Mexican quinoa stew

  • Preparation Time 15 Minutes
  • Cooking Time 25 Minutes
  • Serves 4-5

This time of the year nothing beats a good thick tasty stew. Something that sticks to your ribs and warms you from the inside out. This one fits the bill in so many ways, packed with flavour and spices, just what you expect from Mexican food. Containing quinoa which is a complete protein and the two different beans it has great health benefits for vegans and vegetarians. The roasted red peppers and cumin provide a smokey background to the dish.

A fabulous stew to share with friends and for relaxing at the weekend. Easy to throw together and cooked in one pot. The garnishes make it extra special.


Make sure you rinse the quinoa well before using. The grains are coated naturally with a chemical by the name of Saponin. This can irritate the gut and also make the quinoa taste bitter. Most are removed in the processing but it is best to rinse the quinoa under a running tap in a fine-mesh sieve.


  • 1 tbsp Olive oil, or spray oil
  • 3 Carrots diced
  • 1 white onion chopped
  • 2 Sticks of celery chopped
  • 4 Crushed cloves of garlic
  • 2 Roasted red peppers fresh or in brine rinsed
  • A handful of chopped coriander
  • 2 red or green peppers
  • 2 Tins of chopped tomatoes
  • 900ml Water
  • 1 Tin of black beans rinsed and drained
  • 1 Tin of kidney beans rinsed and drained
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 85g Dried quinoa, well rinsed
  • 1/8th tsp smoked paprika
  • ground black pepper

Garnishes of your choice such as

  • Diced avocado
  • Grated cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Tortilla chips
  • Soft Tortillas


  1. If you are using fresh red peppers, which I recommend, preheat the oven to 220C, slice off the cheeks of pepper and place on an oiled baking sheet and spray with oil. Cook until the skin is blackened. This takes roughly 20 minutes. Once done take them out of the oven and place on one side.
  2. While this is doing heat a large deep saucepan and add the oil.
  3. To the pan add the chopped onion, carrots, garlic and celery and cook for around 10 minutes until the vegetables start to soften
  4. Next add the black beans (not the kidney beans), tomatoes, water, spices, quinoa, seasoning and coriander and bring a boil. Lower the heat and let it simmer with the lid on for around 15-20 minutes, until quinoa is cooked.
  5. In a blender or food processor place the red peppers and 3 cups of the stew and blitz and return to the pan, add the kidney beans and warm them through. Taste to see if the seasoning needs to be adjusted.
  6. This will keep in the fridge for 4-5 days in airtight containers or freezes well for around 3 months.

If you make this, don’t forget to tag me on Twitter as @veganalchemist1 or my Facebook page I love seeing your versions of the recipes. I would love to hear your comments too.

2 thoughts on “Mexican quinoa stew

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  1. Dorothy's New Vintage Kitchen – I'm a writer, cook, gardener, photographer, poet, quilter, and accomplished daydreamer. I'm also a wife, mother, grandmother, sister. cousin, aunt, and friend, no particular order on any given day. I've been a writer all my life, newspaper reporter and columnist, radio news writer, and magazine contributor, and poet and short-story writer as the spirit moves. Now, I turn my attention to my cookbook, the blog, and a cooking column "Memorable Meals," which runs in our county newspaper. Besides my family, I love dogs, cats, good coffee, and my never-dwindling pile of books I intend to read. Our family ran a small Vermont Inn for 18 years, with our focus on local, organic ingredients. After many years of daily serving up of our local delicacies, cooking classes, and catering, we are now only open for special events, and the odd cooking class as the spirit moves me. We also host musicians and artists, having helped produce a musical festival and other musical events for nearly 20 years. Many incredible artists have found a place at our table. Wonderful experiences, we will treasure always. My family and friends are my practice subjects. With a family that includes nut, peanut, tree fruit, and vegetable allergies, gluten intolerance, dairy intolerance, vegetarians, vegans, heart conscious, and a couple of picky eaters, there has to be a few quick tricks in the book to keep everyone fed and happy! Personally, I do not eat red meat or most dairy (usually) for health reasons, making the occasional exception at Thanksgiving and Christmas or our anniversary if the duck is locally raised. I do eat fish and seafood, so I try to come up with alternatives and substitutions when available. I serve local organic eggs and cheeses to my family who can tolerate dairy (My husband recently had a heart attack, and I need to watch my own cholesterol so I am careful, but have been known to let a little piece of really good cheese accidentally fall on my plate!). I believe strongly that eating in a way that is good for our planet is also good for our bodies! I cook by the seasons and draw on inspiration from the strong and talented women in my family who came before me, as well as the youth in the family who look at the world with fresh eyes. Food links us all, whether sharing a meal, cooking it together, or writing about it for others to enjoy. I love taking an old recipe and giving it a modern spin, especially if I can make it a littler healthier and use foods that are kinder to the Earth and to our bodies. I believe strongly in sustainable, delicious eating of whole foods, and the wonderful flavors we have at our fingertips! And finally, I love conversing with all the talented cooks and chefs out there who dot the globe! It's a wonderful, world full of culinary pen pals, and I cherish them all! XXXOOO Dorothy
    Dorothy's New Vintage Kitchen says:

    What a lovely stew!

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