Tag Archives: Quinoa

Cold Slow Cooker Chicken With Mango, Avocado, Spinach, Tomatoes, Peppers, and Quinoa

Yes, that’s a mouthful of a title, but it’s a flavor explosion in your mouth too!!

I tend to forget about my slow cooker in the summer, because…hot!  BUT…the biggest reason I use my slow cooker is because of it’s convenience factor.  THAT is needed all year round!

The other day, I knew I’d be running around all day and wouldn’t be getting home until right around dinner time.  Slow cooker to the rescue.

What you need…

  • 4-5 Chicken Breasts (I actually threw mine in frozen!)
  • 1 Medium yellow onion  diced
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1/4 Teaspoon crushed garlic
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Crushed Ginger
  • 1 Cup Organic Mango Nectar
  • 1 Large Mango
  • 1 Large Avocado
  • 1 Cup diced peppers (I used a yellow, orange, and red)
  • 1 Cup Cherry or grape tomatoes.  I used multi colored ones.
  • 4-5 cups baby spinach
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1 Cup uncooked quinoa

What you do…

  • Put Olive Oil, Garlic, Ginger, and Onion down and mix.
  • Lay Chicken Breasts on top.  Mine were frozen.  I’m sure if they were thawed, they might just be more tender!  BUT…if you don’t have time (as I never do)  you can put them in frozen as an FYI…
  • Pour the cup of Mango nectar (honestly, you could use orange juice too!  It all cooks away…
  • Here’s the odd/specific timing part.  You can totally mess around with this timing depending on when you will be home!  I started this in the morning.  Cooked it on high for 4 hours.   I added the quinoa about 30 minutes before it was done.   Then took the chicken out, chopped it (probably could have shredded it had it been on low for longer!).  I added the chicken back in to soak up a little more juice.
  • While it was still in warming mode, and right before I took it out, I added all the spinach and tossed it around.
  • Then I took it all out and placed it in a bowl to cool for a few hours.
  • Either earlier when it’s cooking or later depending on when you have time.  Dice the mango, avocado, peppers, and tomatoes.
  • Add all the diced fruits and vegetables on top, salt and pepper to taste, and serve!


4 Ingredient Protein Packed Pancakes (gluten free)

These were a total spur of the moment “I have stuff that’s going bad, and I should probably make something!” recipe.

I had made a quinoa dinner earlier in the week that I’ll hopefully post soon (practically a one pot easy meal!)  So…why am I posting this before that?   was that good!!  And more importantly…THAT EASY!  Oh, and should I mention-HEALTHY?!

Because this was that good!!  And more importantly…THAT EASY!  Oh, and should I mention-HEALTHY?!

When it’s a trifecta, I know I should blog it!  Ok, when it’s a trifecta, and I actually take pictures, I know I should blog it 🙂 

What you need… (makes 20 mini pancakes or 10 medium)

  • One overripe banana
  • One cup cooked quinoa
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened Almond Milk
  • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)

What you need to do…

  • Mash the banana, add everything else, and mix a lot (baby got back! ok, nevermind…)

blog-4-ingredient-protein-packed-gluten-free-pancakes-2 blog-4-ingredient-protein-packed-gluten-free-pancakes-3She’s usually up for being my baking assistant, but not always the willing photography assistant.  Totally understandable since it was first thing in the morning  🙂blog-4-ingredient-protein-packed-gluten-free-pancakes-4 blog-4-ingredient-protein-packed-gluten-free-pancakes-5Above are Tablespoon mini pancakes for Maya, which she’s flipping (and are pictured stacked later)

Below are the 1/4 cup pancakes that I ate (as well as a few of her mini ones :)).
blog-4-ingredient-protein-packed-gluten-free-pancakes-6The mini ones were easier to photograph, and….could she be a better assistant???!! blog-4-ingredient-protein-packed-gluten-free-pancakes-8

Just for kicks, I entered everything into VeryWell.com.  If you eat the entire batch, it’s less than 500 calories and has 20 grams of protein!  Honestly, they were so filling, I ate half the batch myself, and then worked out.  I was totally satisfied until lunch!  Normally, I eat a lot more of-to be honest…processed calories usually, and am not as satisfied.  Lesson to be learned.  But, let’s be real.  This was super simple, easy, and quick to do, but…it wasn’t as quick as grabbing something with no clean up.  I GET IT!  I’ll let you know if they toast well haha.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 (423g)
Per Serving % Daily Value*
Calories 458
Total Fat 13.6g 21%
Saturated Fat 2.9g 15%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 327mg 109%
Sodium 160mg 7%
Potassium 564mg 16%
Total Carb 66.9g 22%
Dietary Fiber 8.2g 33%
Sugars 15.1g
Protein 20.5g


Grilled Orange Chicken with Onions and Quinoa

Last week I posted a recipe for a easy, refreshing, delicious Clementine Goat Cheese Salad.  I mentioned in that post, that I made this dish to go with it, and here it is!

