Quinoa and apple drink

As promised, here is the recipe for the quinoa and apple drink that is so popular in the mountains. It comes from Cocinando con Carmen, a booklet of recipes we picked up from SAE Cuzco.

1 cup cleaned quinoa

1/2 kg apples, cut into quarters

2 cinnamon sticks

1/2 tbsp cloves

sugar to taste

1/2 cup sugar to give colour

1. Fill a pot with 2 litres of water and add the quinoa, apple, cinnamon, and cloves.

2. Bring the mix to a boil and let it simmer. When the apple is cooked, remove it and place it in a blender and blend until it is a liquid, then pour it through a sieve and return the juice to the pot. Drink is done when the quinoa is done.

3. To give some colour, heat the sugar until it caramalizes and add it to the pot. Add extra sugar for taste, if you desire.

13 responses to “Quinoa and apple drink

  1. Was reading the recipe for quinoa apple drink. It’s in metric. Need it translated. Also, it says to cook the apple and then blend it til it’s liquid, strain and return to pot. I don’t see how juicing just the apple will make a protein drink! Explain, please.

  2. Hi, the only thing in metric is the apples – 1/2 kg is about 1 lb of apples. The protein is in the quinoa, not the apple – the fruit just provides some flavour and other nutrients. I hope this helps.

  3. Guess I didn’t word it right. I meant, how does it make a protein drink, if the quinoa isn’t blended, too?

  4. See above comment. It hasn’t been replied to, yet

  5. I keep leaving a comment, and you keep wanting me to activate an account, that’s been activated 3 times, already!!!

    • Hey, hold on. It’s the site, not me, that is bothering you about an account. I’m sorry I haven’t posted an answer, it’s been a busy week.

      The quinoa is a source of protein. The whole concoction is a soupy blend of flavours – like apple soup more than apple juice, with the quinoa, being previously cooked and rather soft, adding a lot of texture and the protein. It’s a little like drinking soupy oatmeal.

      If you have a hard time visualizing it (my description is pretty sorry), you can check out a picture here. I hope this helps.

  6. Thank you so much for supplying this recipe! I was in Cusco and they sell this on the street corners in the mornings and all the locals buy it for breakfast (along with a heavenly angel food style cake- all for about 35 cents). We have been looking to duplicate it since.

  7. Just to be clear. Do I put the entire mixture through the blender or just remove the apple, blend it, pass it through a sieve, and then put the juice mixture back in the pot where the quinoa is cooking (i.e. quinoa never goes through the blender)? Thanks!

    • No, you just blend the apple, sieve the blended apple, then add it to the quinoa. That’s why it’s in quarters – it’s easier to fish it out that way. The quinoa is supposed to be cooking the whole time. Also, I think blended quinoa would be yucky.🙂

  8. Hi Ryan
    it’s great to read that you suggest not to blend quinoa!! the majority of other recipes tell you to blend everything together but as the pic you have attached showed, quinoa cannot be blended in this drink!. I’ve tried many times replicating this drink since I’ve been back from Peru but there is something that doesn’t work. My quinoa doesn’t float in the drink (like it should and confirmed by your pic too) but remains at the bottom. Is there a secret behind this? Really hope to get a reply from you…many thanks in advance!

    • I actually haven’t tried making this for some time, but you’ve motivated me to give it a whirl, maybe this weekend! I’ll post results here if I do it. I’m glad I could help out – the whole quinoa makes a huge difference, doesn’t it?

      • That’s great, hope you’ll find the time! Thanks…yes certainly the whole quinoa makes the difference, after all that is the drink you find in Peru and Bolivia! In southern peru i also tried the same drink but with kiwicha (amaranth) instead. The flavour was even greater. However when i tried to replicate this too, the grains would stay at the bottom thus were not properly mixed with the other ingredients…and blending the kiwicha isn’t easy because it’s tiny small…

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