One-Pan Mexican Chicken Quinoa


The Christmas season is officially upon us!  Despite my efforts to slow down and savor the holidays, I feel like the time between Thanksgiving and New Year flies twice as fast.  But that doesn't stop me from continuing to cook nutritious meals for my family.  Here, to the rescue, is another one-pan dish.

This quinoa bowl is extremely versatile.  You can prepare it with a different meat as well as vary the vegetables and seasonings.  Even if you don’t have all the listed ingredients on hand or decide to omit something because it’s not a favorite, you will still end up with a delicious meal that won’t take very long to prepare.

2 Tbsp. butter
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno, minced
1.5 – 2 lbs. chicken thighs or breast (boneless, skinless)
1 cup uncooked quinoa (soaked in 2 cups of water for about 2 hours, drained)
1 cup water or chicken broth
1 can canned black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup organic corn kernels, frozen or canned
1 cup diced tomatoes, fresh or canned
1 medium onion, chopped
½ tsp cumin
Sea salt and pepper, to taste
Juice of 1 lemon or 2 limes

Melt the butter in a heavy pot or Dutch oven over medium heat.
Sauté the garlic and jalapeno in the butter until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Add the chicken and cook through for about 15 minutes, browning on both sides.
Stir in the quinoa, water or broth, black beans, corn, tomatoes, and onion.  
Season with cumin, salt, and pepper.
Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for about 30 minutes. 
Stir in the lemon or lime juice.
Before serving, garnish with your favorite salsa, fresh cilantro and avocado.

Enjoy and spend more time with the ones you love this holiday season!

Sprouted Quinoa Pizza Crust

We like our pizza like everyone else, so I’m always looking for wheat-free/gluten-free crust alternatives.  This is a quinoa crust recipe which I’ve made many times with great success.  I enjoy the nutty taste of this gluten-free seed, which actually belongs to the same family as beets, Swiss chard, and spinach.  Quinoa contains all nine essential amino acids, thus it is considered a complete protein. It also contains healthy monounsaturated and omega-3 fatty acids.  It is high in vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, B9 and E.  Quinoa is also a source of minerals such as iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, zinc, cooper and selenium.  To reap all the benefits of this healthy seed it needs to be soaked in water overnight.

For pizza toppings I used mozzarella, feta, tomatoes, red onions, olives and fresh arugula, which I added right as the pizza was coming out of the oven.  This recipe is from Henry Happened blog.

1 ½ cups quinoa, soaked overnight in water
½ cup water
1 tsp dried herbs of choice
½ tsp sea salt/pepper
½ tsp garlic power or 1 small garlic clove
2-4 Tbsp coconut oil

Preheat oven to 450 F.  Drain the soaked quinoa in a mesh sieve. Rinse well with fresh water. Place quinoa in a blender with ½ cup water, herbs, garlic, salt and pepper.  Blend until smooth. The batter should be thick but still pourable.  Line a baking sheet with well-oiled parchment paper (don’t skimp on the oil or the crust will stick).  Pour the batter onto the sheet and spread out to desired thickness.  Bake for 20-30 minutes.  Remove from oven and carefully flip the crust over.  Bake for an additional 15-20 minutes, or until desired crispiness.  Baking time will vary depending on the thickness of the crust.  Remove from oven, add desired toppings and return to oven for 5-10 minutes.  Remove from oven and let cool slightly prior to serving.