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Mojito Lime Tilapia & Zesty Quinoa Salad

Mojito Lime Tilapia & QuinoaAlthough I’m not much of a fish lover, I have to admit, last night’s tilapia dinner was totally delish! It’s funny because this is something I just whipped together with little expectations.

If I had known it was going to turn out this good, I would have taken prettier pictures. So, instead, you get a pic of my dinner on paper plates – because, after a long hard day, that’s how I roll! Bonnie really doesn’t like to do dishes!

If you are new to Quinoa, read my blog:  Cooking with Quinoa.

Here’s what you will need…

Grill Mates mojito limeGrilled Tilapia:

  • Fresh Tilapia
  • Olive Oil
  • Lime Juice
  • Grill Mates Mojito Lime Seasoning
  • Italian Bread Crumbs

Coat the fish with olive oil and lime juice. Then, heavily season both sides of the fish, topping with a light sprinkle of bread crumbs to add a little bit of crunch. Place each piece of fish on the hot grill (I have a pan I use to grill fish) for approximately 4 minutes on each side. Since I like my edges crispy and a little charred, I turn my grill up at the last minute until I get the crispiness I want.

Zesty Black Bean & Corn Quinoa Ingredients: 

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1/2 can of Ro-Tel diced tomatoes with lime and cilantro
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 12-oz. can seasoned black beans, drained
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
  • 1 chopped green bell pepper
  • 2 finely chopped jalapeños
  • 1 cup corn kernels
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro (I was out, so I skipped this darn it!)
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (cuz ♪ some like it hot and some sweat when the heat is on ♫ )
  • sea salt or kosher salt and a bit of fresh cracked black pepper, to taste

For dressing

  • 5 tablespoons fresh lime juice, or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons ground cumin, or to taste
  • 1/3 cup olive oil (I cut mine with water, or skip it, to reduce calories)

Combine the black beans and vinegar and let sit. Once the quinoa is cooked, combine all the ingredients for the black bean and corn quinoa together (including the black beans). In a separate smaller bowl, combine the ingredients dressing and toss together until it is all well coated. I served this hot with the tilapia, but it is also amazing cold (which is how I will eat it for leftovers!) Since this is so good cold, you may want to double the ingredients so you are well stocked with leftovers like we do!

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Cilantro Lime Quinoa

Lately, I’ve really enjoyed adding Quinoa to meals. Here is what I whipped together last night that was totally delish, healthy and low calorie! Enjoy!

Cilantro Lime QuinoaIngredients:
1 Cup (uncooked) Quinoa
1 Medium Onion Chopped
2 Cloves Garlic
1 Can RoTel Cilantro & Lime Diced Tomatoes
1 Small Jalapeno
3/4 Cup Cilantro
1/2 Cup Scallions
1 Lime
Salt

Instructions:
Combine Quinoa with 2 cups water and bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes. Set aside and let stand for 5-10 minutes. Add all the other ingredients together and toss into Quinoa, finishing with 1 squeezed lime, then salt to taste. Serve hot. Extremely fresh tasting and yummy!!

Cali-Quinoa: Curried Black Bean & Mango Salad

Chicken, Black Bean & Mango Quinoa SaladYesterday I made a couple of amazing Quinoa salads for this week. I made a Mediterranean salad (which I’ll share later) and this delicious California inspired salad.

When I think of all the flavors that go in this salad, I can’t figure out for the life of me what to call it. I don’t feel like it’s truly “Mexican” cuisine. Maybe you can tell me where a dish like this originated.

The curry and mango almost give it a tropical flair. Personally, for me, it reminds me of California – or one of my beach days when I walked across the beach to grab a Diego salad with curry sauce from  Da Kine Diego’s Insane Burrito in Satellite Beach. Either way, as soon as this little salad hits my mouth, I guess my mind goes on vacation. No wonder I love this one!

I love the sweet with the spicy, and all the textures. This will definitely be one of those salads I bring to parties because all these yummy flavors are like having a party on your tongue!

Chicken, Black Bean and Mango Quinoa Salad

mango1 cup (uncooked) quinoa
Diced chicken (I cooked 3 breasts)
1 cup chopped mangoes
1/2 cup chopped
 cucumber
1 chopped onion
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
handful of torn cilantro
Salt

Dressing:

1/4 cup olive oil
 (you can dilute this with water to reduce calories)
4 Tbsp. white balsamic vinegar
1 tsp. honey
1 Tbsp. curry powder
1/2 tsp. cumin

Vidalia Chop WizardCook 1 cup of quinoa as directed (in 2 cups water for 15 minutes). I added a dash of salt and fajita seasoning. Remove from heat and let it to continue to steam (this makes it more fluffy). While cooking your quinoa, also cook your chicken and diced into small cubes. I cooked my chicken in lime juice, cumin and curry. While the hot food cools, start chopping up the cool ingredients. I use the Vidalia Chop Wizard and LOVE it! (Thanks Kristie – that’s a gift that keeps on giving!) In a separate bowl, combine the dressing ingredients. Finally, combine the quinoa and chicken with the fresh ingredients and drizzle the dressing over it while mixing it until it is all well coated. Salt to taste. It makes 6 delicious servings.

369 Calories per Serving

  • 21 gms Protein
  • 12 gms Fat (only 1.7gm saturated fat)
  • 45 gms Carbs
  • 6.9 gms Fiber

This is a perfect salad for people who don’t have access to a microwave during the day.

