Cheddar Cheese Quinoa

4.75 from 8 votes
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Cheesy Quinoa has plenty of cheddar cheese to make the whole family happy. On busy weeknights, pair it with your favorite quick and easy dinner recipes to get a delicious meal on the table fast. It’s a healthy and naturally gluten free side dish packed with protein and whole grains. Plus, this cheddar cheese quinoa side dish recipe is totally kid-approved.

My kids have now reached the age where they have become co-conspirators. Sometimes they are conspiring together. Sometimes one is conspiring to use the other to get what he wants or stay out of trouble. But regardless of the circumstances, they have reached the age of parental manipulation.

They are 5 and 8. I’m doomed.

One wants to watch TV but he doesn’t think he’ll get the answer he wants when he asks mom. He knows his brother would love to watch TV. So he sends his brother, thinking mom might be more lenient with the little guy.

One wants to go downstairs for breakfast but knows mom isn’t out of the shower. Technically they are supposed to wait. He asks the other one if he wants to go down for breakfast. Since both of my kids are always hungry, he says he does. So the first one suggests to the second one he should go down, and then the first one tells mom that he only went down because the second one wanted to go down for breakfast.

I guess it’s just paybacks. I mean, I’ve been conspiring against them for years. Yep, conspiring to get them to eat healthy foods like spinach, cauliflower, and yes, even quinoa. What’s my trick?

Cheese. Lots of cheese.

Cheesy quinoa from above with green napkin

How do you cook quinoa?

Yes, cheddar cheese is the key to convincing my kids to eat quinoa. When it is this creamy and cheesy, even they can’t resist. With plenty of cheddar cheese, you’ll have everyone eating this easy quinoa side dish recipe.

But before you turn it into cheesy quinoa, you start with plain old quinoa.

  1. First, place the quinoa in a strainer, rinse it well, and drain thoroughly.
  2. Combine it in a saucepan with twice as much liquid as quinoa. You can use plain water or use a chicken or vegetable broth. Depending on how you plan to use the cooked quinoa, you can also add herbs or spices.
  3. Cover the pot and bring to a boil. Then reduce the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes.
  4. You’ll know the quinoa is done when the liquid has been absorbed and it becomes tender. You’ll also see the little “tails” of the quinoa.
  5. Typically when using the 2:1 liquid to quinoa ratio you will not need to drain the quinoa.

Cooking up a big batch of quinoa is always a good idea. You can sprinkle it on salads, add it to soups, or use it for other recipes.

What can you make with leftover cooked quinoa?

Cheesy quinoa healthy side dish in a white bowl

Creamy Quinoa Side Dish Recipe with Cheddar Cheese

Made with only five ingredients (plus salt and pepper), and ready in about twenty minutes, it’s perfect for a busy weeknight meal and sure to be a kid-approved hit. Add this healthy and protein-packed whole grain and gluten free side to your dinner tonight!

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Here is a brief overview so you can see just how easy it is to make. Scroll down to the printable recipe card for the full quantities and details.
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What You’ll Need

  • Uncooked quinoa
  • Chicken or vegetable broth
  • Salt and pepper
  • Dry mustard
  • Greek yogurt
  • Cheddar cheese

Making cheesy quinoa

For this recipe, after cooking and seasoning the quinoa, stir in Greek yogurt and shredded sharp cheddar cheese to make this quinoa side dish recipe.

What do you serve with Cheesy Quinoa?

Cheddar Cheese Quinoa in a fancy white bowl

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More cheesy side dish recipes

Cheddar Cheese Quinoa in a fancy white bowl
4.8 from 8 votes

Cheesy Quinoa

A healthy side dish recipe with plenty of cheddar cheese to make the whole family happy. Plus it’s packed with protein and whole grains, and it’s gluten free.
Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 20 mins
Servings: 4


  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa , rinsed and drained
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth or stock
  • salt & pepper , to taste
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese (about 2 oz., you can use up to 1 cup if you would like it more cheesy)


  • Combine quinoa, broth, a pinch of salt and pepper, and dry mustard in a pot.
  • Cover and bring to a boil. The reduce heat and simmer as per package instructions, about 15 minutes.
  • When quinoa is fully cooked, stir in Greek yogurt and cheese.
  • Season to taste with more salt and pepper, if needed.
Nutrition Facts
Cheesy Quinoa
Amount Per Serving
Calories 280 Calories from Fat 81
% Daily Value*
Fat 9g14%
Saturated Fat 4g20%
Cholesterol 20mg7%
Sodium 273mg11%
Potassium 379mg11%
Carbohydrates 32g11%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 15g30%
Vitamin A 160IU3%
Vitamin C 0.2mg0%
Calcium 158mg16%
Iron 2.3mg13%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


  1. Colleen Benedict

    I am making this tonight! I don’t have any yogurt, but I do have sour cream, I’m thinking that will work too, right?

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