Quinoa, Leek, and Corn Chowder - Eating Bird Food

Quinoa, Leek, and Corn Chowder

Hi friends, I’m glad you liked the tips on healthy eating during the holidays. I enjoyed reading everyone’s tips in the comment section.

Speaking of eating healthy, a little while ago I received Quinoa 365: The Everyday Superfood by Patricia Green and Carolyn Hemming to review. Being semi obsessed with all things quinoa, I was incredibly excited to see an entire cookbook dedicated to the tiny, protein packed pseudograin. I bookmarked several recipes and finally got around to making one of them this week – Quinoa, Leek, and Corn Chowder!


I’d never had quinoa in a soup before and let’s just say it’s nothing short of amazing. The blended quinoa made this broth based chowder both creamy and thick without a drop of dairy. Needless to say, I was impressed!


Since the chowder had 3 cups of corn, I thought it would be perfect served with pumpkin cornbread. I like corn with my corn. ๐Ÿ™‚ No really, as a child, corn was my favorite food – other kids were in love with pizza, for me it was corn. Although, it’s not my favorite anymore – I still like it. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Back to the cookbook at hand- I’m really enjoying it thus far. It has over 170 recipes that incorporate quinoa, quinoa flour, or quinoa flakes and it’s divided into several sections including Super Starts (breakfast), Staples (apps, sides, snacks & salads), Soups & Stews, Entrรฉes, Treats (cookies, muffins & more), Desserts and Baby Food with Quinoa. Although I don’t have any babies to make food for, I thought this section was particularly cool – if I had a child I would totally make them some Blueberry Banana Mash with quinoa (who knows I may end up making it for myself).

I also love all the beautiful pictures (cookbooks without photos bore me).

Quinoa 365.jpg

I received permission to share a recipe from the cookbook and since the chowder turned out so well, I thought it would be perfect to share.
Quinoa, Leek, and Corn Chowder


  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup sliced leek (white part only)
  • 1/2 cup qunioa
  • 3 cups frozen corn
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • pinch of ground pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 5 saffron threads


In a large saucepan, melt the butter and sautรฉ the onion and leek until the onion is tender and opaque, about 7 minutes. Add the quinoa and 2 cups of the corn; set aside the remaining corn to thaw. Cook for an additional 5 minutes, until the corn partially thaws. Add a few drops of the broth to keep it from sticking to the saucepan, if necessary.

Add the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until the quinoa is completely cooked. Remove from the heat. Puree the cooked mixture with a hand blender or cool slightly and puree in 2 batches in a blender or food processor. Return the mixture to low heat. Add the remaining 1 cup of corn and the red pepper, black pepper, cayenne, saffron and salt. Reheat and stir. Serve immediately. The soup can be stored in a seal container in the refrigerator for 2 days.
**I followed the recipe with only a few changes – earth balance instead of regular butter and turmeric instead of saffron. I will also note that the chowder turned out really thick for me so I added quite a bit of water to make it the consistency more soup like.

You may also be interested in a few other recipes from the cookbook, which are posted on the Quinoa 365 website: Healthy Carrot Spiced Muffins, Pepper Shrimp Quinoa, Quinoa Jalapeno Cornbread and Fresh Cucumber & Dill Toasted Almond Salad.

A few days ago I hinted at the fact that I made Ashley’s Pumpkin Spice Almond Butter.


Indeed, I did! And, indeed it is delicious. I’ve been topping all my oats with a dollop and praying that I never run out. ๐Ÿ˜‰


If you’re like me and have never made your own almond butter before, you may want to try your hand at it with this recipe. You won’t be disappointed!


Quinoa is pronounced Keen-Wa.

Never heard of Quinoa before – find out what it’s all about.

Recipes to share:

Cheddar Cheese Straws and Thai Red Curry Squash Soup (both recipes were from the Whole Foods cooking demo)

Bobby Flay’s Brussels Sprouts with Pomegranates and Vanilla-Pecan Butter from his Thanksgiving THROWDOWN with The Pioneer Woman.

Other fun (local RVA) news:

The Gap at Short Pump Mall is having it’s Grand Opening this Saturday, November 20, 2010. They’re hosting a party with light snacks, facepainting and balloon animals for the kids. Raffles and Door Prizes throughout the day from 10:00am-9:00pm. Also, 40% off all day.

Happy weekend friends!!

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  1. That looks like a super delicious, nourishing chowder. And with quinoa, which I always want to eat more but don’t like to eat just plain. Very awesome.

  2. Oh, I love Short Pump! We had a girls shopping trip there a few years ago ๐Ÿ™‚ so much fun!

  3. The cover of that Quinoa cookbook looks so pretty! I love red quinoa with spinach and hummus – it’s a food that goes with everything.

