After rinsing some white quinoa today I noticed that some of the seeds had a pink tint. The quinoa is from a new bag, so I don't think it's bad, but I also can't find anything about pinkish quinoa elsewhere on the internet.

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Does anyone know why this might be?

  • 3
    Was this in a batch of red quinoa, or white quinoa? (and as both exist ... I have no idea if they can cross-pollinate and end up pink)
    – Joe
    Feb 4, 2020 at 2:27
  • 1
    This was white quinoa.
    – Ian
    Feb 4, 2020 at 11:19

1 Answer 1


Over time, I noticed the same thing in various bags I had purchased from Natural Grocers. I used to just pick out the pink ones, worried they might have been contaminated with pink mold, but during the pandemic, when the store's stock was lower than usual, I didn't have any choice but to buy the bags with the pink-tinted quinoa--or to simply go without, which isn't much of an option for me, as I am on a very restricted diet as it is. So I asked the store buyer about it. He said he didn't know but he would ask the manufacturer. Eventually one day he had an answer for me. He said they splash a bit of pink dye in the flakes to mark each batch of their product. To be honest, at first I wasn't sure if I could believe it; for years I had been convinced it was actually a sign of spoilage. But I have allowed three unopened bags with the pink flakes to just sit on my shelf for perhaps several months now, and it doesn't look like the pink spots are spreading. So I figure that's a pretty good test of truth and that the pink quinoa, just like the rest of the batch, is safe to eat.

  • Thanks so much for the answer! I had forgotten I posted about this here. My girlfriend and I also ended up eating the pink-tinted quinoa during the pandemic with no noticeable problem.
    – Ian
    Jun 3, 2021 at 3:46

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