I rarely use recipes (ironic, no?!), but one thing I love doing, is repeating flavors in the different dishes of the meal.  I used the same flavors in the chicken, the quinoa, and also the salad.  It cuts down on needing a bunch of different ingredients, and makes everything go so well together!

blog-orange-onion-chicken-and-quinioa-1This tastes great on it’s own, but even better when paired with the salad… blog-orange-onion-chicken-and-quinioa-2

What You Need… (feeds 4)

  • 4  Chicken Breasts
  • 1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Tsp Minced Garlic
  • 1 Sprig of Rosemary or 1 Tablespoon
  • 1 Medium sized Orange
  • 1 medium sized onion
  • 1 Cup uncooked Quinoa (Omit or sub out with cauliflower rice for Paleo/Whole 30 option)
  • Sea Salt and Pepper to taste.

What You Do…

  • Pour Olive Oil, Garlic, Rosemary, and juice from half the orange, into a small bowl and stir.
  • Take 2/3rds of the liquid and pour over chicken breasts in a large bowl or zip lock bag.  Slice the other half of the orange and place inside bag/in bowl.  Salt and Pepper to taste.  Let that all marinate for 30+ minutes.  If you want to do this in the morning and let it marinate in the refrigerator all day…even better!
  • Slice Onion in 1/2 inch slices and drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper.
  • Light your grill to medium heat and let it get hot.
  • Take quinoa and either place in a rice cooker (what I did) and add left over 1/3rd mixture from above and cook.  It’s usually done in 20 minutes.
  • Or, if you don’t have a rice cooker, cook on stove top with 2 cups water plus added 1/3rd left over mixture.  Bring to a boil.  Lower heat and let it cook covered for another 15 minutes.  Let it sit for another 5 minutes covered but with the heat turned off.  Fluff it up.
  • While Quinoa is cooking place chicken, onions, and orange slices on the grill.  Cook on each side for 7-8 minutes (depending on breast size).
  • Layer quinoa in a serving dish (I drizzled a little of the salad dressing over the top, but you could just drizzle with a little olive oil), then top with chicken, onions, and oranges.



4 Ingredient Quinoa + Sun Butter + Maple Syrup + Hemp Seed Protein Balls

I may be alone here, but I don’t think I am.  As a busy mom, granola bars/protein bars are kind of a must to survive.  Both for us and our kids!!  Grab on the go.  Or in between snack that you want to feel ok giving them, BUT…so many have a LOT of ingredients that you may or may not be ok with, but you do it anyways, because….SURVIVAL.  And…they can be really expensive if you don’t buy them in bulk.  I’ve been dying to make my own, but it seemed like a LOT of work.  SO….I abbreviated my efforts and went simple.  As I do… 😉

One day, I’ll blog about a simple, inexpensive, healthy protein bar, but until then… 😉

These are not a dessert, although, I convinced Maya they were for a few nights haha.  More like a healthy snack to tide you over 🙂Blog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-1 Blog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-2Ingredients (Made 34 Balls)

  • 1 Cup uncooked Quinoa
  • 6 Tablespoons Sun Butter
  • 1/4 Cup Organic Pure Maple Syrup
  • 6 Tablespoons Hemp Seeds (for rolling-btw, OBSESSED with Hemp Seeds right now!!  If you’re interested in the health benefits, read here.  Oh, and they’re yummy!)

(All these ingredients I found at Costco.  NOT in any way sponsored, but just an easy “Mama cooking for the masses” FYI ;))


  • Cook Quinoa as directed (I did mine in my rice cooker and it took me 30 seconds of prep, but about 30-45 minutes to wait :))
  • Stir in Sun Butter and Maple SyrupBlog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-3 The reward of licking the measuring cup…who could deny such a thing??!!Blog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-4 Blog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-5 Blog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-6
  • Take 1 Tablespoon amounts and form into balls
  • Roll the balls in hemp seeds.Blog Quinoa Sun Butter Hemp Seed Protein Balls-7
  • Refrigerate for an hour in a air tight container and store for future snacking 🙂



Baked Acorn Squash Stuffed with Quinoa, Apples, and Chicken Sausage

I’m an equal opportunity gourd lover!  I’ve been itching to make an acorn squash meal, and when I saw them at Costco when was there earlier this week, I pulled the trigger.  I honestly just made this up as I went along with ingredients that I had on hand.  I ended up adding the Craisins and avocado in at the end because I wanted more color for the pictures haha.  BUT…it tasted amazing, so I’m so glad I did!Blog Baked Acorn Squash Stuffed with Quinoa Apples Chicken Sausage-4eIngredients (feeds 4)

  • 3 Teaspoons Coconut Oil (half for the squash/half for the quinoa mixture)
  • 3 Teaspoons Organic Pure Maple Syrup (half for the squash/half for the quinoa mixture)
  • 2 Acorn Squash
  • 1 Cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1/2 medium size sweet onion
  • 1 medium apple- I used HoneyCrisp because they’re on SALE at Costco for 1.27 per lb!!
  • 1/2 Teaspoon crushed garlic
  • Sea salt and Pepper to taste
  • 4 Aidells Chicken and Apple Sausages
  • 1/4 Cup Craisins
  • 1 Small Avocado


