Breakfast Quinoa Oatmeal

4.98 from 170 votes

If you're looking for a new way to eat oats for breakfast, try this Quinoa Oatmeal. Each serving has 6 grams of protein to keep you energized

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If you’re trying to get on the oatmeal train but just don’t like the consistency of cooked oats, give this quinoa oatmeal a try! Instead of using rolled oats, I use quinoa and mix it with milk and sweetener to make a breakfast porridge that’s incredibly versatile, absolutely delicious and chock-full of nutrients and protein.

4 bowls of oatmeal with different toppings
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You can prepare this quinoa oatmeal in pretty much the same method you would prepare regular oatmeal. Quinoa is naturally gluten-free and the recipe is great if you’re on a plant-based diet, since it’s made with vegan milk and maple syrup, and can be dressed up with all types of fruits, nuts, seeds and spices.


How to make quinoa oatmeal

The first step is to rinse and drain the quinoa. This step is crucial to remove the bitterness from the outside of the quinoa. Make sure the water runs clear, and you’ll know it’s ready.

Rinsing and draining quinoa to make oatmeal

Stovetop instructions

I prefer making the quinoa oatmeal on the stovetop because I can toast the quinoa before adding the liquid. This gives the quinoa a nutty flavor which lends itself to a better breakfast bowl all together. And it’s really quite simple.

You’ll start by toasting the quinoa until you hear popping noises or it starts to get darker in color. Then add the milk, sweetener and salt. Here, you can also add any type of warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, ginger and/or turmeric. Cover and let it cook for 15 minutes. Then remove from heat to allow the liquid to absorb, and fluff with a fork. It’s pretty much the same process as cooking savory quinoa, only we’re using milk and sweetener.

Microwave instructions

You can also make this quinoa breakfast bowl in the microwave. Make 4 servings per my instructions or just one serving using ¼ cup of quinoa. The process here is to put everything together in a large microwave-safe bowl, then microwaving for 6 minutes, stirring and microwaving again for 3 minutes.

Just like the stovetop instructions, you’ll want to let the quinoa rest covered for 5 minutes on the countertop so the quinoa absorbs all the liquid before fluffing.

Oatmeal toppings

Here’s your chance to get creative with this basic quinoa breakfast bowl. You can customize your quinoa with whatever toppings you like. These are some popular ideas for healthy oatmeal toppings to get you started

  • Fruits:  Fresh fruits, dried fruits, freeze-dried fruits, frozen fruits or even fruit purees and jams.
  • Nuts & Seeds: Try them whole, try them ground or add them as a nut butter.
  • Cooked Grains: Just because it’s quinoa oatmeal doesn’t mean we can add other grains. You can mix the quinoa with oats or amaranth or other grains.
  • Spices: Cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, pumpkin spice or ginger are all great choices for breakfast.
  • Dairy: Try adding a splash of milk, creamer or yogurt for a creamier texture
  • Protein Powder: If you’re using protein powders, stir it in when you’re fluffing the quinoa for best taste and consistency.

Quinoa breakfast bowl ideas

Here are four ways that I tried, which were nutritious and delicious!

Blueberries with lemon zest and toasted sliced almonds.

Quinoa breakfast bowl with blueberries, lemon zest and almonds

Apples with pecans, cinnamon and maple syrup.

Quinoa breakfast bowl with apples, pecans, cinnamon and maple syrup

Bananas with walnuts, hemp seeds, cinnamon and caramel sauce.

Quinoa breakfast bowl with bananas, walnuts, cinnamon and caramel sauce

Peaches with vanilla yogurt, granola and hemp seeds.

