Quinoa (pronounced keen-wa) is an ancient grain dating back over five thousand years to the Inca civilization of South America.
The Incas referred to this beautiful grain as the “Supergrain” because of its’ unique qualities. It contains more high quality protein than any other grain and its one of the best sources of protein in the vegetable kingdom. Quinoa also contains no gluten, which is great for gluten intolerant people, plus it’s easy to digest.
If you are a vegetarian, or simply want to take a break from eating meat, this is a super-food alternative not only because of the protein from the quinoa, but the other important vitamins and nutrients you will receive from this meal.
The peppers provide vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin B6 and folate. They also contain certain enzymes that provide anti-cancer benefits for the reduction of esophageal and gastric cancers. Plus, when they are roasting, you can smell their beautiful aroma, it’s so sweet.
Since I love, love cheese, I added some of my favorite, Fontina cheese on top, but you can omit this and keep this recipe strictly vegan.
On the flip side, if you really want meat, just brown some ground turkey, beef or veal and add it into the recipe. There are no rules, it’s all about what you enjoy, and eating healthy. Enjoy!
Quinoa Stuffed Bell Peppers
Ingredients: Serves 2
- 2 bell peppers, choose your favorite colors, I chose 1 red and 1 orange
- 1 cup cooked quinoa
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 small carrot, peeled and finely chopped
- 1/4 cup green zucchini, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup yellow zucchini, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup organic dried raisins
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- salt and pepper to season
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Soak the dried raisins in some warm water.
Make the quinoa according to directions. It’s usually 1 cup quinoa to 2 cups water.
Heat the olive oil in a sauce pan. Add the onion and garlic and saute over a medium low heat for about 7 minutes. Add the carrots and continue cooking for another 4 minutes. Drain the raisins. Add the zucchinis and raisins to the onions and cook for about 5 more minutes. make sure you stir/ mix frequently.
Add in the cumin, cinnamon, salt and pepper and mix through. Add the quinoa and mix to incorporate.
Take the peppers and slice in half. Remove the seeds and any pith. Stuff each half of the pepper with the quinoa filling.
Using a baking dish with sides, place the filled peppers in the dish. Add about 1/4 inch of water in the dish. If you are using cheese, add the cheese on top of the peppers. Cover loosely with foil. bake for about 60 minutes. Remove and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Remove foil and enjoy