Crockpot Chicken and Red Quinoa

I have been making my Crockpot Chicken and Quinoa recipe every single Sunday for weeks now (it has to be a record, I just don’t do that). I think it’s both the simplicity of the recipe, the use of the crockpot, and, of course, the taste that draws me back to it every week.

For the original recipe, I tried to encouraged you to play around with the recipe to use what you had on hand and to meet your taste buds approval. While I have been doing it pretty much the same way this whole time, I thought I was take my own advice and mix things up a little.

I have been wanting to try out red quinoa, which has a beautiful red color, so I figured this was my chance. I took out the celery and added in more carrots and the result was so pretty! The red quinoa and the carrots complemented each other wonderfully. We found that it took a little longer to cook, for some reason. I also had a little trouble getting my onion to cook all the way. This was puzzling because I had made it just the same all the other times, and it had been just fine. Then I realized that this onion was on the bottom of a five pound bag, and was a lot older than the other ones I used. So, if you are afraid of this happening to you, I would recommend cooking your onion a little in some butter or oil on the stove top first and then adding it to the crockpot.

The other difference we noted with the red quinoa is that it had a little more texture to it. It didn’t get quite so mushy as the regular quinoa and the grains remained more separate. This made this dish much more like a soup or stew, as you can probably see in the picture. Compare it to the picture for regular Crockpot Chicken and Quinoa and you will see what I mean.

It’s also important to note that since this is a simple recipe, you should use high quality ingredients because they will have nothing to hide behind. Fresh produce (not old onions like mine!), homemade chicken broth, a wine that you would be willing to drink on it’s own, and good quality chicken, will make all the difference in the world.

If you are wondering why I use some broth and some water, it’s because the chicken makes it’s own broth as it cooks. But if you are worried about not getting enough flavor because you are using a store bought broth, or a weak homemade broth, by all means, use all broth instead.

My husband thought that mushrooms would be delicious in this, and I thought that it could easily become more substantial by adding in peas, corn, mushrooms and even cabbage! Once again, play around with it. It’s a very forgiving recipe. If you add in more veggies, you may want to increase your broth as well.

Crockpot Red Quinoa and Chicken (soup)

1 cup RED quinoa (soaked overnight in water, than drained and rinsed in a strainer. If you don’t soak your grains, still rinse to remove a bitter substance from the grain)
2 cups of chicken broth
3/4 cup of white wine (don’t use cooking wine, use REAL drinking wine)
2 cups of water
2 teaspoons dried thyme
1 teaspoon of salt
6 large carrots, peeled and cubed
1 onion, minced
2 chicken breasts or thighs
3 Tablespoons of butter (opt, for added richness and taste)

Throw all the ingredients in your crockpot, cook on high for about 4 hours or on low, 8. Shred the chicken when done, and stir into the stew and you are done!

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I love beautiful and simple food that is nourishing to the body and the soul. I wrote Fresh: Nourishing Salads for All Seasons and Ladled: Nourishing Soups for All Seasons as another outlet of sharing this love of mine. I also love sharing practical tips on how to make a real food diet work on a real life budget. Find me online elsewhere by clicking on the icons below!

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  1. Lylah says

    stephanie at keeper of the home is right…this looks fantastic. what a great thing you’ve got going here.

    blessings and i’ll come back1 lylah

  2. Kimi Harris says

    Mrs. U,
    You can use chicken broth, it just won’t have the same amount of flavor.

    You could consider using a few tablespoons of vinegar plus broth to equal the 3/4 of a cup of wine. The vinegar will give it a punch of flavor 🙂

  3. Mrs. U says

    Wonderful idea, Kimi!! Thank you!! Now… I just need to see if my local health store carries red quinoa and I’m good to go!! 🙂 This just makes my mouth water thinking about this recipe! 🙂

    Mrs. U

  4. Mrs. U says

    I found quinoa, but they did not carry the red quinoa. Is there a big difference in taste? I do want to make this dish, but it may not have the same flavor yours does.

    Mrs. U

  5. Kimi Harris says

    Mrs. U,
    Actually, this was the first time I used red quinoa! If you scroll down, you will see my original post where I used regular quinoa. It had a slightly different texture, and the red grain didn’t get quite as mushed together, but we like it made with either. 🙂

  6. Holly says

    I would like to make this recipe– my husband and I LOVE quinoa! However, we do not have a crock pot. How can I make this one the stove?

  7. KimiHarris says

    Hi Holly,

    It’s super easy to make on the stove top. I add a bit of olive oil on the bottom of a large soup pot, sweat my onions, carrots (and celery, if you like) with a bit of salt in it until soft. Then I put the rest of the ingredients in, and bring to a low simmer. Cook for about, oh, I would say 30-45 minutes, until everything is very tender. We just made this with celery and mushrooms added in and it was very yummy that way! 🙂

  8. says

    The Nourishing Gourmet has been picked and featured as the Best of the Web on the Worthington Wire. You will see your article linked in the recipes category today.

    Feel free to grab a badge to show off that you were featured on the Worthington Wire.

    Congrats on the feature!

    KH: Thanks for letting me know! ! That’s exciting! 🙂

  9. says

    Yumm! I just bought a really nice looking crockpot at a neighbor’s garage sale this morning for only $2 and thought to look online for healthy recipes… this looks like just what I was looking for! Thanks so much!

  10. says

    Wow. I left my computer for a bit, my kids bashed keys and some how this popped up! I love it. I am so going to try this.

    You have an amazing site. Can’t wait to try more of your recipes. Thanks so much.

  11. Sarah says

    I made this and wasnt sure how much it makes I used my 4.5 Qt crockpot and it was just the right size.
    I brought it in for a potluck dinner and it was a big hit!

  12. Jackie E says

    I tried this recipe and used 1 cup red quinoa @ 1 cup wild rice. I also used apple cidr vinegar in place of the white wine. It turned out fabulous!

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