Quinoa breakfast bowl with peaches, yogurt and granola

Tips for making quinoa oatmeal

  1. Rinse the quinoa. You might be in a hurry and feel inclined to skip this part, but I urge you not to. Boxed quinoa is usually cleaned. However quinoa has a natural [bitter] coating on the outside that helps protect it against bacteria. Rinsing the quinoa will remove this bitterness so it tastes better!
  2. Don’t forget the salt. Salt rounds out the flavor of quinoa so it’s not bland. It will help bring out the nuttiness of the quinoa. Use just a pinch or ⅛ teaspoon for one cup of quinoa.
  3. Don’t overcook the quinoa oatmeal. This can lead to a mushy consistency which we want to avoid. Instead, keep the ratio 1 cup quinoa to 2 cups milk and only cook for 15 minutes on low until the quinoa is tender. Don’t worry if the milk is not all absorbed. It will continue to thicken as it sits.
  4. Allow the quinoa to rest. This keeps it from clumping together and lets it dry out until it’s fluffy, so you’re not left with clumpy wet quinoa.
4 bowls of Quinoa oatmeal served with a variety of toppings for breakfast

I’m a huge oatmeal fan and enjoy it in so many ways because it gives me a chance to start my day with big serving of protein, add another serving of fruit to my diet and have something warm and comforting in the morning. If you’ve never tried a quinoa breakfast bowl, start with my basic recipe below and explore ways to customize it to your taste!

For more oatmeal recipes:

If you’ve tried this healthy-ish feel good Quinoa Oatmeal recipe or any other recipe on FeelGoodFoodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories!

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Breakfast Quinoa Oatmeal

If you're looking for a new way to eat oats for breakfast, try this Quinoa Oatmeal. Each serving has 6 grams of protein to keep you energized
5 from 170 votes
Servings 4 servings
Course Breakfast
Calories 187
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
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Stovetop Instructions

  • Rinse and drain the quinoa.
  • In a small saucepan, add quinoa over medium heat and lightly toast it until it starts to make popping noises, about, 5-7 minutes.
  • Stir in almond milk, maple syrup, and salt; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover and cook until quinoa is tender and liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and allow quinoa to set for 5 more minutes. 

Microwave Instructions

  • Rinse and drain the quinoa.
  • In a medium microwave-safe bowl, add quinoa, milk, maple syrup and salt. Cover with a lid or plate and microwave for 6 minutes. Stir and return to the microwave and cook for 3 more minutes. Remove from the microwave and allow quinoa to set for 5 more minutes. 


  • Fluff the quinoa with a fork. Divide into four bowls and serve as you would oatmeal with fruits and toppings of your choice.


Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container. They will last about 5 days in the fridge.
Make Ahead Tips: You can make the quinoa oatmeal in the microwave or on the stovetop in advance. To reheat, simply add a splash of milk or water and microwave for 1 minute.
Substitutes: For best results, follow the recipe as is. You can also use any type of milk you’d like and any sweetener of choice.
* Please note the nutrition label does not include any toppings.


Calories: 187kcal, Carbohydrates: 31g, Protein: 6g, Fat: 4g, Sodium: 310mg, Potassium: 250mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 3g, Calcium: 175mg, Iron: 1.9mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

Cuisine American
Course: Breakfast

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Recipe Rating


  1. Bora says:

    What a waste of time, oatmeal in the title but no oats.

    1. Yumna says:

      Sorry this was frustrating for you, but I have many oatmeal recipes here if you are looking for something specific.

  2. Pat says:

    Yum !
    I didn’t like quinoa until I tried your breakfast quinoa recipe ! Yum !
    I tried all 4 ways of topping the breakfast quinoa and I love them all! Yum !
    It’s going to be one of my favorite go to breakfast choices from now on! Yum !

  3. Marian Geerling says:

    Quinoa is NOT oats! This is NOT oatmeal! It is porridge.

    Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) is the seed of the Chenopodium quinoa plant.

    Botanically speaking, it’s not a grain. However, it’s often called a “pseudograin” because it’s similar in nutrients and eaten the same way as cereal grains.

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Thank you for the feedback. The recipe is named based on what people in my area call it.

  4. Marcus A. says:

    My Question: Do you always have to boil the quinoa?
    I’ve been eating overnight oats with chia seed, flax meal, hemp seed for years now.
    I’ll add the fruits and nuts when ready to eat.
    Is it be ok to just rinse and drain the quinoa before adding to my overnight soaked oats?
    Any advice is appreciated, thanks!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Hi Marcus, great question! I think it’s safer to cook it. I have never just soaked it, so I would advise against it. If you try it you’ll have to come back and let me know if it worked out!

