Kale Quinoa Marinara

Staying in the elegant Purdue Pride home of the McKinney’s, I had the honor to make my kappa sistah Caroline a delicious dinner, dietetics student approved!

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Kale Quinoa Marinara
Serves 2-3.
Takes 15 minutes
Here’s what you’re going to need:

8oz quinoa (I used an 8oz bag of Simply Balanced rainbow quinoa)
1 bunch curly kale
1 avocado
4 tomatoes
1 cup sun dried tomatoes (I used a 3.5 oz bag of Bella Sun Luci Halves)
4-5 garlic cloves (depending on size and preference)
2-3 tbs Italian seasoning (we didn’t have Italian so I used dried basil, thyme, rosemary, dill, and cilantro)
2/3 of a medium-large onion
9 pitted dates

Steps
1. Rinse quinoa.  Boil 1 3/4 – 2 cups of water to make quinoa. Once water is brought to a boil, pour in rinsed quinoa and turn down heat to medium. Let quinoa soak in all the water as it cooks. Takes about 10 minutes.
2. While that’s cooking, soak your sun dried tomatoes and dates by saturating them in warm water for about 5-10 minutes.
3. Put 3 of the 4 tomatoes in a high speed blender, chop the 4th tomato to add to the top of the dish later.  Add garlic, seasoning, onion, and by this time dates and sun dried tomatoes should be softened and ready to add to blender (do not add soaking water). Blend until smooth, unless you like it chunky!
4. Rinse, de-stem, and chop kale well.  Place chopped kale in a large bowl. By now, quinoa should be done cooking.  Put warm quinoa into bowl with kale. Pour fresh tomato marinara into bowl and mix well with chopped tomato and diced avocado.
5. Reap the benefits!!

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Kale is soo high in calcium, iron, protein, folic acid, vitamin K and even more vitamins and minerals! Quinoa is also very high in iron and is one of the two (soy is the other) plant sources of a complete protein amino acid ratio. Meaning, not only does quinoa have all of the essential amino acids, it has them in the ratio that the body needs and uses.  The vitamin C in the tomatoes helps the iron get absorbed quickly and easily, and the healthy plant based cholesterol free vitamin E rich avocado’s monounsaturated fat, helps the body to absorb the fat-soluble vitamin K. A fat free diet can lead to deficiencies in vitamins A, D, E, and K, because they are fat-soluble. Unlike B vitamins, vitamin C, and potassium that are water soluble. A little bit of fat and vitamin C with your salad can help to absorb fat soluble vitamins and iron!

This was the perfect post work out quick, satisfying, mouth watering meal! Eat clean, wake up lean! L&L ! 😉
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