This Mexican savory breakfast with quinoa recipe is so easy and delicious! It's vegan, gluten-free and perfect for meal prep breakfast. It is a breakfast high in protein, great in flavor, and takes less than 30-minutes to cook and put together.
This easy vegan protein breakfast is traditional cooked quinoa. Next top the breakfast bowl with pico de gallo, avocado, lime juice and hot sauce. It’s great for meal prep breakfast or lunch!
I always try to have a balanced meal, that includes vegetables, protein and carbs. That gets tough with breakfast. Whatever balanced breakfast I make, it better be easy to make ahead for meal prep.
That’s because I always get so bored of breakfasts! It only takes me a few times of the same thing and I get bored beyond belief. I also hate taking the time to make it in the mornings. If it’s not meal prepped, it’s not going to happen!
I can sometimes do a sweet breakfast, but often times I want to wait for something savory like lunch. This protein breakfast with quinoa bowl gives me the best of both worlds. There are both nutrients for breakfast without being boring!
What is quinoa?
Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) is an ancient grain and nowadays called a superfood. It is often used as a “healthier” substitute for rice and pasta. It seems like a whole grain and is considered a whole-grain food, but it is actually a seed. It is gluten free and is often eaten as a side dish. Quinoa is often used in vegan and plant-based cooking as a source of protein.
How do I cook quinoa?
Quinoa can be prepared like brown rice or barley. Bring the liquid and quinoa to a boil and then simmer until the liquid cooks off. Then let sit for a few minutes before serving.
Quinoa is much easier to cook than rice (in my opinion). I have spent YEARS burning rice. Or I would make rice that is still soaking wet after what felt like hours on the stove top. Quinoa has never caused me that hardship!
Making a quinoa bowl
A quinoa breakfast bowl that is savory only takes a 30-minutes to prepare. If you prep a large quantity of quinoa it doesn't take any longer!
STEP ONE: Rinse quinoa. Then in a small pot with water, bring to a boil and then simmer until cooked.
STEP TWO: Let quinoa sit for a few minutes before adding into bowl.
STEP THREE: Top with favorite toppings!
- BLACK BEANS. This adds extra protein to this high protein breakfast bowl. Feel free to omit or swap for your favorite variation of beans.
- AVOCADO. Avocado slices for a Sunday brunch vibe, or add some guacamole.
- PICO DE GALLO. Use store-bought avocado.
- HOT SAUCE. Use your favorite!
- EXTRA PROTEIN. Top with a fried egg or Just Egg.
How to meal prep this
To meal prep this vegan breakfast bowl recipe, cook the quinoa in advance (multiply recipe) or use leftover quinoa. Place each part in a meal prep container (my favorites are these). Top with pico de gallo and hot sauce.
Avocado does not meal prep well, but you can freeze the avocado in halved or quarters. Then take out each portion the morning you will eat the protein bowl.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is quinoa healthier than rice?
How much water to use for quinoa?
It’s all about ratios with sides like quinoa and rice. For quinoa, pair 1 cup of quinoa to 2 cups water. Another option is to use vegetable stock. That will infuse more flavor into the quinoa.
Why should I wash quinoa before using it?
It is recommended to wash quinoa before cooking. This is to wash off the impurities and quinoa’s natural coating called saponin. When quinoa is not washed, it can taste bitter or soapy. Saponin contains very low levels of toxins that can cause irritation and sensitivities.
How do I know when quinoa is cooked?
Quinoa is done when the water evaporates and the quinoa has opened from its coating. It will appear as if it’s popped open out of its shell. When done, remove from heat and let sit covered for longer.
How much quinoa do I serve per person?
Quinoa, rice and barley all have a similar amount of calories per serving. I serve ⅓-½ cup of dry quinoa per person.
Other savory breakfast and brunch recipes you may like:
Savory Mexican Breakfast Quinoa Bowl
- 2 Cups Quinoa uncooked
- ¼ TSP Salt
- 1 Cup Black Beans rinsed and drained
- ¼ Cup Pico de Gallo
- 1 Cup Arugula washed thoroughly
- Place dry quinoa in a strainer and rinse thoroughly with water.
- In a small pot on the stove, add the rinsed quinoa, water and salt.
- Bring to a boil, then immediately turn down to simmer and place the lid on.
- Simmer for 20-minutes.
- Turn off heat after 20-minutes and remove the pot from the heat. Let sit for 5-minutes.
- Using a fork, fluff the quinoa by scraping it gently from the sides and bottom.
- Put together each breakfast bowl: place arugula and quinoa on the bottom. Top with ¼ cup black beans, a spoonful of pico de gallo and a dash of hot sauce if desired.