Southwestern Quinoa with Corn, Black Beans and Poblano


Quinoa is considered a superfood because of its nutritional value, but it's also an incredibly versatile base for just about any flavor profile. This Southwest-inspired dish features corn, black beans, and a spicy poblano pepper. It can be served chilled, as a salad, and also makes a great side for grilled meats. For an extra kick, garnish with chili flakes. Slideshow:  Southwestern Recipes 

Southwestern Quinoa with Corn, Black Beans, and Poblano
Photo: © Emily Farris
Total Time:
30 mins


  • 2 cups quinoa, rinsed and drained

  • 1 cup diced white onion

  • 4 cups water

  • Kosher salt

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 15-ounce can of black beans, drained and rinsed

  • The corn of one peak-season cob (or 1 15-ounce can, drained and rinsed)

  • 1 medium poblano pepper, seeds removed, finely chopped

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder

  • Freshly ground black pepper

  • Crumbled queso fresco, for garnish


  1. In a medium pot over high heat, bring the quinoa, onion, water and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt to a rolling boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat to low, and simmer until the quinoa has fully absorbed the water, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside. (If serving cold, chill the quinoa in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before tossing with the other ingredients.)

  2. In a serving bowl, toss the quinoa with the olive oil, black beans, corn, poblano, cumin, chili powder, and salt and pepper to taste. Serve as a salad or a side, and top each serving with a tablespoon of crumbled queso fresco.

Make Ahead

The quinoa can be made a day ahead and refrigerated.

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