Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Vegan, Vegetarian

Keen on Quinoa for Brekkie

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This really does taste like cinnamon “toast” crunch! I had just under 1 cup of leftover cooked white/red quinoa from making Buddha bowls, so I thought I’d give this a try. I saw this idea on Cookie + Kate‘s Instagram before going to bed last night; it seemed like the perfect way to get through our 3 hrs of med surg morning lecture and still make it to an afternoon spin (since I haven’t gone in since end of August 🙈).  Fun fact: I like using nuts from Trader Joe’s; they’re much cheaper and more bang for your buck. What a power breakfast this was! The cinnamon and pecans were quite fragrant and added such a great flavor. I know what I’m making next time I have leftover quinoa — Toasted Cinnamon Pecan Quinoa for breakfast. Side note, I might have to try this in a slow cooker… 

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Asian, Better Than Takeout, Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Meal Prep, Salad, Vegetarian

Back to [Korean] BBQ

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I’d say this summer has been the summer of salads and bowls. Cooking Light had a great article on “How to Build a Better Grain Bowl” in one of their summer issues like the idea for the Vegetarian Korean BBQ Bowl. While not a true “Korean BBQ,” this incorporates different flavors like gochujang. Start with a grain base (cue the quinoa). Pack it fully of veggies. The key is different textures like carrots and scallions for crunch and then colors like the cabbage, purple cabbage and napa cabbage blend. Add some protein as a fried egg. (Let me digress for a moment. I have to admit. I wasn’t a fan of fried eggs, eggs over easy, poached eggs — really any egg with a runny yolk. But then, I rediscovered breakfast sandwiches and avocado toast and my breakfasts were complete. I wanted to take a stab at this recipe just for the egg.) Finally, the Korean aioli binds the dish, packs in the flavor and tops it to perfection. The best part? It maybe took 10 min to throw this together (assuming the quinoa is already cooked). I’m just dying for my leftovers.

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Meal Prep, Salad, Side, Vegan, Vegetarian

Celebrate Summer with a Summer Quinoa Salad

IMG_2522.JPGSummer’s officially here! Sadly, my apartment lacks a grill, but I was inspired by a recipe in Cooking Light for a charred Brussels sprouts, radish and apple salad. Why not char some pineapples and peppers to give the feeling of grilled summer kabobs? It’s fresh, easy and simple — my kind of style. I went to Martha’s Vineyard to do a home visit for work since we visit participants in their homes for healthy aging and longevity research. As we killed time for our ferry back to Boston, we feasted on our lunches. How picturesque — eating Charred Bell Pepper & Pineapple Quinoa Salad by the water. Happy meatless Monday!

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Italian, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Vegan, Vegetarian

Blissfully Stuffed After Quinoa Stuffed Bell Peppers

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These Quinoa Stuffed Bell Peppers are when you want something satisfying without the sensation that you just swallowed a brick; they’re like a hearty salad that is way more fun.  I’ve seen these gracing the pages of Instagram and Pinterest, and turned to the Moosewood Restaurant in Ithaca, NY for inspiration. (They’re dedicated to the vegetarian movement.) The resulting roasted bell peppers were quite tender and juicy. I topped with tomato sauce for some added flavor. I also made wayyyyy too much quinoa veggie filling and “recycled” it with chicken sausage and over sautéed baby spinach. I definitely want to try a carnivore version — ground turkey? BBQ chicken for the summer? Southwestern beef? I see a Thai version and a Mexican version being taste-tested in the near future.

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Italian, Lightened Up, Meal Prep, One Pot Dish, Soup, Vegan, Vegetarian

Easy Peasy Hearty Minestrone Stew

Quinoa Minestrone Stew

This stew is brilliant. My cousin, Betsy, always shares healthy and hearty recipes with my mom. We made this stew last winter after Betsy’s suggestions. After all the holiday indulgences (and over-eating), we decided to resurrect this veggie, vegan, gluten-free stew. Although technically a soup, it’s loaded with beans, carrots, celery, tomatoes, peppers, zucchini, kale . . . the list goes on and is so hearty I’d like to swap the name from soup to stew. While my mom did all the cooking, it’s delicious to share, especially right before the New Year. Hope you enjoy this fresh, packed fully of veggies, you-won’t-go-hungry Quinoa Minestrone Stew.

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Meal Prep, Salad, Vegan, Vegetarian

Jazzed Up Beans & Rice

Bean & Quinoa with Mango Salsa

I just came home from a long weekend in the Sunshine State, where I had the most delicious honey mango and a southwestern-inspired salad; although two separate events, the pair seemed like they could go well together. Thus, I give you Beans & Quinoa with Mango Salsa. A quick, simple spin on traditional Beans & Rice, but packed with flavor: sweet from the mango salsa, fresh from the chopped cilantro and spicy from the red pepper. Top over quinoa, black beans and avocado and you’d never know you only used six ingredients for the tastiest bowl. (You can even scoop it all up with some tortilla chips for a crunch.)

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Low Sugar, Vegan, Vegetarian

Craving Quinoa for Breakfast

Vanilla Quinoa Breakfast Bowls

I saw this recipe on Skinny Taste at the end of last fall and I was a bit skeptical. Quinoa, at least red quinoa, has that bitter taste to it. I wasn’t sure how it would perform as a breakfast dish. I think we can all agree I’ve explored the oatmeal and steel-cut oats options quite thoroughly, so I thought why not give it a try? Plus, it’s a different gluten-free breakfast option. Cutting the quinoa directly in almond milk, vanilla, cinnamon and agave could the quinoa a different twist from its bitter profile. Add fresh fruit and bam! The Vanilla Quinoa Breakfast Bowls were born.

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Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Salad, Side, Vegan, Vegetarian

Craving a Cranberry Quinoa Salad

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This Cranberry Quinoa Salad is vibrant, fresh and intensely colorful. Something about citrus and cranberries screams the holidays. This salad is a fresh take on the classic dish of cranberries and oranges. The sweet pomegranate seeds and orange wedges balance the tart cranberries. The quinoa adds sustenance, while the fresh mint adds flavor. Pair with a roasted chicken (we had orange-citrus and rosemary marinade with this salad and fresh butternut squash), add in nuts for more of a meal, or enjoy with a cup of soup. This salad is a perfect addition to your holiday entertaining — even the colors beckon you to add this to your entertaining arsenal, lunch rotation or just as a fun, colorful and delicious side to any meal.

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Local Finds, Salad, Vegan, Vegetarian

Upgrade Your “Salad”

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Farmer’s Market finds make the perfect salad. Upgrade your salad for something fresh, different and a little bit exciting. The walnuts and quinoa add crunch and texture to the salad, while the fresh mint, fizz kale, apples and strawberries add a layer of freshness and a straight-from-the-garden taste. Toss the ingredients together with some olive oil and white balsamic vinegar and viola! A deliciously upgraded summer salad.

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Lightened Up, Meal Prep, Salad, Vegan, Vegetarian

Let’s Taco ‘Bout Taco Salads

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I’m obsessed with avocados. I’ll find any excuse to incorporate them into a dish, I love that meal that much more. But here, the avocados were just begging to be added to something great. Something different from my normal dinners, but something fresh and perfect for the heat spell. With some cilantro on hand among other things, a Quinoa Taco Salad emerged.

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