Cherry Basil Quinoa

Cherry Basil Quinoa

One cherry recipe and now another; if you can’t tell I bought a couple pounds of cherries last weekend and had to find ways to eat them. Now that they’re gone, I’m tempted to get more and see what comes out of it.

The great thing about fruits in the Summer is that you don’t really need to do anything to them. I thought about roasting the cherries before adding them in with quinoa(which you certainly can do), but the light and tangy flavors of fresh cherries mixed with herbs and seasoning didn’t need anything more.


Quinoa’s one of my favorite grains and a pantry-staple in my house. If you’re out of quinoa and still want to try this, you could use couscous or a short-grain rice like Arborio. You could roast the cherries before mixing them in for a different flavor, but when they’re this fresh I think they’re even better as is.

Cherry Basil Quinoa

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes

Ingredients(Makes 4-6 servings):

  • 1 1/2 cups dry quinoa, washed and rinsed
  • 3 cups water*
  • 3/4 cup pitted and halved cherries
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Small handful of basil, roughly chopped
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

*This is the average amount of water I use for cooking quinoa. If you have a different method or the brand you use recommends more or less, by all means you can adjust this.

Cherry Basil Quinoa Yield


  1. Bring the quinoa and water to a boil in a pot and put on the lid.
  2. Turn the burner off and leave the quinoa undisturbed for 15-20 minutes until the water is entirely absorbed.
  3. Toss in the cherries, olive oil, basil, salt, and pepper and mix. Transfer from a pot to a serving dish.
  4. Serve hot or cold. Keep leftovers in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.

Cherry Basil Quinoa Plated

Who knew simple could be so good? You can add some beans into the mix or add crushed pistachios or almonds on top to make this more of an entrée.

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4 Responses to Cherry Basil Quinoa
  1. Christa @ Edible Balance
    July 30, 2012 | 10:58 am

    gorgeous looking salad! perfect for lunches on hot summer days… I’ve been seeing cherry and basil together a lot, such a great combination especially with pistachios!

  2. Diane, A Broad
    July 30, 2012 | 9:36 pm

    I always have a few cups of cooked quinoa in my fridge, and I love finding new things to mix with it. This sounds fantastic, thanks!

  3. whaleshark
    July 31, 2012 | 3:16 am

    I will add some almonds to make this perfect. This is a fun Summery dish to use up that quinoa in your pantry.Thanks!

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