One Pan Tex-Mex Quinoa
Yield: 4 servings
Pantry staples make this filling, flavorful, plant-based meal a weeknight win – and there's no need to pre-cook the quinoa. 

If using frozen corn, it need not be thawed. Simply add it to the colander and rinse along with the beans.


  • 1 tablespoon (14ml) olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced (about 1 cup)
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 cup (188g) quinoa, rinsed and well drained
  • 1 cup (240ml) chicken broth (sub vegetable broth for vegetarian or vegan meal)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes with green chilies or fire-roasted tomatoes, with juice
  • 1 cup corn kernels, frozen, canned, or fresh
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper (I use about ¾ and ¼ teaspoon, respectively)
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) freshly squeezed lime juice (plus optional wedges for serving)
  • Optional toppings/extras: 1 avocado, diced or sliced; a handful of tortilla chips, crumbled; ¾-1 cup shredded cheddar or Mexican blend cheese; a handful of cherry or grape tomatoes, quartered; 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves, or more to taste


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large (10- to 12-inch), lidded skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until softened and lightly golden, 3-4 minutes. Stir in the chili powder, cumin, and coriander, and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 1 minute.
    Stir in the quinoa and sauté for a minute or so, stirring to coat with the spices. Add the broth, beans, tomatoes, and corn; season with salt and pepper, to taste. (I add ¾ of a teaspoon of kosher salt and ¼ teaspoon of pepper.) Bring the mixture to a boil, and then cover and reduce the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook until the quinoa is just tender, about 20 minutes. (Taste for doneness a few minutes early and allow for an extra few minutes depending on precise level of heat.)
    Finishing touches: Stir in the lime juice and optional cilantro, and adjust salt and pepper to taste. If using, sprinkle with the cheese and replace the lid for a minute or two to melt. Sprinkle with other toppings of choice, or allow diners to add their favorites upon serving.
    Storage: Leftovers will keep for up to 5 days in the refrigerator and the flavor improves with age. Feel free to add an extra squeeze of lime juice too. If you expect leftovers, for best texture I recommend adding the avocado and tortilla chips to individual servings only.


• Add crunch: My family loves to eat this dish topped with crumbled tortilla chips or served with a handful of whole chips for scooping. The last time we ate this meal, my husband suggested serving the quinoa over a bed of crumbled chips or in a taco bowl–which made me think of serving it on a tostada, perhaps with a layer of refried beans or guacamole underneath.
• Like garlic? Add 2 minced cloves garlic along with the spices.
• Not an onion fan? The onion adds good flavor, but you may omit if not a fan or in a hurry. Alternatively, you could sprinkle the finished dish with sliced green onions.
• Want to spice it up? Add 1 minced jalapeño or serrano pepper (I seed and devein half for a medium level of spiciness) along with the spices. Alternatively, you could add ⅛-¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper with the other spices, garnish with thinly sliced hot peppers, or serve with hot sauce on the side.
• Looking to increase veggies? Sauté some diced bell pepper along with the onion and/or include a variety of the optional toppings, like fresh tomatoes and avocado.

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