Creamy Quinoa Primavera

Ron and I have really been loving quinoa these days and when I saw Elly's recipe for Creamy Quinoa Primavera I knew I needed to give it a try. I made this along side grilled chicken for Mother's Day and my entire family absolutely loved this dish. The flavors of the fresh veggies are wonderful and go well with the creaminess of the dish. I honestly can't wait to make this one again! Maybe next time I will add it a little asparagus or zucchini and sub in a little white wine.... A big plus with this dish is that it is very versatile. I think that the fresh basil is amazing (I added a little extra) in this dish and would not recommend subbing in dried basil. This is a fantastic side dish that will go well with any summer time entree. Thanks Elly!


1 1/2 cups uncooked quinoa
1 Tbl butter
1 medium carrot, peeled and diced
1 celery rib, diced
1 small red bell pepper, diced
2 cups mushrooms, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup frozen peas
3 oz reduced fat cream cheese, softened
2 Tbl chopped fresh basil
3 Tbl grated Romano cheese
Salt and Pepper, to taste


Place quinoa in mesh strainer and rinse for about 2 minutes. Set aside.

In a medium skillet or large saucepan, melt the butter. Add the mushrooms and cook until juices have been released. Stir in the carrots, celery, and bell pepper and cook for just 1-2 minutes minutes; vegetables will still be crisp. Add the garlic and quinoa, stirring for about one minute before adding the broth. Bring the broth to a boil; cover with a lid and then reduce to a simmer. Simmer until quinoa is cooked and broth is almost entirely absorbed, about 15 minutes.

Add the peas, stirring to warm through. Remove from the heat and stir in the cream cheese, until mixed throughout. Add the basil and Romano, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Top with additional Romano, if desired.

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