Mexican Quinoa Salad

While we are on the verge of winter (although winter is a relative term in Arizona), you’re probably thinking this would actually be a great dish in the summer. And I’m not gonna lie, it’s super refreshing and fabulous in the summer. But honestly, it’s too delicious to have at only one time during the year, which is why I’m sharing it now! This is great as a meal by itself, as a side, or even as a dip with some chips. Enjoy!

Mexican Quinoa Salad

Servings: 6

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cooked quinoa (I used Archer Farmers Steam-in-bag Frozen Quinoa, 10 oz, found at Target–so easy!!)
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 can corn, drained
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 small red onion, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper
  • black pepper, to taste
  • queso fresco or feta, for serving

Directions

  1. Mix together all of these wonderful ingredients and Voila, you have Mexican Quinoa Salad!
  2. Top with cheese for extra deliciousness 🙂

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size: ~1 cup with 2 tbsp. cheese
  • Calories: 340
  • Fat: 17g
  • –Saturated: 5g
  • –Polyunsaturated: 1g
  • –Monounsaturated: 7g
  • –Trans: 0g
  • Sodium: 765mg
  • Potassium: 170mg
  • Carbohydrates: 34g
  • Sugar: 6g
  • Fiber: 8g
  • Protein: 14g
  • Vitamin A: 20%
  • Vitamin C: 50%
  • Calcium: 5%
  • Iron: 20%

* This recipe was adapted from Swanky Dietitian, whose blog unfortunately no longer exists.

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Mexican Quinoa

If you need a quick, Mexican-inspired, delicious meal, this is the one! Flavorful and filling, you won’t go wrong with this dish. I’m a huge fan of Mexican food, and even though you wouldn’t find this at a restaurant, it will satisfy your craving! This dish also happens to be sitting in my favorite bowl. It’s polish pottery and it’s got flowers on it, and anyways it’s lovely. This meal deserves to be on nice dishes!! Enjoy 🙂

Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 jalapeño
  • 1 pkg quinoa/brown rice blend (like NearEast red pepper and basil)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 15oz can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 15oz can black beans (rinsed and drained)
  • 1 15oz can corn (drained)
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 avacado, peeled and diced
  • Juice of 1 lime

Directions

  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet or pot on medim heat. Add jalapeño and sauté for about a minute.
  2. Add remaining ingredients except for the lime juice and avacado and bring to a boil.
  3. Next, cover, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook for about 20 minutes or until all the water is absorbed.
  4. Then, add the avacado and lime and serve!

Nutriton Information

  • Calories: 405
  • Fat: 12g
  • Carbohydrates: 60g
  • Sugar: 5g
  • Fiber: 10g
  • Protein: 13g

*Recipe adapted from Damn Delicious, at http://damndelicious.net/2014/04/09/one-pan-mexican-quinoa/.

Mexican Lasagna with Homemade Enchilada Sauce

How do you feel about meat? When I told my brother there was not going to be any meat for dinner, he was rather upset.. he prefers to eat meat for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. I like meat too. However, I have a couple friends who are vegetarians, and I think it’s great. The future dietitian in me wants to make sure, however, that anyone who doesn’t eat meat is not only getting enough protein, but also iron and vitamin B12… Anyhow, reducing meat consumption can be better for the environment, the animals, and can even save money… At one point even I decided to go on a vegetarian kick for about 2 months, but I ended up resorting back to my old meat-eating ways rather easily. However, I think making at least one day out of the week “meatless” is reasonable, even if you’re a meat-lover. To my surprise, my brother even told me after dinner, “For something cheesy and vegetable-y and without any meat, it wasn’t too bad I guess.” If you knew my brother, you would understand why I took that as a compliment. Especially since he doesn’t like cheese (why I’ll never know–I don’t think I’ve ever met a person besides my brother with such a strong aversion to cheese).

Anyways, I hope you give this a shot. I was most impressed by how the enchilada sauce turned out–it was quick, easy, and flavorful–well worth the small extra effort.

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Mexican Lasagna with Homemade Enchilada Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 large red pepper, chopped, seeds removed
  • 2 small zucchini, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups corn
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 9 small corn tortillas
  • 2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Enchilada sauce (see recipe below)

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place red pepper, zucchini, corn, and onion in a roasting pan. Coat the vegetables with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast the vegetables for 30-40 minutes, until tender, stirring occasionally. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F when the vegetables are removed from the oven.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine roasted vegetables, black beans, cumin, chili powder, garlic, jalapeño, and cilantro. Stir and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Spread 1/4 cup of enchilada sauce into the bottom of the greased baking pan (I used a deep, 8×8 inch pan). Then layer like so…
  • 3 tortillas
  • Enchilada sauce
  • Half of the vegetable mixture
  • Enchilada sauce
  • 2/3 cup cheese
  • 3 tortillas
  • Enchilada sauce
  • Half of the vegetable mixture
  • Enchilada sauce
  • 2/3 cup cheese
  • 3 tortillas
  • Enchilada sauce
  • 2/3 cup cheese

For each tortilla layer, I split two tortillas in half and placed the flat edge of each half along the sides of the pan, and then placed one tortilla in the middle. Also, you can use as much enchilada sauce as you see fit, but I used about 1/4 cup for each layer. You will most likely have quite a bit leftover.

  1. Cover the pan with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted and the lasagna is bubbling. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes. Cut into squares and serve warm.

*This recipe was adapted from Two Peas and Their Pod “Roasted Vegetable Stacked Enchiladas”—the link found here: http://www.twopeasandtheirpod.com/stacked-roasted-vegetable-enchiladas/ 

Homemade Enchilada Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar, packed
  • 1 cup water
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium high heat, then whisk in flour until well combined.
  2. Whisk in the remaining ingredients, then bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce the heat and simmer until the sauce has slightly thickened. This should take about 10 minutes.
  4. The recipe yields about 4 cups and can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

*This recipe was adapted from Damn Delicious, the link found here: http://damndelicious.net/2014/03/17/homemade-enchilada-sauce/