Quinoa for Tide Pools Recipe

Quinoa for Tide Pools Recipe

Photos and recipe by Jillian Zieske 

The sun finally triumphed through the grey of Seattle winter, so we packed our packs and set out to enjoy it by camping along the Olympic Peninsula. We settled at Hole in the Wall Beach (yes there was a wall and yes, it had a hole in it), where we came across some captivating tide pools. My inner 6 year old came out to play in these little pools of wonder. Little micro communities that pop up rhythmically to soak in a few minutes of sunlight, and then wash away, recharge, and come alive again in new ways. That beautiful pattern blows my mind.

It also reminds me of the incredible little community I have around me, and hopefully you have one, too. I think we’re all like creatures in these little tide pools. We swim along through the week, saying hi as we pass each other, maybe even bob around in the same current for an evening or two.

Then the weekend comes much like the tide going out. We get out of the M-F rhythm, bask in the sun, show our true colors, and pause to float next to each other. Sometimes that means climbing on rocks, other times it means sleeping on beaches, but it always means eating together.

So here’s a meal to make with your little tide pool.

Quinoa for Tide Pools

Big pot + lid
Camp stove (Jetboil or MSR Pocket Rocket are great!)
Wood stirring utensil
Cutting board (a piece of cardboard or paper bag also works, then doubles as fire kindle!)

6 chicken breasts
3 cups uncooked quinoa (about 6 cups cooked)
1 can chickpeas
3 peppers, diced in ½” inch
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ onion, diced
1 small container crumbled goat cheese
1 bag spinach
juice from half lemon
small bit of oil (this is kind of optional. I originally forgot this and was totally fine)
salt + pepper

I’m a big fan of precooking for camping- easier, quicker, more efficient, etc. 

Precook the night before: 
Chicken breasts with a dash and salt and pepper- Pan fry, bake, maybe even your beloved George Foreman grill, any method will do. You will need these cut into 1” pieces. Cool ‘em, Ziploc ‘em, and put ‘em in the fridge for the next day. 

Quinoa- follow directions on the package. Basically 1 part quinoa: 2 parts water in a pot, bring it to a boil, and then simmer until water is soaked up. Let cool, mix the can of chickpeas in, put in a Ziploc bag, then put in the fridge with the chicken.

At the campsite:    

  • Fire up the camp stove. 
  • Saute onion and peppers for a few minutes. Then add garlic and place lid on until peppers are soft.
  • Add/reheat chicken with lid on (2-3 minutes). Ddd/reheat the quinoa + chickpea with lid on (2-3 minutes)
  • Add spinach, stir well and put lid on until leaves start with wilt.
  • Stir in goat cheese and s+p. add lemon juice.

Voila! A one-pot masterpiece.

About Jill

Jillian Zieske lives in Seattle where she’s usually cooking with friends or wandering in the mountains. She has a love for puns, good coffee, and celebrating the little victories in life. Follower her on Instagram or head over to her personal website for more recipes and beautiful words. 

Headshot by Gregory Balkin

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