BBQ Shrimp Quinoa Bowls

4.25 from 4 votes
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BBQ Shrimp Quinoa Bowls are a healthy dinner idea for tonight or any night! With sauteed shrimp in BBQ sauce, broccoli and cheese served with quinoa, this healthy quinoa bowl recipe becomes a kid-friendly meal!

titled image of a BBQ shrimp quinoa bowl


Originally published on Aug 13, 2013.

Every night, as we are coming to the dinner table, The Bug asks me what we are having. So I will say, “Maple Sesame Glazed Salmon and rice and sugar snap peas”, or “Spinach Tomato Feta Frittata, and toast”, or “Steak with sweet potatoes and carrots”, or “Salads with chicken and berries and cheese and pecans“, or “cheesy BBQ shrimp quinoa bowls.”

Clearly we usually have multicomponent meals. Not necessarily complex, so don’t think I am superhuman or bragging or anything.

After all, I make rice in a rice cooker, sweet potatoes are baked in the oven, and sometimes our veggies are frozen and cooked in the microwave. They definitely include more than a single item, though, and always have components that he loves.

So what do you think his response is?



“Sounds good, let’s eat!”


“Gee, thanks mom, for all of your hard work, and, in between taking care of my brother and I, playing with us, bathing us, keeping our clothes clean, you manage to put together a delicious and healthy meal that I (usually) love.”

I don’t think so. (OK, he is three. Maybe that last one is a little beyond what I should expect.) His response is:

“And what else??”

Seriously kid?! I give up. Here’s some Spaghetti-Os.

Not really. I am definitely of the “one meal for the whole family” school of thought, and I think that is part of the reason why he likes a pretty diverse array of foods.

Though I get the feeling he spoiled me, and Smiles is gonna be one of those kids who only eats white food.

gluten free BBQ shrimp quinoa bowl

But there is no plain white food in a BBQ shrimp quinoa bowl. Yet it is still healthy, super simple and perfect for crazy weeknights.


What is a quinoa bowl?

A quinoa bowl is a meal with quinoa as the primary ingredient, and of course, the meal is served in a bowl. Bowl meals are popular because they are versatile, with the ingredients easily swapped for whatever you have on hand and/or using flavors your family enjoys.

And what you need for a weekday supper is something that is not only easy, but also versatile.

Take this recipe as a starting point and change it to your preferences. A few ideas to consider:

  • Don’t like shrimp? Have it with grilled chicken, or, like we did the other night, some turkey kielbasa or other sausage.
  • Vegetarian? Use tofu.
  • Bored with plain steamed broccoli? Roast it. Nuke a freezer bag of it.
  • All out of broccoli? Toss in some snap peas or another veggie. Or don’t. I won’t tell.

Are Quinoa Bowls Gluten Free?

Quinoa is a gluten free whole grain. Therefore, provided as long as you add other gluten free components to your quinoa bowl, you will have a gluten free meal. In this recipe, the quinoa is mixed with a cheesy mixture of Greek yogurt and cheddar, and to top it all you need is:

  • Shrimp
  • Barbecue sauce
  • Broccoli

Just be sure to choose a sauce that isn’t made with any gluten-containing ingredients and you are good to go. You’ll find my recommended sauce just above the recipe.

bowl of broccoli and BBQ shrimp over quinoa

How long does it take to make BBQ shrimp?

Making BBQ shrimp on a grill usually takes 10-12 minutes, plus time to preheat the grill. For this stove top BBQ shrimp recipe, everything cooks up easily, in less than 30 minutes!

  1. Cook up the quinoa and stir in some Greek yogurt and cheese.
  2. While the quinoa is cooking, steam or roast a few broccoli florets. Heck, nuke a frozen steamer bag if you want to.
  3. Quickly saute a few shrimp in a pan on the stove top, then toss them in your favorite barbecue sauce.
  4. Add everything to a bowl, and voila! You’ve got a fancy shmancy BBQ shrimp quinoa bowl dinner!

What is the best barbecue sauce to make BBQ Shrimp Quinoa Bowls?

