Can You Freeze Cooked Quinoa?

Cooked Quinoa

Can you freeze quinoa? If you’re thinking about cooking and freezing quinoa in bulk so you have it readily available later, then this article is for you.

Quinoa has been enjoyed in the Peruvian Andes for centuries. This grain-like product is high in protein and contains a range of vitamins and nutrients. Although quinoa is gaining popularity in the United States, it may not be as readily available as more common American foods.

Those who enjoy this food often look for ways to make up for the lack of common availability by researching methods of freezing cooked quinoa. The practice of good practices for freezing prepared produce also gives consumers the opportunity to take advantage of local specialties based on quinoa.

Although quinoa can be just as delicious after freezing and thawing, you might not be inclined to freeze foods. This is not a problem as all three types of quinoa have a fairly long shelf life. White, red, and black quinoa can be stored in the pantry or refrigerator for up to 2 to 3 years. An airtight container should be used for both storage locations to preserve freshness and protect from insects.

Quinoa is often sold in bulk, and freezing the cooked product can help prevent the quinoa from spoiling. If the freezing process is done correctly, previously frozen quinoa can taste just as good as freshly cooked quinoa. Below is a step-by-step guide on how to freeze quinoa:

Read Also: Can you freeze zucchini?

How do you freeze quinoa?

Freezing cooked quinoa allows you to have this versatile food ready for salads, side dishes, or as a main dish ingredient. With these simple steps, you can enjoy quinoa almost anytime.

Cooking on the quinoa

Begin the process by cooking the quinoa. Use a large saucepan and add one part quinoa to two parts water. Bring the water to a boil, reduce the heat and cover the pot. Let the mixture simmer for about 15 to 20 minutes. The quinoa is ready when all the water has been absorbed. Fluff the cooked quinoa with a fork.

Preparing quinoa for freezing

When you have finished cooking the quinoa, you need to let it cool at room temperature. It is best to spread the product on a baking sheet as this will facilitate even cooling and allow the product to cool faster. When the quinoa has cooled sufficiently, you can divide the batch into desired portions.

Packing the quinoa for freezing

Many people use sandwich-sized ziplock bags because they can hold up to 2 cups of cooking quinoa. Squeeze out as much air as possible from the small bags. This will help prevent freezer burn and allow the quinoa to freeze more completely. Seal the small bags tightly and place in a larger ziplock freezer bag.

Write the date on the large pouch to help you keep track of the product’s lifespan. Frozen, cooked quinoa has a frozen shelf life of up to 2 months.

How do you thaw frozen quinoa?

When you’re ready to enjoy some quinoa, take out as many bags as you need and let them thaw at room temperature. This process generally takes about 1 to 2 hours. Once the quinoa is completely thawed, prepare as desired and enjoy.

An alternate method of defrosting quinoa is to remove the product from the bag and empty it into a bowl. Thaw the quinoa in the microwave for about 1 minute and it’s ready to eat.


Quinoa can be used in a variety of recipes and has tremendous nutritional value. It’s also gluten-free, making it the perfect grain for people with celiac disease.

The fact is, it doesn’t matter if you prefer to cook and freeze or make your quinoa fresh, it’s a great tasting food that’s easy to make. Now that you know how to freeze quinoa, you can keep the excess and enjoy some quinoa any time of the day.