Never in a million years would I have guessed that Black Bean and Quinoa Soup would be a favorite meal around here. Yep, quinoa instead of rice.
Up until now, I’ve been a black bean soup over yellow rice kinda gal. My husband introduced me to this traditional combination, topped with tiny chopped raw onions, when we lived in Tampa. The Columbia Restaurant and Alessi’s are institutions there and yellow rice is often on the menu. Let’s just say, this dish has been staple at our house for a loooong time.
Fast forward to now. I’m intrigued by the never ending uses of the super food quinoa. And, Greek Quinoa Salad was just the beginning of my experimentation. This seed-like grain is a consideration in just about every dish I enjoy…if not in reality, at least in my imagination.
That’s how I got to this version of Black Bean and Quinoa Soup. I started off with an old favorite that was transformed by the substitution of quinoa in a quest to make one of my favorite soups even healthier.
A very slightly spicy black bean soup is served over cilantro lime quinoa. You could eat the soup alone or over your favorite grain (and for my hubby that’s still yellow rice) and be completely satisfied.
The cilantro lime quinoa is a stand alone dish as well. Combine the two and you have perfection.
I’m a fan of Chipotle Mexican Grill’s Cilantro Lime Rice and this side is a take on that specialty item. It would be tasty in a burrito or taco and of course stirred into black bean soup.
If you stock your pantry with a few basics, then you’ll always have what you need to make black bean and quinoa soup. Be sure to freeze any leftovers.
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup onion, diced (about 1 medium sized onion)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 15-ounce cans of black beans, rinsed and drained (approx. 6 cups)
- 2 14.5-ounce cans tomatoes, diced (or about 4 cups fresh)
- ⅓ cup red wine vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon fresh oregano (1 teaspoon dried)
- 1 Tablespoon fresh thyme (1 teaspoon dried)
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 1 cup quinoa
- 2 cups water
- 1 Tablespoon lime juice
- ½ cup cilantro, chopped
- Avocado, diced
- Cilantro, chopped
- Heat olive oil in a large cooking pot over medium heat.
- Add onion and garlic and saute for about 5 minutes or until the onions are softened.
- Add the remaining soup ingredients, except for the garnishes, to the pot and stir to combine.
- Raise heat to high bring soup to a low boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes.
- Place quinoa and water in a pot and bring to a boil.
- Reduce to simmer, cover and cook for about 15 minutes or until all of the water is absorbed. Grains will be soft and translucent and the germ ring will be visible on the outside of the grain.
- Fluff with fork and stir in lime juice and cilantro.
- Spoon quinoa into a bowl and ladel soup over the top.
- Garnish with avocado and cilantro, if desired
Change can be hard…but, in this case it can also be very, very tasty.
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