Cherry Quinoa Amaranth Porridge

This steamy breakfast bowl is aromatic, sweet and nutty, and packed with protein to start your day right.

This hot breakfast bowl of quinoa amaranth is aromatic, sweet and nutty, and packed with protein to start your day right… with a cherry on top!

Quinoa Amaranth Porridge is an easy, plant-based start to your day... with a cherry on top!
Can you smell the cinnamon and cooking cherries?!

“It smells GOOD in here!” my daughter exclaimed, as she ran into the kitchen. I held out a spoonful of this porridge (with a cherry on top). She mmmmm-ed happily. Then promptly asked “Can I have a bowl?” You bet!

Soup, hot tea and porridge. Basically anything hot and in a bowl or mug. That’s what I crave during winter. It’s flannel jammies, wool socks and sleeping cats weather. This recipe started out as a “What can I make with what’s in the pantry and freezer, because I don’t feel like grocery shopping” breakfast. And it despite its breakfast-hack origins… dang. This steamy, hot bowl is aromatic, sweet and nutty, and packed with protein and nutrients. 

2 Ways to Cook Quinoa Amaranth Porridge

This cozy breakfast is equally good made on the stovetop in a small pot, and in the Instant Pot. The bowl photographed here was made on the stovetop, because it is a bit prettier. 

Stovetop Breakfast Porridge

One-pot breakfast. May require a tiny bit more babysitting to make sure it is taken off the heat before it looses all the liquid. And you’ll add in cherries at the end. If you like pretty food, or don’t have an Instant Pot, this is your jam!

Instant Pot Breakfast Porridge

If you have an “abundant” morning, especially with little ones, please go the easiest route and dump it in your well-used IP. Zero babysitting. You have enough of that anyway! If you’re cooking at high altitude (we’re at 9,400 feet – higher than Vail), I’ve found that it can be hard to get quinoa to a soft texture on the stove. Our water simply doesn’t boil hot enough. If you struggle with this too, I recommend using an Instant Pot for a softer texture.

Potatoes are equally hard to boil at this elevation, too. But the IP rocks at Potato Corn Chowder. Also gluten-free and vegan!

Quinoa & Amaranth

They cook like little grains, but are actually seeds. Naturally gluten-free. Amaranth is so teensy and adorable, my 9-year-old loves it. Both amaranth and quinoa are vegan protein sources, high in fiber and loaded with minerals. I love experimenting with quinoa in both sweet and savory dishes. A yummy dinner with quinoa is by topping cooked quinoa and chickpeas with roast veggies and a curry sauce drizzle!

Closeup of quinoa and amaranth

Cinnamon & Cardamom

Cinnamon may help regulate blood sugar. It’s also just delicious, and worth spending a couple extra bucks for The Good Stuff! (Totally unpaid endorsement – Penzey’s has the best Vietnamese Cinnamon. I buy a bag of it at a time. Seriously.) Cardamom, commonly found in Indian foods and chai, is good for digestion and helps the immune system.

Frozen Cherries

I am addicted to frozen cherries and their dark-sweet flavor. A Trader Joe’s employee also once told me that they’re lemurs favorite treats, too. So. There’s that! Cherries have 25% of your daily vitamin C, too!  

If you love this recipe, you’ll also love my GF nutty cherry granola! Pop it on top of soy yogurt and frozen cherries for an easy breakfast.

Maple syrup drizzled over porridge, pecans and cherries


My husband grew up in Louisiana and his dad harvested pecans. Needless to say, pecans are a staple in our family. My daughter takes them in her lunchbox to school nearly every day. And hubby is probably waiting for me to use them for less “virtuous” foods, and just make a good ol’ pecan pie one of these days. Soon, love, soon! When they’re not soaked in delicious sugar, pecans are a huge source of omega’s, protein, manganese, and magnesium. A little handful of pecans also goes a long way to stave off the hangry. 😉 

Want to learn more about vegan/plant protein sources? Check out my free printable & video!

Happy cooking, my friend!

cherry quinoa amaranth porridge in a white bowl

Cherry Quinoa Amaranth Porridge

  • Author: Katie Allen
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 30
  • Yield: 2 1x


This steamy breakfast bowl is aromatic, sweet and nutty, and packed with protein to start your day right. Instructions for Instant Pot and stovetop methods.



  • 1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 1/2 cup amaranth
  • 1/2 cup soy milk, plain
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
  • pinch sea salt
  • 1/21 cup frozen dark cherries
  • 1/4 cup pecan pieces (unsalted)
  • Optional topping: maple syrup


Instant Pot

  1. Put quinoa, amaranth, soy milk, water, cinnamon, cardamom, sea salt and cherries in IP.
  2. Put the lid on and set to “sealing”.
  3. Press the porridge button.
  4. When it beeps, quick release the steam safely.
  5. Serve topped with pecans and maple syrup.


  1. Put quinoa, amaranth, water, soy milk, cinnamon, cardamom and sea salt in a small pot.
  2. Bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce heat to simmer for 30 minutes.
  4. At 20-25 minutes, stir in frozen cherries and a splash more soy milk.
  5. When cherries are warm, take off the heat.
  6. Serve topped with pecans and maple syrup.

  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size: 1
  • Calories: 438
  • Sugar: 10.6g
  • Sodium: 161mg
  • Fat: 9.5g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.5g
  • Carbohydrates: 72.7g
  • Fiber: 9.3g
  • Protein: 15.8g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg

Keywords: breakfast, porridge, quinoa porridge, amaranth porridge, grain free, gluten free

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