Buttery Garlic Quinoa

Buttery Garlic Quinoa is an easy, flavorful, fluffy side dish that you can quickly make to serve with any of your favorite main dishes.

Quinoa is a simple Side Dish with a mildly sweet and nutty taste. It is similar to Brown Rice in that it’s a great base recipe to which you can add a variety of ingredients and flavors. However, quinoa has more dietary fiber and protein than rice does, so it’s perfect for healthy meals.

Buttery Garlic Quinoa in serving dish with spoon

Quinoa is a versatile dish that’s great to add to your daily diet. It is simple to make with a chewy, fluffy texture that pairs perfectly with a variety of food. Quinoa is also wonderfully healthy as it’s packed with nutrients, fiber, and minerals. Plus, it’s gluten-free so it is a great choice for anyone on gluten-free diets.

For this version, we’ve added some buttery garlic flavor to typical quinoa for some more interest in your meal. Buttery Garlic Quinoa is perfect to serve with any of your favorite weeknight meals. Just serve your favorite meat dishes over a bed of Buttery Garlic Quinoa. It would go well with Slow Cooker Tikka Masala Chicken, Brown Sugar Sriracha Chicken, or any number of delicious family dinners. Essentially, any recipe where you’d typically serve rice would also taste amazing with Buttery Garlic Quinoa.

Collage of prep steps for Buttery Garlic Quinoa

You can also stir quinoa into your favorite soup recipes to make them more filling. Or, serve it up in a protein-rich bowl of beans and veggies for an easy side or lunch dish.

Quinoa is also a good base for a salad. Cook the Buttery Garlic Quinoa as usual, then toss your favorite green salad with leafy veggies like spinach or kale. Add in some diced tomatoes, cucumber, bell pepper, onions, and any other vegetables you like. Toss the whole salad with your quinoa and enjoy!

More Easy Side Dish Recipes

Cooking Tips for Buttery Garlic Quinoa

  • Onions and garlic: Add the butter to your saucepan over medium heat. Once it’s melted add the chopped onions. Continue cooking the onions, while stirring for 5-6 minutes until translucent. Then add in the garlic, and cook for an additional 30 seconds.
  • Quinoa: Add the chicken broth, a cup of quinoa, and salt to the pot. Stir the uncooked quinoa well. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Then lower the heat to let it simmer for the next step. Add a tight-fitting lid to keep the steam inside the pot and cook for 15-18 minutes until the broth is absorbed.
  • Serve: Fluff the Buttery Garlic Quinoa with a fork, add any additional toppings you want, and serve with your meal.
Buttery Garlic Quinoa finished cooking in pan

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I add mushrooms to quinoa?

For some extra texture and flavor, add sautéed mushrooms to the mix. Slice the mushrooms and sauté them in a separate pan. When the quinoa is done, mix the mushrooms in before serving.

What vegetables are good added to quinoa?

There are a variety of other roasted vegetables you can add like green peppers, roasted asparagus, carrots, broccoli, or peas. Chop your choice of roasted vegetables into bite-sized pieces and stir them with the Buttery Garlic Quinoa before serving.

What seasonings could I use with Buttery Garlic Quinoa?

You can add a variety of herbs and spices for some extra flavor in the recipe. Try mixing in fresh parsley, black pepper, rosemary, cilantro, basil, bay leaves, or thyme.

Can I add cheese to this quinoa recipe?

A great way to add some melty texture and more savory flavor is to top your quinoa off with some extra cheese. Parmesan, mozzarella, provolone, or cheddar cheese would taste great.

Does lemon go well with quinoa?

For some refreshing, citrus flavor, squeeze fresh lemon juice over the top of the quinoa before serving.

Buttery Garlic Quinoa in serving dish with spoon

Dishes to Serve with Buttery Garlic Quinoa

How to Store Buttery Garlic Quinoa

  • Serve: Don’t leave cooked Buttery Garlic Quinoa at room temperature for more than 2 hours.
  • Store: Seal the dish in an airtight container to store in the fridge for up to 7 days.
  • Freeze: You could also seal and freeze the quinoa for up to 3 months.
Buttery Garlic Quinoa in serving dish with spoon

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Buttery Garlic Quinoa

Buttery Garlic Quinoa is an easy, flavorful, fluffy side dish that you can quickly make to serve with any of your favorite main dishes.
Yield 8 Servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup onion , chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic , minced
  • 1 cup quinoa , rinsed well, and drained
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  • Add butter to a medium saucepan on medium heat.
  • Add onion, cooking for 5-6 minutes until onions are translucent.
  • Add in garlic, stir and cook for 30 seconds.
  • Add quinoa, chicken broth, and salt, stir well.
  • Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  • Cook, covered, for 15-18 minutes until broth is absorbed.
  • Fluff with a fork before serving.


Calories: 112kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 8mg | Sodium: 362mg | Potassium: 188mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 92IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 19mg | Iron: 1mg
Keyword: Buttery Garlic Quinoa
Buttery Garlic Quinoa Collage

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the upcoming cookbook: Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients which is being published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

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