Foolproof Lime Cumin Quinoa

First things first. I’m so totally psyched about being selected as Foodista’s Featured Blog of the Day for May 1! These things add to the joy of writing and it’s really great to see the likes and comments and pins from so many people about a recipe I made up.

Today I’m sharing my Foolproof Lime Cumin Quinoa with all of you. I recall finding a similar recipe on some random site a while back, but over the years I’ve customized it and made it my own. This is my go-to quinoa recipe because it is SO easy to put together and can be eaten hot or cold. I also love it because it contains two ingredients that make me finally understand that odd *Nsync song “I knew I loved you before I met you” – the lime/cumin combo & quinoa (which I embarrassingly called “Quinn-oh-na” for a long time).

I never actually knew that lime and cumin worked so well together. I grew up in a family & general society that only uses cumin (also known as geera) in indian cooking – curry, dhal, naan, rice, etc. I didn’t realize there was a whole other world out there and was shocked that it took me so long to discover it. With quinoa though, I think that you either love it or hate it. I loved it right away. I’m not really a rice person, so using quinoa as a replacement most of the time wasn’t a big deal for me. My sister and brother actively curse quinoa and cous cous and tell them to “be real food!”

The beauty of this recipe is that it is super flexible, so add or remove the veggies you want. The quinoa can take it. You can also eat this salad hot or cold, as a side or main dish, all ways are equally delicious. This is one of those recipes that make you think “hmm will this be enough for me?”, but by the time you’re finished adding your cooked quinoa and adding all your ingredients, you have way more than enough for a couple of meals. Which is a plus because the quinoa absorbs the flavours beautifully. In fact, make this in the the evening before for lunch and dinner the next day. You won’t regret it.

Also, I’m seeing that there’s a Lime shortage in the US due to a huge crop destruction in Mexico, so if you must prioritize your lime related meals, I’d put Tacos first (always tacos first), this Quinoa and then Tequila / Margaritas. That’s just me though. Tequila and I aren’t friends anymore and I don’t even speak to Margarita now. I don’t want you guys to feel like you have to pick sides in this breakup, but let’s just say I’ve had bad experiences with both of them. Also, my Mom follows this blog so let’s not get into any further discussion as to why we fell out. Hi Mom!

Foolproof Lime Cumin Quinoa

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


¾ cup Quinoa, dried
½ cup Black Beans, cooked
½ Bell Pepper, diced, any colour or a combination
2 small Tomatoes, sliced
1/2 cup Corn
¼ cup chopped Shallots

Juice of 2 medium Limes (about 1/3 cup)
2 tsp Cumin, ground
1 tbsp + 1 tsp Olive Oil
¾ tsp Salt
Black Pepper

Cook Quinoa according to package directions. Usually the ratio is 1 part Quinoa to 2 parts Water. Cook until water is absorbed and the little white string things in each grain pops out from the grains. Let cool slightly.

While the quinoa is cooking, whisk Vinaigrette ingredients until thoroughly combined. Add all other ingredients to cooked quinoa along with vinaigrette and stir until combined. Refrigerate overnight to allow flavours to absorb. Serve hot or cold.


I admit, I took about 10 of the same picture and maybe one more and that was it. Sorry. You know what black beans and sliced tomatoes look like. Also, that’s how easy this recipe is – you don’t even have many photo ops! I’m bringing this to Fiesta Friday and I had a great time hosting last week. Thanks again to Angie & Prudy.

So that’s my bit for today. Have a fabulous weekend! We have a long weekend and I’m making cupcakes for a bake sale. It’s my first official ‘job’ so I’ve been using my lovely friends as cupcake guinea pigs (sorry guys lol) while simultaneously trying to ignore the likelihood that my poor art grades in high school will impact the overall beauty of the cupcake. Wish me luck and check me out on Instagram next week for the final product!


  1. Girl, you are hilarious. I can always count on a brighter day when I stop by your blog. I love quinoa, and even though I grew up eating rice for every meal, I now choose quinoa over rice any day. Load up veggies on top and I’m good. I love the lime and cumin combo and must try it someday. I bet it’s really tasty! Happy Friday and good luck on those cupcakes! (Oh wait, were those the chocolate ones on Instagram? Yum!)

    • Thanks Ngan…I’m glad that I can brighten your day, I’m extremely flattered 🙂 Yep, those were the test run cupcakes on Instagram…I find I’m getting pretty obsessed with Instagram now lol. I know I had said I don’t use filters on my food and I’m trying to stick to that for this blog when I put actual recipes, but filters are so cool! My compromise is only instagram so let’s see how that goes 🙂

      • Instagram filters are really fun! I think you should go crazy with them and experiment. I tend not to use the different filters anymore, opting instead for the newer brightness and contrast tools, but I do love to use the LoFi filter – so moody!

