Black Bean and Sweet Corn Mexican Quinoa

Easy, delicious, fast, fresh, flexible = perfect dinner for a busy school night.


Black Bean and Sweet Corn Mexican Quinoa:

I think this would be great with some yellow bell peppers and tomatoes if you've got some on hand, but it's damn good as is too!


  • Large, deep skillet with tight-fitting lid (I used enameled cast iron – worked great), knife, cutting board, stove top
  • 4 ears of corn, cut off the cobs
  • 2 small yellow onions, cut into half moons
  • 4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1 jalapeno with seeds, chopped
  • Your equivalent to 1 can of black beans
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 heaping Tbsp cumin
  • Fresh/dried cilantro to taste (dried is milder, if you’re not a cilantro fan like me)
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper
  1. Melt the coconut oil over medium heat in your skillet.  Saute the onions until softened, about 3-5 mins.  Add the garlic and jalapeno and saute another 2 mins, being careful not to burn the garlic.  Stir in the cumin, dried cilantro (if using fresh wait until the end and just wilt it in), a hefty pinch of salt and a couple hits of pepper.
  2. Stir in the quinoa.  Cook the quinoa dry for 1-2 mins, being careful not to burn it, but still letting it get toasted and coated in the spices.  Add the 2 cups veg stock, reduce the heat to med-low, cover and let simmer until the quinoa is cooked and all the liquid has evaporated, about 20 mins.
  3. When the quinoa is done, stir in the black beans and then the sweet corn.  Increase the heat if needed, and saute 2-3 mins until the beans are heated through and well incorporated.  Re-season as needed.
  4. ENJOY!!


5 thoughts on “Black Bean and Sweet Corn Mexican Quinoa

  1. I’ve been really curious about coconut oil, so I went to Whole Foods and saw some but it’s SO expensive! I don’t mind paying the money, but I wasn’t sure if it would be worth it since I’ve never tried it. Does it really add a good/different flavor to food? I love coconut, but I wasn’t sure if it had a strong flavor or what? What’s your opinion?

    • I don’t know about the UK, but here in the US it is expensive, but there can be as much of a $2-3 difference just between brands (usually based on packaging, and that’s a lot when you’re talking about something that’s $10 or $7) – so make sure you shop around!! I try to use coconut oil whenever I know I want strong flavors and smells because it heats soooo well and is really nice to cook with (molecularly, it’s the best fat to cook with because it resists break-down under heat unlike Evoo and other healthy oils; macro-level, it’s just a really smooth oil that coats onions and veg evenly).

      If you bake with it, then it does leave a decidedly coconut aroma in your cupcakes, etc (but not really enough to offend those who don’t like coconut at least that I’ve found). I really like it in savory dishes too because I think it adds a layer of flavor and enhances the aroma of spices, but it can show up if you’re food is lightly seasoned (like, I wouldn’t use it in a dish that’s only getting thyme, salt, and pepper – you know?). I think it goes really well with sauces that include soy sauce or liquid aminos (check out my vegan sloppy joes for another use of coconut oil).

      TL;DR: It’s one of those oils that is nice to cook with, but takes an experimental dish so you can get confident in understanding when it is or isn’t strong.

  2. I had this for dinner tonight. It was DELICIOUS. I had to use frozen corn due to the season but it was still great. I added a tablespoon of Penzey’s Turkish seasoning on top of the cumin and added a lot of fresh cilantro at the end. I did need to add a 1/2 cup of extra water at the end (1/4 C at a time) to finish off the quinoa, but that probably varies due to heat. This recipe is going to be added to my weekend dinner arsenal. It was really easy!

    • That’s great, Abby! I’m so glad you liked it! I found it really easy too, but super flavorful. The Turkish seasoning sounds awesome – I’ll have to track some down. Where do you get it?

      Happy to know that my recipes are helpful!

      • You can get the Turkish seasoning from Penzey’s Spices. I mail order my spices from them, but they do have a shop near Philly if you are ever out there. They have good quality spices that can be bought in bulk sizes. I order once or twice a year. The Turkish mix has many similar spices in it as most Mexican food. I am not big on straight cumin, so I usually stick a complimentary spice in my food. It worked in this dish 🙂

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