Slow Cooker Mexican Quinoa

4.65 from 17 votes
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Plant-based Mexican quinoa is made with pantry staples for an easy weeknight dinner. The slow cooker does all the work for this simple and flavorful vegan crockpot recipe!

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Mexican quinoa in bowl with yogurt and sliced avocado

This nourishing slow cooker sweet potato Mexican quinoa is one of our favorite slow cooker recipes. Naturally gluten free and vegan, this one-pot meal is made with protein-packed quinoa, beans, sweet potatoes, and spices. It sounds like a simple ingredient list, but let me tell you – the combination of everything is just so delicious!

It’s easy, too! Simply add all of the ingredients to the slow cooker, cover, and let the slow cooker do it’s thing. Cook for 3-4 hours on high or 6-8 hours on low.

Featured Comment

“Loved this recipe! Super easy, yet so satisfying. I threw an easy egg over it one morning for breakfast, also added tortilla strips one afternoon for a dipping snack. So versatile!” – Mollie

What You Need for Mexican Quinoa

Keep this recipe in your back pocket for when you need a “you don’t have anything to make for dinner” dinner. All you need are a few basic ingredients for this flavor packed meal:

Quinoa + sweet potatoes are the base of this recipe.

Canned black beans, whole kernel corn, crushed tomatoes, and green chiles add flavor, nutrients, and texture.

Broth keeps the quinoa moist.

Onion, taco seasoning, sriracha, and maple syrup add delightful flavor.

Mexican quinoa ingredients, uncooked, in slow cooker

Mexican Quinoa Substitutions

Slow cooker Mexican quinoa is totally adaptable to what you have on hand. Instead of:

  • White quinoa, use red, black, or tri-color quinoa
  • Black beans, use your favorite kind of beans
  • Canned whole kernel corn, use frozen corn
  • Veggie broth, use water or another kind of broth
  • Homemade taco seasoning, use a store bought spice mix
  • Sriracha, use your favorite hot sauce

And, instead of slow cooker Mexican quinoa, try our Mexican sweet potato quinoa casserole or Mexican quinoa salad.

Fully cooked Mexican quinoa in the slow cooker


Is this quinoa gluten free?

Yes, quinoa is a naturally gluten free seed that cooks up with a hearty texture. It’s often a great gluten free substitute for rice or farro.

How do you know when the sweet potatoes are done?

The sweet potatoes are cooked through when the chunks are fork tender. You should be able to easily pierce the potatoes with a fork without any resistance.

Can you make Mexican quinoa less spicy?

Definitely. For a less spice version, omit the green chiles and sriracha.


Not only is Mexican quinoa great for a weeknight dinner, it’s wonderful to enjoy throughout the week. Once the quinoa has fully cooked in the slow cooker, let it cool, then transfer into airtight containers. Refrigerate for up to 5 days for an easy grab-and-go meal.

Freeze this Quinoa

Mexican quinoa freezes beautifully! Store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months. And, here are all of our tips for preparing a vegetarian freezer meal.

Bowl of Mexican quinoa with yogurt, paprika, cilantro, and avocado on top

Serving Suggestions

This one-pot meal is just that – a meal made all in one pot with minimal prep and cleanup! Top each bowl of Mexican quinoa with guacamole or chopped avocado, diced tomatoes, salsa, sour cream or Greek yogurt (vegan if needed), a sprinkle of cheese (non-dairy works great), or fresh cilantro.

4.65 from 17 votes

Slow Cooker Mexican Quinoa

Whip up this savory slow cooker Mexican quinoa for a pantry-staple meal that's also naturally vegan and gluten-free!
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 4 hours
Total: 4 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 6
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  • 1 cup uncooked white quinoa
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 15 oz. black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 15 oz. whole kernel corn, drained and rinsed
  • 28 oz. crushed tomatoes
  • 4 oz. green chiles
  • 2 cups vegetable broth, or any kind of broth
  • 1/2 large red onion, finely diced
  • 3 tablespoons taco seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon sriracha
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup

Optional Toppings

  • fresh cilantro
  • yogurt, dairy-free if necessary
  • sliced avocado
  • smoked paprika


  • Spray your slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Place all of the ingredients into your slow cooker and mix until combined.
    A slow cooker filled with ingredients for Mexican quinoa before cooking.
  • Cover and cook on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 6-8 hours (or until the quinoa is fully cooked and the sweet potatoes are at desired texture).
  • Every hour, give the ingredients a stir.
  • When the quinoa is cooked and the sweet potatoes are soft, uncover the slow cooker.
    A slow cooker filled with Mexican quinoa after cooking.
  • Serve with your favorite toppings and enjoy!

