Crispy Pancetta Quinoa Bowl


Originally when I conceived this recipe, I envisioned using whole-wheat pasta instead of quinoa. But then when I got ready to make it, I was at a point of being O.D.’ed on pasta, having just made a large batch of it and eaten it over the course of several days. So I decided, why not try this with quinoa? The result is not the prettiest concoction in the world, but what it lacks in looks, it makes up for in taste, being much more savory and flavorful than many of the other quinoa bowls I’ve made. And it pays modern homage to my Italian heritage!

Crispy Pancetta Quinoa Bowl

Servings 3 to 4 servings
Author A Cookable Feast


  • 1 cup quinoa (I used red quinoa.)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbs. grapeseed oil or other high-smoke-point cooking oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 lb. pancetta, cut into small chunks (If you are getting it from a deli counter, ask for it to be cut in thicker slices.)
  • 7 large basil leaves, torn
  • 2 tbs. butter, melted
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper


  1. In a medium-large pot, bring quinoa and water to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to a simmer, cooking until the water is absorbed - about 15 minutes, or according to the specifications on the quinoa package.
  2. Add oil to a large saucepan and cook diced onion on medium heat for three to four minutes, stirring frequently, until lightly browned. Add pancetta and cook for another four minutes, then add garlic and cook for another two. Mix in basil, then remove from heat.
  3. Once quinoa is ready, add melted butter, ricotta cheese, and lemon juice and zest to it and mix well. Stir in pancetta mixture, crushed red pepper flakes, sea salt, and pepper and put on low heat for a minute or two, stirring constantly, until mixture is warmed through. Spoon into bowls and enjoy the rich, savory goodness! Makes 3-4 servings.

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  1. Springtime Ricotta Quinoa Bowl | A Cookable Feast | 20th Mar 15

    […] decided to do another ricotta quinoa bowl because I loved the Crispy Pancetta Quinoa Bowl that I made last week. And, frankly, I still had some ricotta cheese left. And some mint and some […]

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