    Thanks for sharing the recipe ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. welp. i will definitely be making this! i loveee corn chowder, and i love the fact that this has no dairy in it!! happy weekend =)

  5. Quinoa and corn are both on my top favorite food list so I will definitely try this! Do you ever eat quinoa flakes? I love them with maple syrup!

  6. I’ve never used leeks in the kitchen but really want to try them soon. The chowder looks great girl! Let me know if you’re over by the mall tomorrow, I’d love to meet up if I’m not running around like a crazy person before the big event on Saturday night! ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Wow! What a great cookbook. I’ve never thought of using quinoa as a base for soup, but I imagine that it does wonders! I’m glad you were able to post the recipe because I wanted to make soup this weekend. Thank you for sharing with us. I hope you have a relaxing weekend!

  8. that looks aaaawesome. making it!

  9. That soup looks great! Thank you so much for sharing the recipe! There are tons of recipes available on the net but I’m always hesitant to try because I never know how it will turn out so it’s great to read about people’s experiences before trying!

  10. There’s a quinoa cookbook?! Holy amazing. I’m borderline obsessed with quinoa, too ๐Ÿ™‚ The chowder looks delicious; thanks for sharing the recipe!

  11. Ooh! That looks like a big bowl of healthy comfort food to me!

  12. I love quinoa! It’s probably my favorite grain because it is so versatile and cooks so quickly. Thanks for the recipe, I will have to try it out.

  13. Oooh I love quinoa and this chowder looks amazing! We had red quinoa for the first time this week; it was delicious.

  14. That’s such a great solution to creamy soups. I usually use potato and yellow squash puree but quinoa has so many better nutritional qualities.



  15. hahaha, all this time I’ve been saying it “Kee-no-ah”!

  16. THIS WAS SOOOOO GOOD! Thank you! ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. Great idea to use it as a thickener, I bet it would still work after toasting the quinoa in a pan or oven to get a darker soup, nuttier taste.

  18. Bevywevy5555 says:

    Just made the Quinoa, Leed and Corn chowder–Delicious! Love the slight heat from the cayenne pepper! You were definitely right–I added a lot of water after I blended it up! Great recipe!

  19. quinoa is a pretty great (pseudo) grain. never tried putting it in a a soup or chowder!

    i used to live just across the street from short pump; now I’m in southern CA. I toootally miss VA, but it’s hard to complain about SoCal.

    happy weekend!

  20. I’m also a huge quinoa fan… I’ll definitely be checking out this cookbook! And that almond butter sounds fantastic… not that you ever need to twist my arm to eat AB, but I love the addition of the pumpkin ๐Ÿ™‚

  21. hey brit! love reading your blog! for health reasons i’m going to have to start eating gluten-free. at first i was nervous, but now i’m excited to get a new food palette! i love your recipes using quinoa. do you know of some other gluten-free foods that are really easy to prepare for a “beginner”? thanks girl! i hope you and isaac enjoy the holiday season

  22. This was great, a lot less cloying than a dairy based corn chowder.

  23. Hi everyone,
    I live very near Seattle. This whole area had quite a storm several days ago and now there is very little ground that is not covered with ice making food very hard for the birds to find . I have lots of quinoa in the pantry and just got back inside from throwing seed in strategic spots. It’s too icy to drive anywhere to buy seed so I am overjoyed that I could turn the tables a bit and have the birds eat my birdseed!
    Thought my fellow quinoa-loving folks might get a kick out of this.

  24. Hi Brittany,

    I would like to try this recipe; how much turmeric did you use?

    I have the Quinoa 365 cookbook, but have not tried this recipe yet … and saffron is so expensive. It’s a big plus for me to review someone else’s review of a recipe I have before I try it myself.



  1. It’s all about the snack | says:

    […] most likely be around 9pm since Alex only gets in around that time! On the menu for tonight is a Quinoa, Leek and Corn Chowder that looked so delicious I just had to have it! I’m also going to make lean turkey burgers […]

  2. […] The Quinoa lentil burger was another delish recipe from the Quinoa 365 cookbook, the same place I found the Quinoa, Leek and Corn Chowder recipe. […]

  3. […] ever had chocolate graham crackers, but knowing what a mastermind Ashley is in the kitchen (hello pumpkin spiced almond butter) I would bet these are pretty darn […]

  4. […] saw a rendition of the recipe in Quinoa 365 (which I am loving, btw) and decided it was time to put a delicious spin on overnight […]

  5. […] Quinoa Leek and Corn Chowder. Nothing is better than a creamy corn chowder on chilly day. […]

  6. […] Cooking with Rosie, Beetroot Burgers from The Creative Pot, French Bread Rolls from Dine and Dish, Quinoa, Leek and Corn Chowder from Eating Bird Food, Spiced Lamb Steaks with a Warm Moroccan Couscous Salad from The English […]

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