Sauteed Winter Vegetables with Crispy Quinoa

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Crispy quinoa adds texture and flavor to winter vegetables in this easy weeknight meal.
Whenever I make rice or quinoa for a dish, I almost always cook extra. There are so many ways you can reuse these. And any time I can cut a step from a weeknight dinner, I’m doing it.
crispy quinoa
Quinoa, in particular, is a favorite of mine. It goes great in grain bowls, salads, and you can even eat it like oatmeal for breakfast. But one of my favorite ways to use leftover quinoa is to cook it in a little bit of oil until it browns and crisps. It adds a crispy texture, a toasty flavor, and makes things like sautéed vegetables a bit more interesting. Crispy quinoa is one of my favorite additions.
For the veggies, I used cabbage, mushrooms, and onions, with a bit of balsamic vinegar. To add another textural element, I added some dried cranberries that I had leftover from another recipe, and some goat cheese at the end for creaminess.
While you may be tempted to cook the quinoa before you crisp it up, don’t. Kind of like fried rice, the quinoa is best when it’s been cooked and cooled ahead of time. I’ve done it both ways, and I can tell you that doing it beforehand is better. So just make a plan for two meals with quinoa and cook up enough for this recipe. It will last a couple days in the fridge, so you don’t have to eat quinoa two days in a row.
You can also use this for whatever veggies you like or add crisp up your quinoa and then add it to a grain bowl or salad. Don’t cook it too long though — you don’t want it hard, just a bit crisp at the bite.
crispy quinoa

Sautéed Winter Vegetables with Crispy Quinoa

Crispy quinoa adds texture and flavor to flavorful winter vegetables in this easy weeknight meal.
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Prep Time 20 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 422 kcal



  • 3 tablespoons olive or avocado oil divided
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa cooled
  • 1 onion sliced
  • 4 cups shredded cabbage
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms any variety
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 ounces crumbled goat cheese
  • Sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste


  • In a large skillet, heat half the oil over medium high heat.
  • Add the quinoa to the pan and spread evenly. Don’t pile it up — you may have to cook in batches depending on how big your pan is.
  • Cook the quinoa for about 3 minutes, stir, and continue cooking until it is lightly browned. Turn off heat and transfer to plates or bowls for serving.
  • Wipe out the pan and add the remaining oil over medium high heat. Add the onions, mushrooms, and cabbage and cook until softened. Add the Italian seasoning, and vinegar. Stir and add to your quinoa.
  • Top with cranberries and goat cheese and serve.


Storing leftovers: Leftovers can be stored in the fridge, but the quinoa may soften up, so it’s best to crisp the quinoa when ready to serve.
Pairs well with: Japanese Milk Bread Rolls, Charred Scallion Salt, Roasted Garlic Lemon Yogurt


Calories: 422kcalCarbohydrates: 52gProtein: 5gFat: 23gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 15gSodium: 12mgPotassium: 273mgFiber: 6gSugar: 24gVitamin A: 23IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 50mgIron: 2mg
Nutrition information is only an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. View full nutrition disclousre.
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