Vegetarian Tex-Mex Quinoa Bowl

Have you jumped on the quinoa bandwagon yet?  Well, I have.  And considering my love for rice, using quinoa in place of rice is something I never thought I would agree to.  But these days, I have quinoa on hand and rice is nowhere to be found in my cabinet.  I still love my rice but quinoa is just so darn good for you that I can’t let myself not eat it.  Mixing quinoa with bold flavors, like in this Vegetarian Tex-Mex Quinoa Bowl, is a great way to eat it.

Quinoa takes on the spicy flavors of the taco seasoning very well so even if you aren’t sure if you like quinoa, this is a good way to try it.  Mixed with soy crumbles, black beans, corn, tomatoes, and jalapeño, this quinoa bowl is fresh, spicy, and filling.  I love the texture and flavor of the soy crumbles in this dish.  I started eating soy crumbles when I was a vegetarian but still eat it now in place of meat all the time.  Sometimes I even prefer it in certain dishes over meat (like taco salad and Cheeseburger Macaroni Hamburger Helper – seriously!).  It’s full of protein and lower in fat, making it a great pairing with quinoa.  But if you don’t want to venture into soyland, feel free to use ground turkey, chicken, or beef in place of the soy crumbles.  Also, if you keep a fully stocked spice cabinet like I do, consider making your own taco seasoning which allows you to control the salt and spiciness of this dish.

Vegetarian Tex-Mex Quinoa Bowl (makes 4 servings)

Adapted from Cooking Light Magazine‘s Tex-Mex Rice Bowl

  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 2 cups water or vegetable broth
  • non-stick spray
  • 1 12-ounce package soy crumbles (such as MorningStar Farms® Meal Starters® Grillers® Recipe Crumbles™)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons packaged taco seasoning (see note) 
  • 1 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 plum tomatoes, seeded
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, minced
  • 4 teaspoons chopped cilantro

Note: To make your own taco seasoning, mix together 1 tablespoon chili powder, 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/4 teaspoon onion powder, 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano, 1/2 teaspoon paprika, 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin, 1 teaspoon sea salt (optional), and 1 teaspoon black pepper.

In a medium sauce pan, add 2 cups water or broth and quinoa.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 20-22 minutes.  Spray non-stick spray into a large skillet and heat over medium-high heat.  Add soy crumbles and cook 3 minutes.  Stir in 1/4 cup water and taco seasoning and stir for 1 minute.  Stir in corn and black beans, cook for 1 minute or until heated.  Stir in quinoa, chopped tomato and jalapeño.  Top each serving with 1 teaspoon cilantro.

The ingredients:

In a medium sauce pan, add 2 cups water or broth and quinoa.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 20-22 minutes. 

Spray non-stick spray into a large skillet and heat over medium-high heat.  Add soy crumbles and cook 3 minutes.  

Stir in 1/4 cup water and taco seasoning and stir for 1 minute. 

Stir in corn and black beans, cook for 1 minute or until heated. 

Stir in quinoa, chopped tomato and jalapeño.  

Top each serving with 1 teaspoon cilantro.

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