Confused between the terms Kaniwa and quinoa?
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Confused between the terms Kaniwa and quinoa?

What is Kaniwa? 

Kaniwa is a grain like quinoa, grows in the same region, has the same nutritive values but differs in size from it. Comparatively, the size of the kaniwa grain is just half of the fully grown quinoa grain. As the name differs similarly, the species of these two grains also differ from each other, thus changing the genetic makeup. But due to the above similar qualities, Kaniwa is many times referred to as “Baby quinoa”

Eventually, this is considered as the super grain, and one reason behind this could be that this plant could be found in the regions where you cant see quinoa. Thus, this means that you can easily find the Kaniwa in the higher altitudes which are impossible for millet and quinoa.

Consequently, it belongs to the same category of amarantharrowrootbuckwheat and other gluten-free food items. Moreover, you can find two varieties of this grain in the market: 

  • Black Kaniwa 
  • Brown kaniwa 

What is quinoa? 

Quinoa is a form of pseudo-cereal which is known for its gluten-free and high protein quality among the population. This grain is available in three different types being 

  • Red quinoa (Inca red) 
  • White quinoa (ivory white) 
  • Black quinoa 
  • Purple quinoa

Each of these types differs in some of the other ways mainly in terms of nutritive values and region. For consumption purposes, the upper layer of the seed grain is removed as it has a bitter taste.

Whereas, you can consume it in two different ways: Cooked and sprouted. Moreover, quinoa is known to be the healthiest alternative to replace the rice. Thus, it’s used in many dishes like porridges, stews etc. to elevate the taste and nutritive values. 

The difference between quinoa and Kaniwa? 

Eventually, after taking a brief look upon the various factors present in two, we have come over to a conclusion of the difference: 

1) In size 

The Kaniwa is half the size of the quinoa seeds.

2) The colour

You can find 4 colours in the quinoa and 2 colours in Kaniwa 

3) The covering 

Quinoa is covered with a coating which gives it a bitter taste thus it’s advised to wash it thoroughly before cooking with it to remove bitterness. However, sometimes you have to clean it for 2-3 times or more. 

Whereas there is no covering present on the grain of Kaniwa and thus you just need to wash it to remove any impurities. 

Nutritional values of Kaniwa 


Therefore, these were some fundamental difference between the Kaniwa and quinoa. Ultimately, I hope that now all your confusions are cleared, and you don’t have to put in much efforts to recognise it.

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