Black rice and quinoa are both commonly used ingredients across the world. They come from different areas and certainly differ in nutritional values. Therefore, sit back and keep reading to find out which is better between black rice vs quinoa.
Black Rice vs Quinoa
You will commonly find black rice referred to as purple rice, because it turns dark purple upon cooking. There are plenty of black rice varieties available on the market, including the most popular ones such as Indonesian black rice and Thai Jasmine black rice.
This rice variety is traditionally used in Asian cultures but it has become common across the globe as well. You will come across black rice in Indian cuisine but they call it as chak-hao and it is most commonly used for deserts.
It is also used in China for the preparation of the traditional Chinese black rice cake, as well as bread, noodles, and other deserts.
Unlike white rice, black rice has a milder, nuttier taste and it is most similar to brown rice when it comes to nutritional values. We will be focusing on nutritional values below but right now it is important to mention that black rice is one of the best sources of iron and vitamin E when it comes to rice varieties.
In fact, the bran hull of black rice is very rich in antioxidants and it features the highest level of anthocyanins ever found in food, which makes it so beneficial for our health. Moving on to quinoa, this seed is an excellent source of protein and dietary fiber. It is also packed with vitamins and minerals, most importantly Vitamin B.
Quinoa is generally considered a more valuable ingredient than any variety of wheat, corn or oats and, just like black rice, it is gluten-free. However, quinoa actually has origins from South America, more specifically a northwestern region called Andean.
It was cultivated over 4000 years ago in the area of a lake called Lake Titicaca. Quinoa is commonly used as an addition to salads and vegan burgers, as well as cereal meals, which is why it is often considered breakfast food. Interestingly, the seed coat of quinoa gives it a very bitter taste. However, due to the processing the seeds go through, the bitterness can rarely be tasted.
Generally, quinoa features high amounts of phosphorous, potassium, calcium and iron, which gives you great energy to start off your day. Besides, the seed is very easy to digest, which is why it is commonly recommended for people who suffer from issues with the digestive system. Overall, quinoa has a crunchy feel with a nutty flavor, which makes it a perfect cereal food!
The Comparison of Nutritional Values
When it comes to nutritional values, both black rice and quinoa are full of essential nutrients. Black rice comes with many health benefits, as it is rich in antioxidants that help our bodies fight off diseases.
It also features great amounts of dietary fiber and it is best for people suffering from diabetes, as it can help stop the development of this disease.
Benefits of Black Rice
Black rice is also effective when it comes to preventing heart disease, thanks to minerals such as iron and copper. One serving of black rice consists of an average of over 150 calories, 34 grams of carbohydrates, around eight grams of protein and two to three grams of fiber.
As we already mentioned, black rice is most similar to brown rice when it comes to nutritional values and we all know that brown rice is one of the healthiest rice varieties out there.
On the other hand, a serving of quinoa packs less calories per 100 grams with around 20 grams of carbs. However, it does include over 4 grams of protein and 3 grams of the much needed dietary fiber.
Besides being easy to digest and providing a lot of protein, quinoa is also an excellent source of zinc, folate and manganese.
What’s interesting about quinoa is that this seed is so healthy and beneficial that even the NASA’s Controlled Ecological Life Support System is using it as an experimental crop for astronauts embarking on longer journeys in space.
How to Prepare Quinoa and Black Rice in a Rice Cooker
We all know that rice cooker makes any cooking process simple and easy to do. The same goes for preparing black rice or quinoa.
We will start with black rice, which takes 25 minutes to cook in one of these appliances:
- For the best flavor of black rice, it is important to use the right liquid to rice ratio. Therefore, for each cup of black rice use 1 and ¾ cups of liquid.
- If you want to further improve the taste, you can use chicken broth instead of water to cook the rice in. However, water will do just fine too.
- Before you put the rice in the cooker, pour it into a bowl of clean water and mix lightly. You will notice the water getting darker.
- Rinse the rice and repeat the process until the water remains clear.
- Then drain the rice one more time and pour it into the cooker. Add the liquid using the correct ratio and set the rice cooker timer for 25 minutes. If you have one of the more advanced appliances, use the brown rice mode. Once the timer goes off, your rice will be ready for serving.
The process is quite similar when it comes to preparing quinoa, but it is important to use a different water ratio. Also, quinoa cooks faster than black rice in just about 15 minutes.
- To start off, put one cup of quinoa into the rice cooker. For each cup of quinoa add two cups of water and make sure to stick to this ratio, no matter how many cups you are preparing.
- Then put the lid on and set the timer for 15 minutes.
- The quinoa will get a nice and soft texture when cooked.
Both black rice and quinoa are very nutritious and definitely worth cooking. They are suitable for many healthy diets and even recommended for people suffering from certain diseases such as diabetics.
Let us know in the comments below what your thoughts are on each of these ingredients and which one do you prefer!