Thursday, April 5, 2012

Quinoa Mac & Cheese

First of all, I have Shape Magazine to thank for this brainiac idea. In their March issue this year they have a whole section on lightening up hearty meals. I can't wait to try their French Onion Soup and Chicken Pot Pie recipes. Using quinoa instead of pasta in this dish provides you with more nutrients and is a great gluten-free option.

I found myself  thinking about my grocery list one Monday at work (when I didn't have a chance to get to the store that weekend) and I didn't have my magazine with me so I resorted to the internet to find the recipe. Surprisingly, I couldn't find the recipe anywhere on Shape's website! It was the weirdest thing. And I kept thinking, I must be looking in the wrong spot, or using the wrong search term. Who knows. All I know is that I personally could not find it.

So I did the next best thing and resorted to Google. Lucky for me, many people out there have made this dish and have shared their recipe. Thank you Good Clean Fun Eating for an easy to follow and surprisingly delicious Quinoa Mac & Cheese recipe! I say surprisingly because even with homemade mac and cheese, it's sometimes not as cheesy/salty as I'd like. But the cheesy flavor of this dish is spot on.

I followed the recipe as provided here. My only tweak being that I decided to add 1/2 cup of Trader Joe's organic frozen spinach into the mixture when it was time to add the shredded cheese. And next time, I plan on adding 1 full cup. Nothing like adding a few greens to a meal. And already having frozen spinach on hand, why not?

Ok, here is my go at Quinoa Mac & Cheese through pictures.

The necessary ingredients

Whisk together milk, egg, garlic, parmesan, cream cheese, yogurt, salt and pepper

Add mixture to quinoa once cooked (*cooked with skim milk & water), add cheese

Toss in some frozen spinach to be healthy

Pour into casserole dish

Cover with more cheese

Drool over the finished product

Enjoy. :)

With the way our work schedules currently are, I find it a whole lot easier and less stressful if I can prepare a meal ahead of time that J can stick in the over while I'm on my way home from work. The week I decided to make quinoa mac and cheese also happened to be the week of 80 degree heat here in Boston. Not a great combo.... I prepped this on a Wednesday night and put the uncooked casserole in the fridge for the night with plans of having J pop it into the oven Thursday night. 80 degree weather and living on the top floor of our building do not always bode well for us. And there was no way in H E double-hockey-sticks I was running the oven for 40 minutes. 

So in the fridge the casserole stayed until I cooked it up Friday morning while getting ready for work. And it was a perfect lunch to bring to work. And was still delicious when we snacked on it Saturday too. I really can't wait to make this again. I may make it as more of a side dish next time with some BBQ chicken or something similar as the main protein source, we'll see.

1 comment:

  1. Trace, I did a post on this today! Whoops! I think this is where I originally saw the recipe haha. Anyways, it was delicious, thanks for sharing!


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