Can you freeze cooked quinoa? Short answer: YES. Read on to find out more about how and why you should freeze cooked quinoa.

Recipe Overview

Why you’ll love it: Having cooked quinoa in the freezer is a food prepping trick that saves you a ton of time and enables you to make quick healthy meals.

How long it takes: half hour
Equipment you’ll need: large covered pan, freezer bags or containers
Servings: makes 9 cups

Quinoa in a zip-top bag and in a bowl.
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Can you freeze quinoa?

This has probably become clear to you, since you’re reading this post, but yes, you can! It’s one of my favorite kitchen shortcuts. I don’t ever cook a partial bag of quinoa; I always make the entire thing. It’s so much easier to only do that work once rather than every time you need quinoa for a recipe.

I cook the entire bag, let it cool, and then put it in measured portions in zip-top bags. I flatten them out so they fit nicely in my freezer, label them with the date and quantity, and then freeze until I need them again. 

They thaw quickly (especially when they’re flattened out), and they make my life (and yours!) SO MUCH EASIER.

How to Freeze Quinoa

Here’s the quick version. Scroll down to the recipe card for the full run-down.

  1. Cook quinoa as directed on the package. Keep in mind it about triples in size, so choose a big pot!
  2. Cool completely. I usually put it in a bowl and toss it in the fridge uncovered so the steam can escape.
  3. Portion and freeze. I like to freeze in 2 cup portions, but if you have a favorite recipe that takes three cups, or 1, or 10, do that!
  4. Flatten out the freezer bags and label with contents, quantity, and date. Freeze for up to 10 months.

Can You Freeze Uncooked Grains?

Whole grains tend to spoil faster so it’s a good idea to either refrigerate or freeze them for long term storage. If you buy a large quantity of brown rice, quinoa, farro, etc., freeze the uncooked grains to prolong their shelf life for up to a year.
Cooked quinoa in a bowl.


How long can you keep cooked quinoa in the freezer?

You can keep cooked quinoa in the freezer for 8 to 10 months, whereas in the fridge, it only lasts about a week.

How do you reheat frozen quinoa?

Take one of the bags of quinoa out of the freezer and let it defrost either in the fridge overnight, or on the counter for a few hours. You can also warm it in the microwave for 45 seconds to a minute, even if it’s still a little frozen! Once it’s thawed, you can use it in any of number of recipes, or season it and eat it as a side dish.

How do you store leftover quinoa?

Store cooked quinoa in the fridge, in an airtight container for about a week. Or, as this post directs, freeze in a zip-top bag for up to 10 months.

How do you freeze grains?

Cook, cool completely, and freeze in an airtight container or zip-top bag. It’s so easy! This works with quinoa as well as most any other grain (brown rice, white rice, farro, millet, etc.).

Cooked quinoa in a bowl with a wooden spoon.

Best Quinoa Recipes

Here are some of my faves, but you can see all my quinoa recipes here.


How to Freeze Quinoa

5 from 2 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
Servings: 9 servings
Can you freeze cooked quinoa? Short answer: YES. Read on to find out more about how and why you should freeze cooked quinoa.
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  • 3 cups uncooked quinoa
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt, optional


  • Rinse quinoa and cook as directed on package. Typically a 1:3 ratio of uncooked quinoa to water is required.
  • If there are no package directions, combine quinoa, water, and salt in a very large pot with a lid. Bring to a boil over high heat. Once it boils, reduce heat to medium low. Keep covered and simmer for 20 minutes or until water is absorbed.
  • Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and let cool completely.
  • Using a measuring cup, scoop 1 or 2 cup portions into freezer bags and label with measurement. Flatten and freeze for up to 10 months.



Serving: 1cup, Calories: 209kcal, Carbohydrates: 36g, Protein: 8g, Fat: 3g, Saturated Fat: 0.4g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 398mg, Potassium: 319mg, Fiber: 4g, Vitamin A: 8IU, Calcium: 32mg, Iron: 3mg

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

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Post updated October, 2019.

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  1. Must see Seattle Janitorial Services says:

    I find that quinoa freezes with no texture changes at all. It’s good to be used hot or cold after thawing, which is much better than rice.

    1. Rachel Gurk says:

      I agree completely!

  2. Rachel Y says:


    Can I ask if i could do the same for millet? Thanks!

  3. Rachel Y says:

    Hi, may I ask how do I thaw frozen quinoa besides using microwave? Can I just leave it to thaw on the counter? Thanks!

    1. Rachel Gurk says:

      I usually just thaw mine overnight in the fridge. You could definitely do it on the counter though for a few hours. Microwave should work too, actually! :)

      1. Rachel Y says:

        Hi Rachel,

        I am just wondering if I could do the same with millet (cook a batch> freeze it> thaw on counter top)?


  4. tanya says:

    I’ve been freezing brown rice and googled to see about freezing quinoa – glad to see you’ve tried it and liked it!

    I’m single so cooking for one, and I freeze my brown rice in 1/2 cup servings using 4 oz mason jars. Going to give that a try with the quinoa tonight!

    1. Rachel Gurk says:

      Great! I hope it works out well for you. One of my favorite tricks.

  5. Colleen @ What's Baking in the Barbershop?! says:

    Oooooh, what a great tip! I make dishes with quinoa ALL the time but have never thought to cook it, freeze it, and have it ready when I want to use it. Brilliant. Thanks!

  6. Diana @ VeggieNextDoor says:

    Yes – freezing grains is a great tip. Whenever I make too much rice and put it in the fridge it gets dry and inedible. I only recently realized “duh – sometimes I buy frozen rice, why not freeze my own!”. Once I re-heat it, its soft & fluffy again!