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Recipe for slow cooker quinoa with zucchini, mushrooms and chicken sausage

Slow cooker quinoa with zucchini, mushrooms and chicken sausage.

All summer I practiced with my slow cookers, adapting recipes from cookbooks and blogs, modifying some of my own stove top and oven favorites to the low-and-slow cooking style of these wonderful little machines. I knew the day would come when I would give zucchini a try, yet I feared turning it to complete and utter mush with hours of cooking. The solution? Add it at the end, so it stays firm and flavorful. This quinoa with zucchini, mushrooms and chicken sausage, a satisfying one-pot meal, requires just five minutes of prep, and delivers big flavor, with no mush. Practice makes perfect.

Quinoa with zucchini, mushrooms and sausage. #crockpot #slowcooker

Slow cooker quinoa with zucchini, mushrooms and chicken sausage

From the pantry, you'll need: quinoa, chicken sausage, chicken stock, sun-dried or slow-roasted tomatoes, thyme, oregano, garlic, onion.

Serves 6.


1-1/2 cups quinoa (I use red quinoa), rinsed
3 cups chicken stock
12 oz flavorful chicken sausage, sliced (I use sun-dried tomato with basil sausage)
1 small onion, diced
6 sun-dried tomato halves, roughly chopped

1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried oregano
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
4 cups diced zucchini (1 giant zucchini)
3 cups roughly chopped mushrooms
Fresh black pepper, to taste


In a 4- or 5-quart slow cooker, add the quinoa, chicken stock, sausage, onion, tomato, thyme, oregano and garlic. Cover and cook on HIGH for 2-1/2 hours, or on LOW for 5 hours.

If you have cooked on LOW, turn the cooker to HIGH and add the mushrooms and zucchini right on top of the quinoa. Do not stir it in; cover and cook on HIGH for 30 minutes.

Stir the vegetables into the quinoa, cover, and cook for an additional 15 minutes.

Then, cook partially covered for 15 minutes more, or until most of the liquid has evaporated. Gently fluff the quinoa. Taste, and season with black pepper.

Serve hot, or transfer to containers and allow to cool completely before refrigerating or freezing.

[Printer-friendly recipe.]

More recipes in The Perfect Pantry:
Quinoa turkey meatloaf
Chicken and vegetable quinoa stir-fry
Red quinoa, beet and pecan salad with pomegranate-orange vinaigrette
Chickpea, quinoa and spinach salad with preserved lemon vinaigrette
Fregula sarda with leeks and sausage

Other recipes that use these pantry ingredients:
Quinoa chicken salad, from My Colombian Recipes
Spicy sausage and quinoa stuffed bell peppers, from Quick and Dirty in the Kitchen
Quinoa sausage bake, from Mele Cotte
Chicken, broccoli and quinoa casserole with creamy curry sauce, from Kalyn's Kitchen
Hearty chicken stew with butternut squash and quinoa, from Cookin' Canuck

  Make this quinoa, zucchini, mushroom and sausage dish in your slow cooker. #crockpot

Need more creative ideas for using zucchini? Get 23 Zucchini, my e-book packed with fantastic recipes, full-color photos and a few fun videos. With the FREE Kindle Reading app, delicious zucchini recipes will always be just one click away on any computer, tablet or smart phone. Click here to learn more.

Disclosure: The Perfect Pantry earns a few pennies on purchases made through the Amazon.com links in this post. Thank you for supporting this site when you start your shopping here.


I love when I have all the ingredients on hand! I never thought to pair zucchini and quinoa, but it makes sense.

Oh yes, I think this is a brilliant recipe!

Mimi, that's how this recipe came about. I love making it all in the slow cooker.

Kalyn, perhaps I'm breaking all the rules of slow cooker cooking, but I do love it when dishes like this one come together!

This looks wonderful! I need to get a slow cooker...really. I love love love quinoa and make it all the time. Thanks for linking to one of my recipes! :)

I love quinoa or quinua! What a delicious recipe and thank you for the link,Lydia!

I am enjoying your recent explorations of the slow cooker - such a great way to have dinner waiting when I get home from work - please keep them coming!! (I did a half batch of vegan bread pudding in mine over the weekend - YUM!)

Chris, I'm completely addicted to my slow cooker now. I know you'd love this style of cooking.

Erica, love your recipe! I'm crazy about quinoa, too.

Amy, thanks so much. And don't worry, I have lots of slow cooker recipes coming over the next few months. More and more, I'm learning to use the slow cooker and I'm having fun testing some of my old stove-top and oven recipes in the slow cooker, too.

Oooh, I bet this one is delish, Lydia! Thanks for creating it! :-)


Shirley, I usually make quinoa in my rice cooker, but this slow-cooker method worked really well and I had fun working on the recipe.

I've never tried making quinoa in a slow cooker - so glad you perfected it, and figured out how to include zucchini without overcooking it!

Sounds delicious! I love quinoa!

Jeanette, I hope to become the queen of true one-pot cooking!

Paz, really good, this dish. Try it.

I have this going in my slow cooker right now. Haven't tasted it yet but it smells DELISH!

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