Quinoa Gado Gado

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1/2 cup white or red quinoa (well rinsed and drained)

  • 1 cup water

  • 1 cup greens beans (trimmed)

  • 1/2 medium red bell pepper (thinly sliced)

  • 3/4 cup mung bean sprouts

  • 2/3 cup thinly shredded red cabbage

  • 2 whole carrots (thinly sliced with a knife or mandolin)


  • 1/3 cup salted creamy peanut butter (or sub almond butter, cashew butter, or sunbutter)

  • 1 Tbsp gluten-free tamari (or soy sauce if not GF)

  • 2-3 Tbsp maple syrup (to taste)

  • 3 Tbsp lime juice

  • 1 tsp chili garlic sauce (more to taste // 1 Thai red chili, minced // or 1/4 tsp red pepper flake // amounts as original recipe is written)

  • 3-4 Tbsp water (to thin)

FOR SERVING optional

  • Cilantro

  • Lime wedges

  • Red pepper flake


  1. Heat a small saucepan over medium heat and add rinsed, drained quinoa. "Toast" for 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently, to remove excess liquid and add a nutty flavor to the quinoa. Then add water, stir, and bring to a low boil. Then reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 18-20 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed and quinoa is tender. Fluff with a fork, remove lid, and set off heat.

  2. While quinoa is cooking, steam green beans until just tender. You can do this either in the microwave (covered, in 1-minute increments) or by placing green beans in a steamer basket inside a large saucepan filled with 1 inch of water. Bring the water to a simmer on medium-high heat, cover, and cook until just tender - about 4 minutes.

  3. Once steamed, add green beans to a bowl of ice water to "shock" them (stop them from cooking). Set aside.

  4. Make peanut sauce by adding peanut butter, tamari, maple syrup, lime juice, and chili garlic sauce/Thai chili/red pepper flake to a small mixing bowl and whisking to combine. Then add water 1 Tbsp (15 ml) at a time until a semi-thick but pourable sauce is formed.

  5. Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more tamari for saltiness, lime juice for acidity, maple syrup for sweetness, or chili garlic sauce/Thai chili/red pepper flake for heat! You want this to be a balance of tangy, sweet, salty, and spicy, so don't be shy with the seasonings!

  6. To serve, divide quinoa between 2 serving bowls (as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) and top with green beans, red bell pepper, mung bean sprouts, and carrots. Serve with peanut sauce and any additional toppings (optional), such as cilantro, lime wedges, and red pepper flake.

  7. Store leftovers separately in the refrigerator up to 4-5 days (peanut sauce keeps for 1+ week). Best when fresh.

Robert Brown