Moroccan Quinoa and Carrots – and Olive Oil Giveaway!

January 7, 2011  •  Beans & Grains, Salads, Side Dishes, Vegetables

I get so excited each month when it’s time to give away a bottle of Italian extra virgin olive oil from my friends and sponsors at Gourmet Cooking & Living. It’s a chance to create a recipe where the oil will shine, not where it’s just some basic ingredient to saute the onions. This is one of those recipes, and I encourage you to use the very best olive oil you can find to make this dish. Better yet, tell me any goals or resolutions you made for the new year by commenting below and you could win a free bottle!Although you might have been confused by my pork cracklin’s post, I’m trying to eat a bit healthier and lose a few pounds before I have to get into a bathing suit on my husband’s company trip in a few weeks. For me, eating healthy means incorporating more whole grains and vegetables – but it’s gotta taste good or I give up quickly!Quinoa is kind of a superfood – it has more protein than any other grain and was part of the staple diet of the ancient Incas. Rinse it several times before you cook it to remove any bitter taste.Because we’re right in the middle of the winter share distribution from my CSA farm, I’m up to my eyeballs in carrots. I just don’t crave carrots, but rather like them with other flavors.So I tossed them in some of the olive oil and roasted them to take on some nice caramelization.Then I added in some chopped cilantro……a good amount of the dried mint I harvested from my alley this fall, some orange juice, minced garlic, and some Moroccan kind of spices. I tossed everything together with the cooked quinoa……and dressed everything in this fabulous olive oil from Gourmet Cooking & Living’s Olive Oil of the Month Club. I’m trying to watch my calories, so I only used a little, but add all you like to develop the flavor you’re looking for. This is both healthy and delicious – my husband even ate it, and he’s picky!

Moroccan Quinoa and Carrots
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
May be served warm, room temperature, or cold.
Recipe type: Salad,Side Dish
Serves: 4
  • ½ cup quinoa, soaked and rinsed
  • 1 cup water, or stock
  • 4 large carrots, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon agave nectar
  • 1 whole orange, juiced
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon dried mint flakes
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Combine quinoa and water in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cook until evaporated and quinoa is fluffy, about 45 minutes. Meanwhile, toss sliced carrots with 1 tablespoon of the oil and roast at 400 degrees until cooked and caramelized. Combine all remaining ingredients together and whisk until incorporated, then toss with cooked carrots and quinoa.

Don’t forget to comment below about your resolutions – winner of the olive oil giveaway will be picked at 5pm Denver time on Monday!


8 Comments  •  Comments Feed

  1. Rike says:

    This looks great! I love quinoa.
    I have no new New Year resolutions! I will continue to try to cook healthy and good tasting meals, and quinoa is one of my pantry stables.
    Thank you for sharing your recipes.

  2. Dawn Nowak says:

    Besides resolving to live in the moment and to have no foods on my forbidden list, my other resolution is to use more olive oil instead of butter: in homemade salad dressings, dips, and on toast, to fry my over easy or scrambled egg, to coat my grilled cheese & quesadillas!

  3. Amy Engel says:

    Ok I have loved everything I’ve made from your recipes so can’t wait to try this one! Looks great! I’ll let you know.


  4. Lisa stover says:

    I’ve resolved to eat only planned meals and snacks … No more mindless nibbling!!
    P.S. I’m almost out of olive oil 🙂

  5. Nan says:

    I am resolving to learn to make 4 new healthy salmon meals and 4 new vegetarian dishes. I am the only one in my home that doesn’t really care for salmon or vegetables, but I know salmon is healthy. So, no more giving up on Salmon! And no more giving up on vegetables! These meals have to be easy, healthy, and standard go-to meals.
    And thanks for the quinoa and carrot dish – I too am up to my eyeballs in carrots and I love quinoa.

  6. Jason Smith says:

    I’m teaming up with you tomorrow to teach at the Synergy Cafe, and I wanted to get an insight into your cooking style. Well, I’m blessed to say that this Moroccan dish is right up my ally as I have Celiac disease and often find myself searching for good recipes using Quinoa, being completely Gluten Free of course. Wow….this tasted amazing. I teamed it with some broiled Mahi Mahi and it paired magnificently. I did have to use some lower quality Olive Oil(Now brand)but the dish still went down without a hitch….I can’t wait to meet you tomorrow and experience more of your tantilizing, mouth watering talents!

    Thank you for the enlightening meal!

    Kind Regards,

    Jason C. Smith
    Nutrition Educator – Cooking Matters

  7. Sharon says:

    This dish sounds wonderful. 🙂

    My resolution is to do more of what I plan on doing, instead of “putting it off till a better time”. That ‘better time’ is usually now.

    /the olive oil looks yum!

  8. Kelsey says:

    My New Year’s resolution is to be more timely! Also… to continue my gym streak (been going 4 times a week since October… woohoo!). Finally, I want to continue to eat well and cook healthy meals… which is why I love your blog 🙂