Quinoa was of great nutritional importance in pre-Columbian Andean civilizations, secondary only to the potato, and was followed in importance by maize. Currently, quinoa has become highly appreciated for its nutritional value, as the protein content can be as high as 18%. Unlike wheat or rice, and like oats, quinoa contains a balanced set of essential amino acids for humans, making it an unusually complete protein source among plant foods. It is a good source of dietary fiber, phosphorus and is high in magnesium and iron. Quinoa is gluten-free and considered easy to digest. Easy to prepare too.