Quinoa with Lentils and Veggies
This dish is packed with protein and fiber, so you can feel full while loading up on some plant-based foods, like veggies, lentils and grains. Using zucchini, bell pepper, spinach, mushrooms, onions and garlic, this staple packs in flavor, along with a ton of vitamins and minerals. Also, this dish is amazing to have as leftovers – serve it hot the first time and then serve it cold days later with some crumbled feta cheese. Craving some extra protein? I’ve also made this dish using tofu in combination with the lentils, for a heartier meal.
Ingredients (serves 5):
1 C quinoa, uncooked
3/4 C lentils, cooked (I like to use lentils that are pre-cooked and vacuum packed. These usually just require 2 minutes in the microwave, or can even be eaten out of the package, cold – just watch out for the sodium content!)
1 medium zucchini squash
1 red bell pepper
2 C spinach, raw
1 small onion (about 1 C chopped)
2 C mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves garlic
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
dash salt (depending on how much salt you prefer)
dash cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1 Tbsp butter (or Smart Balance or other butter alternative)
1.5 Tbsp olive oil
1. Cook quinoa according to instructions on box (*note: you may choose to replace the water with low-sodium vegetable broth, which also tastes really good! If you do this, you do not need to add the 1 Tbsp butter – this is used to enhance the flavor when the quinoa is cooked with water)
2. Warm olive oil in large saucepan over medium heat.
3. Chop onion, bell pepper, mushrooms and mince garlic. Add onion to saucepan and cook for 2 minutes. Add bell pepper, mushrooms and spices (black pepper, salt, cayenne and garlic powder) and cook another 8-10 minutes. Add garlic.
4. Microwave lentils in microwave-safe bowl according to directions -usually about 2-4 minutes. (*note if you are soaking your own lentils you can omit this step).
5. Add spinach and sauté until wilted, about 2-3 minutes. Add cooked quinoa and lentils to saucepan and cook another 2-3 minutes. Serve hot (or chill in the refrigerator and serve cold!)
The Goods: What’s Inside?
Nutritional Analysis Per Serving
Calories 320, Fat 8 g, Saturated Fat 1 g, Cholesterol 0 mg, Carbohydrates 51 g, Fiber 12 g, Protein 13 g, Calcium 42, Sodium 70 mg