I’ve been spinning a lot lately. It’s become somewhat of an addiction. I never did any kind of cardio regularly before so it’s a great introduction to the euphorea endorphins can provide. Spinning has also increased my appetite, tenfold. When I get home, I’m ravenous and it’s important to have healthy food available to nosh on right away. Enter quinoa bowls.
Quinoa bowls are protein-packed and fun to play around with. If you cook up a base of ingredients, you can keep them in the refrigerator for three to four days and mix and match as you please. This one celebrates all of the amazing produce in season now. Feel free to substitute any or come up with an entirely different combination of your own. Think grilled chicken, avocado, corn and cilantro or sliced beef with scallions, sesame and thai chili oil. The combinations are endless. Start playing.
Note: The best way to ensure a great texture for your quinoa is to spread it out on a parchment-lined sheet pan just after all of the water is absorbed. This will prevent it from losing it’s pleasant, firm texture. Too much exposure to heat and moisture from condensation in the pan can make it soggy.
- 1 cup quinoa (I used Inca Red but you can use any kind) cooked according to package instructions*
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
- kosher salt and black pepper
- 2 lb butternut squash, peeled and cut into ¾" cubes
- 5 oz baby spinach
- 1 clove garlic, sliced thinly
- ½ pomegranate, seeded
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees and spread cubed butternut squash on a baking sheet. Toss with 2 tbsp olive oil, salt and pepper to taste and roast, tossing halfway through, until golden brown and beginning to caramelize, about 35-40 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly.
- Heat 1 tbsp olive oil and sliced garlic clove In a large, straight sided sauté pan until garlic is fragrant and beginning to sizzle (but not brown). Add spinach and toss 3-4 times, until coated with garlic oil. Remove from heat and continue to toss about 1-2 minutes, until just wilted. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Toss quinoa with roasted butternut squash, spinach and top with pomegranate. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper, if needed. All ingredients can be made ahead, stored separately and eaten cold.