Quinoa vs. Rice

The main difference between quinoa and rice is quinoa is not a grain like rice. Quinoa is the seed of a plant and a relative of beets and spinach.  However, when quinoa is cooked it has similar features and nutritional values to rice.

Quinoa and rice both provide the body with fiber, protein and many different micronutrients; though, quinoa provides more of these nutrients than brown rice. Due to the greater fiber and protein content, quinoa will fill us up faster than rice. Quinoa is a great option as a protein source for vegetarians, vegans or others looking for an alternative to meat because it is a complete source of protein; i.e. it has all the necessary amino acids. Lastly, quinoa is a great source of iron, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese and zinc. Quinoa also contains some calcium, potassium and selenium.

White and brown rice both provide our body with fiber and protein, however brown rice has a higher amount of fiber and protein therefore is the better option. Brown rice contains more micronutrients than white rice such as phosphorus, manganese, selenium, and magnesium with smaller amounts of copper, calcium and zinc. Lastly, white and brown rice are free of cholesterol and Trans fat.

People trying to avoid gluten and those with Celiac Disease can have quinoa and rice because both options are gluten-free.

Verdict: Quinoa wins the battle! Quinoa is the better option due to greater nutritional values such as higher amounts of fiber, protein and micronutrients. Quinoa can be used anywhere rice would be used or it can be used in place of oatmeal for breakfast!

If you are looking to have variety in your diet, quinoa and brown rice are both a good option due to the fiber, protein and micronutrients that your body needs!

Megan Farr, Weight of the Fox Valley Intern