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Quinoa "Risotto" with Shrimp and Kale

"My mom's side of the family is Italian and we all love cooking together," says John. "For years, my mom has been hiding vegetables in our risottos. Now that I've caught on to her sneaky ways, I've kicked it up a notch and added quinoa in place of rice. This is now one of my favorites -- and it's gluten-free, too! For dessert, a bowl of raspberries and blueberries swirled around vanilla Greek yogurt is a fun red, white, and blue treat!" - John Breitfelder, age 9, Connecticut

Makes 6 servings


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 cup will-rinsed quinoa
  • 2 1/4 cups chicken stock or low-sodium chick broth
  • 1 cup chopped kale
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn
  • 1 medium plum tomato, chopped
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan


  1. In a large sauté pan over moderate heat, warm 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add the garlic and shrimp, alone with a pinch of salt and pepper, and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the shrimp turn pink, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl. Do not clean pan.
  2. In the same sauté pan over moderate heat, warm the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add the onion and sauté until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the quinoa and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 1 minute. Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the kale, peas, corn, and tomato and cook until the quinoa is tender, about 5 minutes. Add the cooked shrimp and gently stir to combine. Add the Parmesan, and season with salt and pepper. Serve hot!

317 calories; 21g protein; 30g carbohydrates; 12g fat (2.6g saturated fat); 383mg sodium

More information about the Kids' State Dinner:

  • Check out the other winning 2013 Kids' State Dinner Recipes here.
  • Learn more about Kids' State Dinner here.