  5. Ashley says:

    Completely not the point, but I love how beautifully sliced all your fruits are! Did you do that by hand, use a mandolin, or something else? It just makes such a pretty presentation that I would love to duplicate. Oh, and the recipe is definitely worth adding to your breakfast meal options. I have eaten oatmeal my whole life and this is a very welcome change!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Hi Ashley! Thank you so much! Yep – I used a mandolin to get the precise cuts on the fruit. You do have to use a firmer peach or banana so it doesn’t mush into the blade. If you have Instagram, I’d love to see your bowl when you’re done! Just tag me @feelgoodfoodie!

  6. L says:

    I love this idea. Can’t wait to try it out.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you! Can’t wait to hear what you think!

  7. Jenna says:

    I tried fallowing the microwave instructions and it failed. I used the biggest microwave safe bowl I have and it completely boiled over. Don’t fallow the microwave instructions they don’t work.

    1. Yumna J. says:

      In that case, you may need to stir and return to the microwave more often (e.g. every minute).

      1. Marian Geerling says:

        I agree. What a horrible mess. I use 2% milk not almond milk. I did it stovetop, added a pinch of nutmeg, about 1 tsp ground ginger. I use stevia (approx 1-1/2 tsp) rather than maple syrup. Added craisins & sliced almonds. Heaven in a bowl!

        1. Yumna Jawad says:

          So glad you enjoyed! Love those toppings!

    2. Leah says:

      Argh, I wished I had read this comment before putting it in the microwave! What a mess to clean up. Salvaged quinoa is currently on the stop top….

    3. Leah says:

      That was meant to say stove top….

      Anyway, all worked out well in the end. Coconut milk, maple and cinnamon – yummo!

      1. Yumna Jawad says:

        I’m glad you enjoyed!

  8. Natasha de Sousa says:

    I made this recipe this morning and it was delicious! I used red quinoa so had to let it cook an extra 7 mins. Instead of using 2 cups of almond milk, I used 1 cup of coconut milk and 1 cup of almond milk because I like some good fats in the morning. I topped it with the recommended bananas, cinnamon, hemp seeds, walnuts and added some cashew butter. As Yumna always say, “ soooo good”!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      I’m so glad to hear it! Haha, thank you!!

  9. Jia says:

    I made this with red quinoa. It was so good and a good change from regular porridge! Thanks for the recipe!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Most welcome! I’m glad you could switch it up!

  10. Gina says:

    Can this quinoa oatmeal be made like regular quinoa to eat like rice at dinner time?

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Yes, absolutely!

    2. Gina says:

      Does it taste good like plain quinoa without the sugar? Do you just mix with water or milk?

  11. Emma Thompson says:

    Just made this recipe, absolutely delicious.
    I used homemade almond milk and did need an extra half cup.
    Toasting the quinoa first makes such a difference to taste.
    Hoping I have the will power to keep some for breakfast in the morning.
    Amazing with yogurt and a sprinkle of toasted almonds.
    Thank you.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Aww I’m so glad to hear that you enjoyed the quinoa oatmeal. Thanks so much for sharing!

  12. Venetta A Smith says:

    You can toast the quinoa when it’s still damp after rinsing? Or does it have to dry first?

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Either way works fine! You can toast it faster if it’s dry but it will still toast fine if it’s lightly damp.

  13. Megan says:

    As a college student I try to spread any food I make or buy over a few days. Would you say that this can be put in the fridge and reheated (or eaten cold) within a few days? Or does it have to all be eaten when you make it?

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Hi Megan – You can definitely store it for up to 5 days in the fridge and reheat it. I would add a splash of milk or water to it so it’s not too dry, but I do this all the time!

  14. Georgiana says:

    Is this recipe supposed to be served warm or cold?

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Ideally it’s served warm, but you can certainly enjoy it cold as well 🙂

      1. Zara says:

        Hi there. Can you use quinoa for overnight oats? For example, follow the above recipe then leave in the fridge and eat over a few days?

        1. Yumna Jawad says:

          Yes, you can do that too!

  15. Amy says:

    Yum! Can I use coconut milk instead?

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you! And yes, absolutely, coconut milk will work great 🙂