Main Dishes featuring Grains and/or Beans

Summer Garden Quinoa Salad

Summer garden quinoa salad

This simple salad is somewhat akin to tabbouli, but it’s more about the ripe summer tomatoes and other garden veggies. It’s also a great way to use up leftover quinoa, so the amount used in the salad is flexible. Make sure to use the most flavorful summer tomatoes for best results! more→

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Quinoa with Edamame and Oranges

Quinoa with edamame and oranges pilaf

Tiny orange sections provide a surprising burst of sweetness in this high-protein grain dish. It’s flexible, too—use a different grain if you’d like (this is adapted from a rice dish in Vegan Express); use a different green other than bok choy (kale would work); and if you can’t find edamame or prefer not to use these tasty green soybeans, substitute green peas. It’s a great everyday kind of dish, and is festive enough to serve at special occasions. Photos by Hannah Kaminsky.
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Provençal Bean Stew

Provencal Bean Stew

This meatless version of a rustic Provençal stew, made with white beans, is sensual and satisfying. A fresh, crusty French baguette is perfect for soaking up its delicious broth. A bountiful tossed salad makes it a complete meal. more→

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Black Bean-Hemp Protein Patties

Black bean hemp protein burger by Julie Morris

These patties are packed with premium protein, essential fatty acids, iron, calcium, fiber, and trace minerals, and won’t contribute one bit to heart disease or diabetes, like animal-derived burgers do. Perfectly aligned spices celebrate three plant-based protein sources: black beans, hemp seeds, and quinoa. Recipe and photo contributed by Julie Morris. Reprinted with permission from Superfood Kitchen: Cooking with Nature’s Most Amazing Foods.* © 2012 by Julie Morris, Sterling Epicure, an imprint of Sterling Publishing Co., Inc.
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Polenta with Black Beans and Spinach

Polenta with Black Beans and Spinach

Prepared polenta provides an easy way to add variety to the dinner repertoire. I often use it sliced and sautéed as a side dish, but occasionally, it will become an intrinsic part of a recipe, as it is here, topped with a simple combination of black beans and spinach. Look for this kind of polenta in natural foods stores, as well as in supermarket Italian or gluten-free foods sections. This is also nice as a change-of-pace hot appetizer. Adapted from Vegan Express by Nava Atlas. Photos by Rachael Braun. more→

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Lentils with Spinach and Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Stewed lentils with spinach and bell pepper

Since my family loves lentils, I keep a few cans of organic canned lentils on hand to use when we want a meal with this nourishing legume in a hurry. If you prefer to cook your own, the dish will also come together in a snap if you have them cooked ahead of time. To make this dish a little fancier, try using beluga lentils. There diminutive, gleaming black lentils contrast attractively with the greens and dried tomatoes. Green or brown lentils will taste just as good, though they’re not as pretty. This is great served with Cauliflower Rice Pilaf, Quinoa with Cauliflower, Cranberries, and Nuts, or another grain dish, plus a simple salad.
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Hummus and Quinoa Wraps

Hummus and quinoa wrap recipe

This hummus and quinoa wrap, embellished with fresh and dried tomatoes and leafy greens is chock-full of flavor and protein. Once you have your quinoa cooked (actually, this is a good use for leftover quinoa), this comes together in minutes for an easy dinner or to take along to school or work for lunch. Serve with any sort of soup, a potato dish, salsa and chips, fresh corn — wraps go with most anything! more→

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Paella Vegetariana (Veggie-Filled Vegan Paella)

paella vegetariana (veggie-filled vegan paella)

Paella is a traditional Spanish rice dish cooked in a skillet, colored bright yellow by saffron, and filled with seafood. This vegan rendition focuses on veggies instead. It’s an easy dish to make, and the results are splendid. If saffron is hard to come by, this gives you the option of using turmeric instead. This goes well with a simple salad of mixed greens with orange sections, cucumber, and toasted almonds. In season, add a few slender asparagus stalks to the plate for a really gorgeous meal. For an even quicker version of veggie paella, see Quick Quinoa Paella.  more→

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