My favorite BBQ Sauce is Stubb’s Original Bar-B-Q Sauce. It’s just a little sweet and just a little spicy, and has the most amazing flavor. Plus there is no High Fructose Corn Syrup, but it’s still available at a reasonable price compared to some other higher end brands that are also sweetened with brown sugar or molasses, but none of the fake stuff. Plus Stubb’s states right on tha label that it is gluten free. And trust me, they are not paying me to say this. It has been my go-to for years. And if you would like that same flavor profile, but a bit more sweet or heat, they have a Sticky Sweet variety, as well as a Spicy version.

BBQ shrimp quinoa bowl with broccoli

You will love this meal. The Hubby has always turned up his nose at quinoa, but make it a little creamy and cheesy, and he has second helpings.

The Bug, while still admittedly not the biggest quinoa fan (he has texture issues – won’t eat couscous either) will eat some, and he devours the shrimp and broccoli.

And after he devours it, do I get a “Thanks, Mom!”, “Yum.”, or “I’m full.”? Forget it.

All I hear is, “What’s for a snack?” Ugh!


BBQ shrimp quinoa bowls with broccoli

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If you like BBQ shrimp, try these shrimp recipes:

BBQ Shrimp Quinoa Bowl

Quinoa bowls are a simple and versatile dinner that comes together quickly for busy weeknights. BBQ shrimp and steamed broccoli served over cheesy quinoa are a delicious dinner the whole family will love!

I hope you’ll leave a comment and give it a FIVE STAR rating or share a photo on this pin on Pinterest!

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BBQ shrimp bowl with cheesy quinoa
4.3 from 4 votes

BBQ Shrimp Quinoa Bowl

Quinoa bowls are a simple and versatile but satisfying dinner that comes together quickly for busy weeknights. Sauteed shrimp tossed in BBQ sauce is added to a bowl with quinoa and steamed broccoli. Healthy and kid friendly.
Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 25 mins
Servings: 4


For the Cheesy Quinoa:

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cup chicken or vegetable broth or stock
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup (about 2 oz) shredded cheddar cheese (I use Cabot 50% Light Sharp Cheddar) - sometimes I use up to 1 c (about 4 oz. depending on how cheesy I want it)

For the Shrimp and Broccoli:

  • 1 1/2 lbs shrimp peeled and deveined
  • Olive oil spray or nonstick cooking spray or 1 tsp oil
  • 1/4 cup barbecue sauce plus additional for serving, if desired
  • 1 lb broccoli cooked as desired (steamed, roasted, etc.)


For the Cheesy Quinoa:

  • Combine quinoa, broth, a pinch of salt and pepper, and dry mustard in a pot, and cook according to package directions, about 15 minutes.
  • When quinoa is fully cooked, stir in Greek yogurt and cheese.

For the Shrimp and Broccoli:

  • While the quinoa is cooking, prepare broccoli as desired, and heat a pan over medium heat.
  • Coat with olive oil spray or nonstick cooking spray (or 1 tsp oil).
  • Add the shrimp to the pan, and cook about 2 minutes per side, or until shrimp is pink and nearly cooked through.
  • Pour the barbecue sauce over the shrimp and toss to coat. Cook for another minute or two, until shrimp is cooked through.

For the Bowls:

  • Divide quinoa between four bowls.
  • Top with broccoli and shrimp, and additional barbecue sauce, if desired.
Nutrition Facts
BBQ Shrimp Quinoa Bowl
Amount Per Serving (1 g)
Calories 519 Calories from Fat 108
% Daily Value*
Fat 12g18%
Saturated Fat 4g20%
Cholesterol 448mg149%
Sodium 1815mg76%
Potassium 915mg26%
Carbohydrates 47g16%
Fiber 6g24%
Sugar 11g12%
Protein 53g106%
Vitamin A 905IU18%
Vitamin C 108.3mg131%
Calcium 464mg46%
Iron 6.9mg38%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


BBQ Shrimp Quinoa Bowls Pinterest Collage
  1. Kristen

    3 stars
    We just had this for dinner. The husband & kids loved it!! I wish I would have liked it more… but I just can’t get over my weird dislike for greek yogurt. Try as I might, I just despise it. I think I might try it with some sour cream. Not quite as healthy, but should come out similar!

    1. That is the great thing about this recipe – it’s versatility! We hadit with turkey sausage the other night, and chicken or pork or, heck, probably tofu would be equally as tasty!

  2. Too funny about the reactions of your kids at mealtime. I think this is one way I could get my husband to eat quinoa. Great secret about making it cheesy and creamy.

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