Quinoa (pronounced Keen-wa) is a traditional South American staple. It cooks in minutes and can be used in a wide range of recipes including risotto and pilafs. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization designate quinoa as a super food. Quinoa: South American Super food There are approximately 120 species of quinoa, with differing colours. Nutritionally red and white quinoa are very similar. Quinoa has a balanced set of amino acids, making it one of the rare complete plant proteins, with 12 b 18% protein. It's also a source of dietary fiber, protein and iron. An excellent choice for vegans and vegetarians, quinoa, is rich in calcium, iron, phosphorous and several B vitamins. Quinoa is naturally gluten-free. Tasty Tips and Storage Quinoa cooks up in minutes with a fluffy, slightly crunchy texture. Enjoy it in a wide range of recipes including salads and pilafs, as a rice alternative with stir fries. Kids love quinoa, and it can work well in wraps also. Basic cooking instructions: One cup quinoa to 1 1/2 cups water is the best ratio. Bring the water to boil, add the quinoa, reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook for 15-20 minutes or until the water is absorbed. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 5 minutes to steam. Uncooked quinoa has a long shelf life if stored properly it can be stored for up to 3 years in a cool, dry place in an airtight container.