Tips & Notes

  • Storage: Let the Mexican quinoa cool completely, then transfer to airtight containers and refrigerate for up to 5 days.
  • Freezing Instructions: Store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • Nutrition information does not include toppings.

Watch It

[adthrive-in-post-video-player video-id=”rPV6tRO6″ upload-date=”2020-05-09T22:37:02.000Z” name=”Slow Cooker Mexican Quinoa” description=”Throw all of the ingredients for this Healthy Slow Cooker NC Sweetpotato Mexican Quinoa into your slow cooker for an easy weeknight dinner that’s plant-based and made with pantry staples! “]


Serving: 1 /6 recipe, Calories: 342 kcal, Carbohydrates: 57 g, Protein: 16 g, Fat: 3 g, Fiber: 12 g, Sugar: 13 g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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About Lee Funke

Lee is the founder of Fit Foodie Finds and based in Minneapolis, MN. She started this website in 2010 as a way to share her love for real food and wellness. The internet has changed so much since then and so has Fit Foodie Finds. Today we're a female-run recipe website publishing hundreds of tried and true recipes developed and tested by our team.

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September 8, 2019 5:51 pm
Recipe Rating :

2 stars
Instructions are not very helpful… am I supposed to drain and rinse the beans and corn? Plus after cooking for the instructed amount of time the potatoes were not cooked through and the quinoa was not ready. I would not recommend this recipe to anyone

June 17, 2019 3:25 pm

Do you drain the corn and beans first or no? Can’t wait to try this!

March 11, 2019 9:58 am
Recipe Rating :

5 stars
Thanks for the easy recipe! I made this yesterday and my husband and I both really liked it! It will definitely go into our meal rotation.

March 9, 2019 12:13 pm

Is there a way this could be altered to be a stove top recipe? I’m a graduate student without a slow cooker or an instant pot and would love to see some options that’s don’t need these appliances!

February 25, 2019 5:04 pm

Made it – with only a few minor changes to fir my needs (and available ingredients. It came out GreaT!

I think minor changes won’t hurt the basic recipe. (I lacked the corn, so I substituted peas – it was fine.)

Amy L Caffrey
February 24, 2019 5:28 pm

Just made this, I’m so excited! I see the nutritional facts are listed and this may be a silly question but how much would one serving be? Is this about 1 cup? Thanks!

February 12, 2019 6:14 pm
Recipe Rating :

5 stars
Nice recipes. Great web

February 11, 2019 4:01 pm

Think this could be done in the instant pot? It looks amazing but I am short on time…

February 15, 2020 7:41 pm
Reply to  Ashley

I tried this in the instant pot last night, adapting it by a chart that converts slow cooker times to instant pot times. I thought it would work just fine, but it kept giving me a burn message on the pot, and I think it had to do with the quinoa in the thick tomato sauce, because I tried to stir it then deglaze the pot and restart it several times. I ended up having to turn it to the slow cook function on high until it finally cooked through. Something about it didn’t work on the pressure cook function, though it may be worth trying to cook the quinoa separate and try the rest of the recipe on the pressure cook function, as it is a delicious recipe and it would be nice to have a quicker cooking option when you forget to plan ahead (we like using mild green chilies, no sriracha, a Tbs of onion powder instead of chopped onion, and white potatoes rather than yams/sweet).

February 10, 2019 12:00 pm
Recipe Rating :

5 stars
I had a busy week. So I made my husband make this. I figured, how rogue can he go with a slow cooker? It’s only 10 mins prep. HE’S GOT THIS. AND HE DID! He said it took about 20 mins to prep and he forgot the green chili’s, but this was still amazing. Lots of spice and flavor. Sweet potato adds a nice texture.
A recipe even a husband can do!

January 27, 2019 6:12 pm

It was good, I doubled the recipe. It took over 4 hours in high. Only put in 3 TBL of chili powder instead of doubling it, plenty of flavor.