October is Vegetarian Awareness Month — to help you celebrate, here’s a great quinoa recipe!
This post comes from our blog intern, Monica!
As a vegetarian, it can certainly be a challenge finding adequate protein and nutrients. Quinoa, as I’m sure many of you know, is a high-protein grain often referred to as the “Mother Grain,” packed with vitamins and minerals like calcium, vitamins B and E, iron and essential fats. Quinoa has been one of my go-to proteins since becoming a vegetarian six months ago.
This recipe is a long-standing favorite. It was a staple while growing up, and has stuck with me even while living on my own. It’s simple and refreshing, chromatic and vibrant, which is one of my favorite things about the dish. And, while colorful, it’s also extremely versatile! You can eat it alone, with chips or with leafy greens like kale or lettuce. My favorite way to eat it is with tortilla chips (it’s so shareable that way). It’s sort of a step up from the usual chips and salsa, nurturing you with protein from the quinoa and nutrients from fresh veggies and beans—much healthier than most store-bought salsas!
Vegetarian Mexican Quinoa Salad
1 Cup Quinoa
2 Cup Water
2-3 Freshly Juiced Limes
1/3 Cup Olive Oil
1 ½ Tablespoon Ground Cumin
1 Teaspoon Salt
1 ½ Cups Tomatoes (I used grape tomatoes and cut them into halves or thirds)
2 Cups Black Beans
7 Large Chopped Green Onions
1/3 Cup of Chopped Cilantro ( + a few sprigs of cilantro for garnish)
Optional: Cooked corn, either fresh or frozen. If you use frozen corn, you can thaw it by placing it in a strainer and running it under warm water for one minute.
Step 1: Cook Your Quinoa
Prepare your quinoa as directed on the box or package, adding two cups of water to a pot, one cup of quinoa, and bringing it to a boil. Cover and lower the heat to a simmer for as long as indicated — it can vary by quinoa brand, but typically it’s about 15 minutes. Once the quinoa is cooked, let cool or place in the fridge.
Step 2: Make the Dressing
While your quinoa is cooling, make the dressing. Add lime juice, olive oil, cumin and salt into a bowl and stir. You can set this aside for a minute while you prepare the next component.
Step 3: Wash and Prepare the Additions
Chop the tomatoes, green onions and cilantro, and rinse the beans and corn in a strainer. Mix it all in a large bowl, adding the cilantro last. Add your quinoa and dressing to the bowl, stirring to mix it all together. To store it, just keep in a sealed container. It can stay fresh for up to three days!
+What are your favorite vegetarian dishes? Let us know in the comments <3
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