One of favorite new finds this year has been the Seeds of Change quinoa and brown rice with garlic. The ingredients are low, it’s super easy to cook, and it’s delicious! As with all prepackaged foods, the brown rice and quinoa blend has a decent amount of sodium in it. Once I realized how easy it is to make this copycat recipe at home, I had to share it with you all.
The homemade version of this popular side dish is great to make in batches and keep in the freezer, and is so much cheaper than the store bought version. I used my Ninja Foodi to make this dish, but you can also use an Instant Pot or other electric pressure cooker.
Like I mentioned, this is one of our favorite healthy side dishes. I love that it was so easy to make–it’s just a few simple ingredients!
Ingredients in this delicious and healthy side dish:
- dry brown rice (short grain)
- dry red quinoa
- fresh garlic, minced
- salt (optional)
- olive oil
- water or vegetable broth
How to make Copycat Quinoa and Brown Rice in the electric pressure cooker:
This recipe takes about 40 minutes from start to finish.
1. Rinse your quinoa and brown rice. Spray inside of pot with olive oil to prevent sticking.
2. Add rice, quinoa, garlic, water, olive oil, and (optional) salt to the pot.
3. Set the pressure cooker for 18 minutes on high pressure.
4. Allow the pressure to naturally release for 5 minutes, then quick release the rest of the steam. Add salt and pepper, if you’d like.
It’s easy to spice this dish up a bit! Add red pepper flakes, roasted garlic, or lemon juice or lemon zest to give this side dish a fun flavor twist.
This is a copycat recipe because it’s made at home, but tastes exactly like the store bought product. If you’re looking for some other delicious copycat recipes of both store bought products and your favorite restaurant recipes, I’ve pulled some together for you!
- Tuscan Chicken Pasta from Olive Garden
- Bang Bang Shrimp Pasta from The Cheesecake Factory
- Microwave Egg Scrambles like Just Crack an Egg Cups
- Cauliflower Fried Rice from Panda Express (I swapped cauliflower for rice)
- Egg Bites from Starbucks
Are quinoa and brown rice gluten free?
Both quinoa and brown rice are gluten free, but make sure that the product ensures that it was grown in a field that had not previously grown products with gluten in them.
Are quinoa and brown rice healthy?
Yes! There are several health benefits of each.
Quinoa is high in protein and fiber, and is one of the only products that contains all nine of the essential amino acids. Quinoa is technically a seed, but it’s cooked like we cook grains.
Brown rice is high in fiber, which helps to lower cholesterol. It is considered to be a whole grain, making it a healthier choice because the bran and germ of the rice stay intact (they are packed with nutrients). White rice isn’t a whole grain because the hull (the hard shell), bran and germ are removed during processing.
Is this quinoa and brown rice blend healthier than the store bought Seeds of Change brand?
It is. Like I mentioned above, the Seeds of Change brand (and the new Costco brand recently seen on shelves) is pretty healthy for a prepackaged product. But it’s also expensive and simply because it’s store bought, it contains added sodium and preservatives.
Here’s a comparison between this recipe and the store bought version:
Seeds of Change Quinoa & Brown Rice:
Per 1/2 cup serving, 120 calories, 1.6 grams of fat, 200 mg sodium, 23 carbs, and 3 g of protein.
This healthy Copycat Brown Rice & Quinoa:
Per 1/2 cup serving, 120 calories, 2 grams of fat, 65 mg sodium, 22 carbs, and 3 grams of protein.
Using this easy recipe saves you a ton of sodium (and money too!). If I’m lucky, I can find the store bought version of this product for 2/$4.
One batch (ten 1/2 cup servings) of this recipe costs $2.10. One bag (four 1/2 cup servings) of the store bought blend costs $2.79.
What should I serve with this Brown Rice & Quinoa blend?
There are so many options for eating this delicious dish! I’ve put it on top of a salad, used it as a side with this Orange Chicken recipe, and eaten it as a side when I’m making a quick bento box lunch and need a protein/carb! Grilled chicken, homemade rotisserie chicken, or even as a side for these Greek Kabobs!
Looking for stovetop directions?
Though I’ve been wanting to make this dish in my dutch oven, I haven’t yet. Maybe because it’s so darn easy in the electric pressure cooker?
If you’d like to make this recipe on the stove, head over to my friends at Homemade Food Junkie for directions.
Special Diet Information for this side dish:
21 Day Fix:
1/2 cup of this dish is 1 yellow container
1/2 cup of this dish is 3 Freestyle SmartPoints
Trim Healthy Mama:
For THM, the small amount of olive oil makes this a great THM-E recipe.
Copycat Brown Rice and Quinoa Blend
- Electric Pressure Cooker
- 1 cup short grain brown rice dry
- 1 cup red quinoa dry
- 3 tbsp garlic minced
- 1.5 tsp olive oil
- 2 cups water
Optional: salt to taste
- Rinse your quinoa and brown rice. Spray inside of pot with olive oil to prevent sticking.
- Add rice, quinoa, garlic, water, olive oil, and (optional) salt to the pot.
- Set the pressure cooker for 18 minutes on high pressure.
- Allow dish to naturally release for 5 minutes, then quick release the rest of the steam.