For Squash

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • Fill baking pan with about 1/2 inch of water
  • Cut Acorn Squash in half, and lightly coat each with 1/2 teaspoon coconut oil, 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup, and freshly ground sea salt/pepper
  • Place in oven for an hourBlog Baked Acorn Squash Stuffed with Quinoa Apples Chicken Sausage-1

For Quinoa Mixture

  • Place the uncooked quinoa, 2 1/2 cups of water, 1 tsp coconut oil, 1 tsp maple syrup, 1/2 teaspoon crushed garlic, diced apple, and 1/2 diced onion and a few grinds of sea salt and pepper all in a rice cooker (I tend to use my rice cooker like a “fast” slow cooker-dump a bunch of stuff in and voila haha.)  Start it cooking, and dice up the Aidell’s sausages.  Towards the end of the quinoa cooking (about 20 minutes), dump the sausage in as well as the 1/4 cup craisins.Blog Baked Acorn Squash Stuffed with Quinoa Apples Chicken Sausage-10ceEnjoy!dit-elle-Lauren

Banana Quinoa Muffins (4th of July edition :)) // Gluten Free and DELICIOUS

This is my 3rd time making these since I first made them about 3 weeks ago haha.  Our neighborhood has this huge parade, and I thought these would be perfect for before hand (ok, and after too!)  I doubled the recipe from my first attempt, and added some blueberries, craisins, and shaved coconut to the top to make them more festive 🙂Blog Gluten Free Banana Quinoa Muffins 4th of July-1Blog Gluten Free Banana Quinoa Muffins 4th of July-2Blog Gluten Free Banana Quinoa Muffins 4th of July-3Hope everyone has a happy and safe 4th!

Ingredients (Made 21 muffins)

  • 2 Cup cooked Quinoa
  • 4 fully ripe bananas
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoon Coconut Oil
  • 4 Eggs
  • 3 Medjul Dates (pitted)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure Vanilla
  • 3 grinds of Sea Salt (aka not very much :))
  • 1/2 cup blueberries, craisins, and coconut to sprinkle on top (optional)


You can do all of it in the Cuisinart or mixing bowl.  One dish-easy clean up-WIN!!Blog Gluten Free Banana Quinoa Muffins-2

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Throw everything into a Cuisinart/Mixer and blend until creamy.
  • Put into muffin tins, greased loaf, or greased ramicans (that’s what I used the first time)
  • After 5 minutes of baking, take out and sprinkle with blueberries, craisins, and coconut.  I waited too long and the top was already too cooked.  They barely stuck, but I wanted them to sink into the muffin a little bit.
  • Bake for a total 18-20 minutes or until top is firm and lightly golden.  I’m a firm believer in slightly undercooking when baking.  It will continue to bake after you take it out, so if you wait until it’s completely firm it’s too done.  You can always do the toothpick test.  Insert a toothpick and if it comes out clean, it’s done.  If it has batter still on it, not yet done.
  • Sprinkle with unsweetened coconut flakes.
  • These are really moist.  I’m not sure why.  They don’t do well if you seal them up in a container, so just leave them out and they will not dry out.


Nutritional Facts (I entered all the ingredients into Calorie Count)

Serves 21 //  Calories per muffin- 120 // Total Fat- 4.1g // Saturated Fat- 2.5g // Cholestererol- 55mg // Sodium- 99mg // Potassium- 198mg // Total Carbohydrates-20.2g // Dietary Fiber-2.1 // Sugars- 9.6g // Protein- 3.4g


No Bake Almond Quinoa Balls // Gluten Free

Here’s my 3rd recipe using quinoa in “baking”.   FYI, I made the  Banana Quinoa Muffins again but doubled them this time! 🙂  Not to leave the No Bake Lemon Coconut Quinoa Balls out, but they weren’t as big of a hit in my immediate household (sorry Mom!)  My 17 year old said “These taste like healthy cake pops.”  I’ll take it!! 🙂

Once again, the best part of this next recipe is that after you have made a batch of quinoa, the rest is no bake/aka easy!!Blog No Bake Gluten Free Almond Quinoa Balls-1 Blog No Bake Gluten Free Almond Quinoa Balls-2

Ingredients (Made 15 Balls)

  • 1 Cup cooked Quinoa
  • 1/2 Cup Almonds (for rolling)
  • 1/2 Cup Natural Almond Butter (could also use peanut butter)
  •  2 Bananas
  • 4 Medjul Dates


You can do all of it in the Cuisinart.  One dish-easy clean up-WIN!!

  • Pulse almonds until they are the size of half a grain of rice (or look like quinoa! :), sprinkle on a plate for rolling later)
  • Blend Almond Butter, Bananas, and dates.
  • Add in quinoa and pulse a few more times, just to mix it all together.
  • Take a heaping Tablespoon and form balls in your hand (mine were about 1.5 inches wide).
  • Roll in crushed almonds and place in the freezer.  You can eat them frozen, but they are best after warming up a few minutes.


Nutritional Facts (I entered all the ingredients into Calorie Count)

Serves 15 //  Calories per ball-114 // Total Fat- 6.5g // Saturated Fat- .6g // Total Carbohydrates-12.4g // Dietary Fiber-1.9 // Sugars- 6.2g // Protein-3.1g