The recipe I have for you today has two of my favorite things: a delicious fall food and quinoa. I have often extolled the virtues of quinoa. I've also talked about the wonder that is fall foods. Today's fall food is butternut squash, the deliciously nutty cousin of pumpkin.
If that bright orange color didn't give it away already, butternut squash is a fantastic source of Vitamin A. Vitamin A is important for our eyesight, as well as our immune system. Butternut squash is also a good source of fiber, potassium, and Vitamin C. All while being fairly low in calories (82 calories per cup of cubed squash).
You only need 1 cup of cubed squash for this recipe. I cut up and cooked a whole squash though (which gave me about 3 cups), and saved the rest of the squash for later in the week.
You can serve this quinoa pilaf all on it's own for a vegetarian dish. Or you can bake a couple of chicken breasts to go with it. I served it with chicken breasts basted with a mix of 2 tablespoons canola oil, 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, and 1 tablespoon maple syrup. That baste was more than enough to cover the 3 chicken breasts I was cooking.
Fall Quinoa Pilaf
1/3 cup dry quinoa
2/3 cup water
1 teaspoon canola oil
1 cup cubed butternut squash
2 loose cups chopped kale
Coriander to taste
Cook 1/3 cup of quinoa in 2/3 cup of water. Bring water and quinoa to a boil, then lower to simmer until all water is gone. Fluff quinoa with fork and put aside.
Heat oil in skillet over medium-high heat. Add squash and sprinkle with coriander. Cook until squash starts to soften, about 3-5 minutes. Add kale and mix until kale cooks down. Add quinoa and mix.
Serve with chicken or as a main dish.
Taryn is a Los Angeles based Registered Dietitian who's passionate about helping you be your healthiest you.