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Easy Quinoa Taco Dip

Updated on August 2, 2012
Taco dip, filling or side dish using quinoa instead of Spanish rice
Taco dip, filling or side dish using quinoa instead of Spanish rice
Cast your vote for Quinoa taco dip

Taco dip appetizer, filling or side dish? It's your choice!

I was at my nephew's birthday party recently and my sister had her taco dip made. I talked to her about what she put into it and she said it was never the same. The base of black beans and Spanish rice always is the same though, and I started to wonder if I could replace the rice with quinoa. I know it is used the same as rice in some dishes, so I thought I would try it. I put this taco dip together today for a midday snack for the family. It was so easy, yummy and filling that I don't even think I will be eating dinner at all. I am still not even a bit hungry.

Quinoa is really easy to make, just cook two cups of water to one cup quinoa for 15 minutes. I added some cumin, paprika and garlic salt to the quinoa as it was cooking to add flavor. The beautiful thing about quinoa is that it will take on whatever flavor you add to it. All you have to do is bring it to a rapid boil, then reduce the heat and simmer with a lid while the quinoa absorbs the water. You will notice small "hairs" coming off each quinoa seed and that is how it is supposed to look. It will be tender after about 15 minutes, the quinoa absorbed most of the water, but I drained off the excess so it would not make the dip runny.

To make the dip, grab a large mixing bowl and all the ingredients. I mix my taco seasoning into the sour cream before adding it to the mixture to make sure it is evenly distributed. Then add all the ingredients together and serve. I served it with tortillas and nachos, it is really a crowd pleasing and easy appetizer. The quinoa adds an additional burst of nutrition to the taco dip. It is more closely related to beets than to grains, so I will say that this is a healthier version of taco dip than with Spanish rice.

cooked quinoa, notice the "hairs"
cooked quinoa, notice the "hairs" | Source
bean, cheese and sour cream mixture before adding quinoa - this is also good for dipping tortilla chips into and I am guilty of  doing this myself
bean, cheese and sour cream mixture before adding quinoa - this is also good for dipping tortilla chips into and I am guilty of doing this myself | Source
Mix the cooked quinoa in with the bean mixture, serve with tortilla chips.
Mix the cooked quinoa in with the bean mixture, serve with tortilla chips. | Source
I also used the dip as a taco filling and a side dish
I also used the dip as a taco filling and a side dish | Source

Cook Time

Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 15 min
Ready in: 30 min
Yields: serves 6 people as an appetizer dip or side

Ingredients

  • 1 14 oz can Black beans, drained
  • 8 oz sour cream
  • 1 packet taco seasoning
  • 8 oz shredded cheddar cheese
  • 3/4 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 tsp sour cream, available for garnish
  • 1 tsp salsa, available for garnish

Directions

  1. Measure 3/4 cup dry quinoa, put in saucepan.
  2. Measure 1 1/2 cups water and add to quinoa, bring to a rapid boil.
  3. Reduce heat, cover and simmer the quinoa for 15 minutes. I added about a 1/2 tsp garlic salt, 1/2 tsp paprika and 1/2 tsp cumin to the quinoa for flavor. The quinoa will absorb most of the water, but if it seems like there is still too much, drain it out.
  4. Mix the taco seasoning (1 packet) into the sour cream.
  5. Drain the beans, add them to the bowl, mix in the sour cream blend and cheddar cheese.
  6. Once the quinoa is done and cooled for a short time you can add it to the bean/cheese mixture.
  7. Chill the dip for a short time, or eat it right away (that's what I did). I actually warmed a small amount up in a flour tortilla and added salsa and sour cream to it. It was delicious! I hope you enjoy this taco dip as much as my family does!

Have you ever cooked with quinoa before?

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    • amberld profile image
      Author

      Amber Dahnke 5 years ago from New Glarus, WI

      I must admit, this taco dip is even better the second day. I rolled it up in a flour tortilla with more cheese for lunch and it would also work good in quesadillas or enchiladas.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      I will have to try this one soon. I have made quinoa dishes before but never as daring as this. Thanks for sharing.

    • amberld profile image
      Author

      Amber Dahnke 5 years ago from New Glarus, WI

      Yes, I highly recommend this recipe! I am going to try many different quinoa instead of rice substitutions coming up. If they work out well, I will write a hub about the recipe. I am so excited this turned out so great. I hope you enjoy it, too! I just found out that quinoa is a superfood, high in magnesium and recommended for people who suffer from migraines.

    • amberld profile image
      Author

      Amber Dahnke 4 years ago from New Glarus, WI

      Thank you! I love this hot or cold and just out of the bowl in the fridge sometimes. Hope you enjoy it, too!

    • Angela Brummer profile image

      Angela Brummer 4 years ago from Lincoln, Nebraska

      I have to try this it looks amazing!

    • amberld profile image
      Author

      Amber Dahnke 4 years ago from New Glarus, WI

      It is very good, the flavors combine even better overnight so it's great on the second day, too! Hope you enjoy it!

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