      • I have SO many photo editing apps on my phone right now its ridiculous. I usually stick with the simple ones, but I’m getting more adventurous now lol

  2. Oh wow, Indira! I love quinoa and cumin and lime, so I guess that your recipe was meant for me!! 😀 This is a beautiful recipe and I’m so glad your brought it to FF! Also, thanks so much for co-hosting last week! You are awesome and you know how to work the crowd!! Don’t you think this is the most amazing blog party on the blogosphere?

  3. Haven’t tried cumin and lime together, but I bet it sounds good by the way you describe it. This dish looks really good, Indira. Thank you for bringing it to FF! Have a pleasant weekend! 🙂

    • Thanks Jhuls :). It really is surprisingly good and I hope you get a chance to try it soon. I’m so behind on commenting this week, so I’ll be visiting you soon to see what you’ve brought!

      • The past two weeks have been very busy. I hope I will find time to post what is pending this week and do my WP duties. 😛 Hope you have a pleasant week.

  4. Yay, many congratulations on being selected as Foodista’s blog of the day! I loved your avocado cream pie, the recognition is well deserved! 🙂
    I also haven’t tried lime and cumin together, though I’ve added lemon to dishes with cumin. You’ve given me a new flavour combination to try on the weekend, thanks! And thanks for bringing this beautiful bowl of goodness to Fiesta Friday! 😀

    • Aw thank you! 🙂 It was fun to create and really encouraging…I love cookbooks and the satisfaction of executing a recipe perfectly, but I’m starting to feel the joy of creating something and having it come out so great. Let me know how your lime/cumin combo turns out, I would love to use it in other dishes!

  5. Lime and cumin….. what’s not to like? These flavors definitely go together, this looks like something I’m going to have to try for sure, now that the warmer weather has surfaced. Thanks!

  6. This looks like a great meal for one of my sunny days if we get one…table out in the garden, lots of salad and one of the other wonderful meat recipes i find on here with this, thank you for sharing x

  7. Great dish, Indira! I’ve used lime and cumin together in Mexican dishes, and you’re right…it’s a great combination. This kind of does lean to that type of cuisine with the corn, black beans and tomatoes. It not only looks delicious, it’s healthy, too! Bonus points. 😉

    • Yep Nancy, you’re right…I can easily see myself adding some avocado or putting it in a taco lol. I really need to detox so I’m happy about the veggie / protein / grain ratio here.

  8. Wonderful combination of ingredients Indira! I have never tried making anything with quinoa. But i think it is high time dat i try it out. And this recipe looks good. 🙂

    • Thanks Sadia! I definitely find it easier to cook than rice honestly. I think its because I don’t need a colander or anything which means less dishes to wash lol. Also just a tip – dry toast the quinoa in the pan for a few minutes before you add the water…it gives it a nuttier flavour.

    • Thanks! I love corn actually and can eat it straight out the tin when I open one lol…I find it adds that sweet bite without being overwhelming. Thanks for stopping by!

  9. Now you’ve given me the option of adding citrus to cumin, as I’ve never liked cumin and lemon together. Partly as lemons here in the UK are imported and usually quite tart. Will definitely have to try this lime combo. And as I have leftovers for tomorrow that has cumin in it, along with bought limes earlier today, that should make for a nice lunch. Oh, and I used to pronounce quinoa like that as well. And it’s something I’ve yet to try.

    • I think that my pronunciation sounded more fun lol. I find that usually I prefer lemons because the limes are a bit too tart, but not when paired with cumin. I think it brings out the flavour and tempers it if that even makes sense. I hope you try it and like it. Thanks also for hosting FF, its a lot of work but also fun, isn’t it? 🙂

  10. Limes were super expensive at the grocery store the other day! I’d love to try this dish, so I might prioritize it above tacos (crazy, I know!). Love your sense of humor, and this meal looks delicious! Pinned it and excited to try it out this summer 🙂

    • Aw thank you! I won’t judge you for putting my recipe above tacos…I welcome it actually :). I hope you like it and hope that the lime shortage ends soon! Thanks for stopping by.

  11. Made it – love it! forgot that I used my black beans for a bean salad but it was delicious anyway – will post my efforts soon 🙂

  12. I wouldn’t have thought to pair lime and cumin together either, but this looks fantastic!! Thanks for helping me figure out what’s for dinner tonight! 🙂

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