respond within this time frame will disqualify the entry and the next name drawn will be contacted.
  5. Contest closes on Sunday, October 21st at 6 pm EST.
  6. All qualified entries will be included in the draw from this week’s posts, and the winning name will be drawn using Random.org. 
Details on 500 Best Quinoa Recipes:
ISBN-EAN:  9780778804147
Price (USD):  27.95
Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 512
Published Date: Oct 2012

Black Bean Quinoa Chipotle Chili

Serving Size: 8

No one will ask, “Where’s the beef?” when sampling this incredibly delicious vegetarian dish. Simmering hearty black beans and quinoa with onions, garlic, herbs and spices creates a wonderfully complex chili that’s finished with fresh lime and topped off with tangy yogurt and an assortment of fresh flourishes.

Excerpted from 500 Best Quinoa Recipes by Camilla V. Saulsbury © 2012 Robert Rose Inc. www.robertrose.ca Photos by Colin Erricson. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

Tip If using the larger 19-oz (540 mL) cans of beans, you may want to add up to 1?2 cup (125 mL) vegetable broth or water to thin the chili.

Storage Tip Store the cooled chili in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days or in the freezer for up to 6 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator or in the microwave using the Defrost function. Warm chili in a medium saucepan over medium?low heat.


  • 2 tsp vegetable oil 10 mL
  • 2 cups chopped onions 500 mL
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced 4
  • 3 tbsp chili powder 45 mL
  • 11?2 tbsp ground cumin 22 mL
  • 2 tsp dried oregano 10 mL
  • 11?2 tsp chipotle chile powder 7 mL
  • 3 cans (each 14 to 19 oz/398 to 540 mL) 3
  • black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed 250 mL
  • 1 can (28 oz/796 mL) crushed tomatoes 1
  • 3 cups ready-to-use reduced-sodium vegetable 750 mL
  • or chicken broth (GF, if needed)
  • 1 tbsp finely grated lime zest 15 mL
  • 1?4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice 60 mL
  • Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt 250 mL
  • Suggested Accompaniments
  • Fresh cilantro leaves
  • Chopped green onions
  • Chopped radishes
  • Crumbled queso fresco


  1. In a large pot, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook, stirring, for 6 to 8 minutes or until softened.
  2. Add garlic, chili powder, cumin, oregano and chipotle chile powder; cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
  3. In a small bowl, coarsely mash one-third of the beans with a potato masher or fork.
  4. Stir mashed beans, whole beans, quinoa, tomatoes and broth into the pot.
  5. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring often, for about 30 minutes to blend the flavors.
  6. Stir in lime zest and lime juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  7. Serve topped with yogurt and any of the suggested accompaniments, as desired.

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Leave a Comment

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Ann October 16, 2012 at 1:18 pm

Love beans of any kind. Nice change without the meat as well.


Linda October 16, 2012 at 1:34 pm

I recently tried making Quinoa & Pumpkin muffins – turned out a little bland – could have used a better recipe! LOL
I usually eat it as a salad with dried cranberries, almonds, green onion…


Claire Nolan October 16, 2012 at 2:08 pm

I love quinoa in stuffed peppers but generally use it in place of rice. I also love quinoa flakes instead of oatmeal for breakfast!


One Cook, Two Kitchens October 18, 2012 at 11:36 am

Camilla, the author, is a big fan of using quinoa flakes. That’s a new version of quinoa for me – and such a great alternative for those who need a gluten-free alternative to oats.


Sandra October 16, 2012 at 7:53 pm

I have used quinoa as a side dish, instead of rice. I really liked it!


Brenda October 17, 2012 at 12:24 am

I just tried quinoa for the first time on Sunday as a salad with kale, cranberries, feta and walnuts. It was yummy!


Krista October 17, 2012 at 4:46 pm

Quinoa is a staple in my kitchen. I have used it for everything from hot breakfast cereal to savoury sides and salads. What did I do before I discovered this fantastic little seed?


One Cook, Two Kitchens October 18, 2012 at 11:32 am

You’re a fellow quinoa lover – that’s great, Krista! My latest quinoa addiction is enjoying it toasted!


Aileen October 17, 2012 at 6:17 pm

I love cooking quinoa with chicken broth and using as a healthy side dish instead of rice. It also makes a tasty replacement for bulgher wheat in tabbouleh.


One Cook, Two Kitchens October 18, 2012 at 11:34 am

Actually, when I interviewed the author of this book, Camilla Saulsbury, we talked about using quinoa in tabbouleh…it works so well!


Teresa October 18, 2012 at 12:39 pm

My first quinoa was a Trader Joe’s mango chicken salad with red quinoa. I am hoping to stumble across this recipe somewhere. So Yummy! I make a chickpea with avocado quinoa salad most frequently.


Ashley October 18, 2012 at 4:49 pm

I love making a quinoa salad! I will have to try quinoa flour next time I bake


LoAn Thanh October 20, 2012 at 7:26 am

Just bought a package of quinoa because you mentioned it was healthy. Followed package instructions to boil and it was a delightful taste that’s so different to the taste buds. And it does have a nutty taste.


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