Quinoa with blueberries is the perfect breakfast for me and it is gluten-free too. Many of my patients have gluten intolerance so I often make up gluten-free recipes for them. Many years ago I made this quinoa with blueberry breakfast recipe, then I started to eat it myself and before I knew I preferred it to any other breakfast. In fact I never get tired of it and I am still eating it every morning. This breakfast gives me such a sustenance that I am fine until lunch time and I don’t need any snacks in between breakfast and lunch. After this delicious breakfast I often enjoy my skin glowing chai tea which gives me extra glow for the day!
There is a tradition in Iceland to pick your own wild blueberries and bilberries and preserve them for winter. As I child I picked berries every autumn so it became the tradition for me to do. I always freeze the berries and use them frozen for this quinoa breakfast. If I haven’t been able to pick enough to last me through winter I will use goji berries instead. Blueberries and bilberries are super healthy food, they are packed with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties as well as being high in vitamins. Wild blueberries or bilberries are considerably more sour than store bought blueberries so you might not need to add any sweetener like I do. I highly recommend you buy organically certified blueberries if you can since lot of pesticides are used on normal blueberries and those pesticides are definitely not good for your health.
Wild Icelandic Bilberries (I ate them all after taking this photo)
- 4 tbsp quinoa
- 1/2-1 tsp cinnamon
- 3 dl (1 1/2 cup) water
- 1 dl (1/2 cup) blueberries or 1/2 dl goji berries
- 1 tbsp flax seeds
- 1/2-1 tsp unsalted butter (or olive oil if vegan)
- 1/-1 tsp raw honey (or maple syrup if vegan)
- Put the quinoa, water and flax seeds in a bowl to soak over night. If you are using goji berries then include them as well. If you want to skip the soaking, add about 5 minutes to the cooking time.
- Next morning pour the ingredients into a saucepan, add cinnamon and salt and simmer on low heat without the lid for about 10-15 minutes.
- At the end add the blueberries and heat for another half a minute.
- Pour the porridge into a bowl and add the butter (or olive oil) and honey and stir.
I don’t find it necessary to use any milk with this porridge but if you do I recommend plant based milk like oat milk or almond milk.
Anna Rósa is a medical herbalist and author of the bestselling book Icelandic Herbs and Their Medicinal Uses. She is the founder of Anna Rósa Skincare and a member of the National Institute of Medical Herbalists in UK, which is the oldest herbalist institute in the world, founded in 1894.