Quinoa Soup for Adventurers

I have been working all day and this morning I took out books from the library on traveling Europe. I’ve been reading them on the bus and getting excited. I made this soup up because I was tired and hungry. It’s very easy but it tastes very good! It is one of the meatiest tasting soups that I’ve ever made, I think. It’s vegetarian, but here are the reasons why it seems like meat soup to me:

  • there are delicious salty & fatty morsels in it
  • it involves fried onions and mushrooms with fresh parsley
  • it’s hearty
  • the diced fried mushroom looks like little bits of meat
  • it’s got a fast cooking time

It’s super easy to make this soup and it would be good for traveling, except I don’t think that anyone travels with home made stock in their carry-on. I think that I’ve become one of those people who is obsessed with homemade stock. You really couldn’t make this soup without homemade stock. Well you could but it would taste profoundly different. I was reading a book about sauces and how many classic sauces involve reducing stock and how important stock is. Well I’ve become a person who cares about stock that much, except I cook vegetarian and obsessively save all my good vegetable scraps to turn into stock later. I think it’s a lifestyle.

Anyway, here it is in all it’s simplistic glory. I really made this on the fly and didn’t measure anything. Here’s a jumping off point for you:


  • Homemade vegetable stock, about 2 cups
  • Quinoa, rinsed, about 1 cup
  • Vegetable oil, a couple Tbsp.
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 2 large brown mushrooms, diced
  • Salt, a dash
  • Mustard seeds, a sprinkle
  • Sharp aged white cheddar, a small hand full diced
  • Fresh parsley, a small hand full minced
  1. Put the stock in a medium sized pot to boil. When it’s boiling add the quinoa and reduce the heat to low. In my mind quinoa takes 17 min. to cook but I think it actually takes less than that. Simmer until the quinoa is almost cooked, then turn the heat off and let the pot sit for a few minutes with the lid on.
  2. Meanwhile, place the oil, onion, mushrooms and mustard seeds into a small skillet and saute over medium-high heat. Cook until the onions are soft and translucent and the mushrooms are shriveled, or until you can’t wait any longer and just want to eat.
  3. Spoon the fried ingredients into the boiled ingredients. Toss in the cheese and parsley. Stir and serve.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Mona Banek says:

    Quinoa is my new favorite food – so good in so many ways.

  2. Yes! It’s so yummy and makes my body feel very good. Mona, quinoa grows quite well in our climate too! The plant produced its own insecticide and so it’s quite hearty. One of the reasons why it’s expensive in the store is because it can’t be processed with the same machinery as other grains.

    Love you,

  3. Katherine says:


    This soup sounds really good, especially since I have stopped eating meat (after watching the Michael Pollan documentary Food, Inc and getting all freaked out about meat!) trouble is, I no longer have time to make homemade stock. I haven’t made stock in years. It makes me sad, but, well, boxed stock was made for lazy people and working moms! I will probably use chicken stock for this. I just bought some rainbow quinoa – its a very pretty dark red with little flecks of white.

    1. Hi Katherine,

      Yea Micheal Pollan. I love his book Botany of Desire. You make me want to post more vegetarian recipes because there are so many good ones. Be sure to check out the cookbook section. 🙂


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