Mexican Fried Quinoa

Mexican Fried Quinoa ~ a different take on a great dish to use your leftovers 

Mexican Fried Quinoa

It’s safe to say that leftovers are the best thing to happen to my fridge during a busy week.

When you’re too busy to cook, having leftovers can save you from ordering take out or picking up fast food.

Something that’s really helpful is to make extra of things I can use later in the week. For example, I always double the amount of quinoa or brown rice that I make. Fried rice is the best for cleaning out your fridge. Seriously, just throw all the veggies in your fridge in the skillet and call it a day.

Mexican Fried Quinoa

This Mexican Fried Quinoa is just like fried rice except you use quinoa instead of rice (obviously).

Fried rice is usually thought of as a typical Asian dish, but when you make fried rice almost weekly, you gotta change things up. Plus, I make tacos at least twice a month, so I usually have leftover taco meat in the fridge.

However, you can totally use uncooked ground beef or turkey for this Mexican Fried Quinoa. Just use about 10 ounces uncooked ground meat for this dish. Or if you want to make it vegetarian, add in another can of beans.

Mexican Fried Quinoa

Basically, you just sauté some veggies, stir in spices, add in the quinoa, and finish by adding in your cooked meat until everything is hot & delicious! You can top it with whatever makes you happy. I’m partial to avocados, cheese, and cilantro. But I just really love toppings 🙂

Mexican Fried Quinoa

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 6 cups

Serving Size: 1 1/2 cups

Mexican Fried Quinoa

Mexican Fried Quinoa ~ a different take on a great dish to use your leftovers


  • 1 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 2 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup diced green onion
  • 3 cups cooked quinoa
  • 2 TBSP apple cider vinegar
  • 2 cups cooked ground beef or turkey meat
  • sliced avocados, grated cheese, and/or chopped cilantro, for serving


  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Sauté onion and bell pepper until soft, about 7 minutes. Stir in chili powder, paprika, cumin, garlic powder, dried oregano, cayenne pepper, salt, and green onion.
  2. Once everything is well combined, add in quinoa. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes. Stir in vinegar and ground meat, and cook until heated through. Serve with sliced avocados, grated cheese, and/or chopped cilantro. Enjoy!


*Use about 10-12 ounces uncooked ground turkey or beef meat if you don't have already cooked meat. *To make quinoa, cook about 1 cup of uncooked quinoa in 2 cups water.


Mexican Fried Quinoa

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Meme Inge is a registered dietitian/nutritionist living in New Orleans, LA - notably referred as The Big Easy. Growing up surrounded by a family of cooks, Meme has always been a lover of food - both healthy and not so healthy. She started the blog Living Well Kitchen as an outlet for sharing her kitchen creations and nutrition knowledge with others. Living Well Kitchen is busting with recipes, practical nutrition advice, local restaurant reviews, fitness fun, and any other ramblings she may have. Join her as she waxes poetic about fruits & veggies and tries to make southern staples just a little bit healthier.

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