Monday, July 2, 2012

Meatless Mondays: Quinoa & Black Bean Fiesta Bowl

A light and tasty, meatless alternative to your typical burrito bowl.
We’ve already established that I believe most dishes benefit from the addition of avocado…and these Fiesta Bowls are no exception. The fresh-Mex combination of cilantro, lime juice, avocado, quinoa, and black beans is to-die-for-delish! Adapted from this Shiksa in the Kitchen post, the following recipe is perfect for Meatless Monday—or any day of the week!

Quinoa & Black Bean Fiesta Bowl
Serves 2-3

1 cup quinoa
½ cup cilantro, washed and stemmed
1 lime, juiced
2 cups Romaine lettuce, washed and shredded
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup corn
1 large tomato, chopped
½ medium yellow, red, or orange bell pepper, chopped
¼ cup onion, chopped
1 medium avocado, peeled, seeded, and chopped
2 tablespoons pico de gallo
2 tablespoons reduced-fat sour cream
Prepare quinoa according to package directions. Place cooked quinoa in a large bowl. Add cilantro and lime juice to a food processor and pulse a few times until cilantro is coarsely chopped. Scrape sides and dump cilantro lime mixture into prepared quinoa, mix well. In two (or three) serving bowls divide quinoa/lime mixture and begin layering the remaining ingredients on top. (Lettuce, beans, corn, tomato, bell pepper, onion, and avocado.) Garnish each fiesta bowl with a dollop of sour cream and a little pico de gallo and serve immediately.
The best part about this recipe is that you can leave out or add ingredients based on your preferences or what you have in the fridge/cupboard. Don’t have bell peppers or don’t care for corn? Don’t add them. Want to really spice it up? Add some diced jalapeños. Not feeling Meatless Monday? Throw in a little cooked chicken breast. The options are endless!

The Result:
This was one of the first dishes I tested when we implemented Meatless Mondays in our household. The hubs—initially skeptical that this meal would not be satisfying sans the meat—was pleasantly surprised by the taste and fact that it filled him up. The secret?  The quinoa and black beans are packed with protein and all the fresh veggies provide tons of good-for-you fiber. This meal is perfect for hot summer nights or any time you are craving a healthy, light Mexican-esque dish.

Until next time,

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