Ways to reduce calories and make it even healthier:

  • Use Stevia instead of honey
  • Use less (or no) oil
  • Use more chicken, and less quinoa

This recipe was inspired by Curried Quinoa Salad with Black Beans and Mango at Babble.com

CLICK HERE to learn more about Quinoa – including where to get it, great nutritional information and more!

Cooking with Quinoa: Turkey Meatloaf Recipe & More!

Steve and Bonnie PfiesterMy husband, Steve, LOVES him some meatloaf! It’s his favorite dish I make. And, for people who really don’t like the texture of meat, it’s a great way to get more protein in your diet when you are sick of chewing on chunks of meat. Even people who enjoy meat get sick of eating chicken sometimes you feel like if you have one more piece of dang chicken, you’ll SCREAM. That’s when it’s time to get your baking dishes out!

I would post more recipes, but the truth is, I rarely follow them. I make stuff up as I go. Monday I made Turkey & Quinoa meatballs and shirataki noodles with a sweet basal and spinach sauce. I have no idea what I put in it because I just added a dash of this, a dash of that and just played around until I liked what I tasted.

However, sometimes I like to follow recipes to get ideas. I rarely follow it to the T. Most of the time I double, triple or quadruple it (you would too if you were married to Steve Pfiester – that boy can EAT! haha). So, here’s the recipe I followed from Lazy LowCal Cookbook by Becky Clark to put Quinoa to the test. Result: SUCCESS!

I doubled this recipe, added a little more kick too it with the fresh jalapenos, and personalized the flavor with some of my favorite spices.

Turkey & Quinoa Meatloaf (from the Lazy LowCal Cookbook)

  • turkey & quinoa meatloaf1lbs Ground Turkey
  • 1/2 Cup Uncooked Quinoa
  • 1  Onion Diced
  • 7 oz Green Chiles
  • 2 Diced Jalapenos
  • 6 oz Can of Tomato Paste
  • 1 Tablespoon Minced Garlic
  • Seasonings (I used spices like Chili Pepper, Salt & Stevia to sweeten a little)

Cook your quinoa first, then add it to the rest of the ingredients. Mix it all together, put in your bakeware, and bake on 375 for 90 minutes. If you have your own favorite meatloaf recipe, use Quinoa instead of breadcrumbs. 🙂

LoseIt

loseit recipe builderPeople can normally handle looking up calories for whole foods, but it seems they “Lose It” when they start doing complicated recipes and casseroles. If you use a calorie management app (I like LoseIt) Managing calories from your favorite recipe is easier than you think. Simply add each ingredient (full amount for the whole recipe) into your lose recipe builder (located under More & Edit Foods & Exercises). The total calories will look huge – but remember, you have to set the number of servings for that meal.

So, divide the meatloaf into squares (or simply mark with a knife) when it cools and put the total number of squares in as number of servings to get the number of calories for each piece. It’s better to have smaller squares (and serve more than one piece), than to have large squares. This way you can have “snack-size” pieces that you can easily manage when you count calories. Also try using miniature cupcake pans instead of full baking dishes to make it even easier to serve and manage calories!

10 Servings: 153 calories, 1.4gm fat, 11.7gm carbs, 24.6gm protein, 2gm fiber.
8 Servings: 191 calories, 1.8gm fat, 14.6gm carbs, 30gm protein, 2.5gm fiber.

Turkey Meatloaf Wrap

Turkey Meatloaf WrapWhen I was a little girl, my mom made meatloaf sandwiches with leftover meatloaf. If you like that idea, then take it up a notch and try my healthier version.

  • 1 Healthy Grain Flat Out Wrap
  • Cold Meatloaf
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Tomato
  • Lite Mayo
  • Optional Burger style: Add onion, Mustard, Ketchup & pickles and heat the meatloaf

The lettuce adds a nice fresh crunch – and the whole thing stayed with me for several hours. Totally yummy!

Keenwaw

QuinoaI swear, everytime I go to say Quinoa I want to say Kuinoy. Keenwaw is how it is pronounced, and it’s a previously overlooked grain that is gaining popularity, and is a wonderful addition to a healthy meal plan. It was hard to find at the grocery store however. I searched several times before I finally found it. Mine is organic and it came in a bag and it looks like little round seeds. Some people have found it in the grain (rice) section, however, I found it by the flower, corn meal and stuff, in the Greenwise section at our Publix. If you can’t find it, find a grocery employee to help you locate it because I don’t think people really know where it is supposed to go yet. Also check the gluten-free section as a possibility.

Look at the Nutritional comparison between 1/1 cup of cooked quinoa (120 calories) and  1/2 cup of cooked instant long grain rice (180 calories).

quinoa rice2

In this particular brand of white rice, the protein appears to be the same, but if you are counting calories and compared 120 calories of quinoa to 120 calories of rice, the protein would be less for rice (approximately 2.7gms). Not only do you get to eat fewer calories, quinoa has all the essential amino acids, plus lysine which aids tissue repair (great for helping repair muscles). Quinoa is even more nutritious than brown rice, which is pretty darn nutritious.

Want to learn more about Quinoa vs Rice? Check out Brad Gouthro‘s video explanation. Good stuff from a fellow FitFluential Ambassador. 🙂

CLICK HERE for 20 Ways to Cook Quinoa from CookingLight.com

YUM!

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