Three delicious ways to dress up whole grains

Looking for a satisfying, plant-based side or entrée? Start with a hearty, whole-grain base. These three recipes feature quinoa, whole-wheat pasta, or bulgur.

Quinoa & Fruit Salad

Quinoa Winter Fruit Salad

Tri-color quinoa is a combination of white, red, and black quinoa. Use regular (white) quinoa if you can’t find it.

Time: 15 minutes

1 cup tri-color quinoa
2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
¼ tsp. kosher salt
¼ cup loosely packed mint leaves
¼ cup loosely packed parsley leaves
2 navel or Cara Cara oranges, peeled and chopped
1 cup pomegranate seeds

  1. Rinse the quinoa thoroughly in a fine mesh strainer with cold water.
  1. In a medium pot, bring 2 cups of water to a boil.
  1. Stir in the quinoa and reduce to a low simmer. Cover and cook until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is tender, 15-20 minutes.
  1. Rinse under cold water to cool, then drain well.
  1. In a large bowl, make the dressing by whisking together the lemon juice, oil, and salt.
  1. Chop the herbs and immediately stir them into the dressing.
  1. Toss the quinoa with the dressing.
  1. Add the oranges and pomegranate seeds and stir gently to combine.

Serves 6.

Per serving (1 cup):

  • Calories: 190
  • Total fat: 7 g
  • Saturated fat: 1 g
  • Sodium: 90 mg
  • Carbs: 30 g
  • Fiber: 5 g
  • Protein: 5 g

 

Sesame Noodles

Sesame Noodles

Tip: Slice the snow peas and whisk the sauce ingredients together while the pasta is cooking, and this delicious-every-time dish will be on the table in under 30 minutes. Want more protein? Toss in some tofu or edamame.

Time: 25 minutes

4 oz. whole wheat spaghetti
4 cups bean sprouts
2 cups thinly sliced snow peas
2 Tbs. toasted sesame oil
¼ cup unsalted peanut butter
2 Tbs. reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 Tbs. rice or cider vinegar
1 tsp. brown sugar
1 scallion, minced
1 Tbs. finely minced ginger
1 clove garlic, finely minced
2 tsp. Asian chili sauce
1 cup grated carrot

  1. Cook the spaghetti according to the package instructions.
  1. Just before the pasta is done, add the bean sprouts and snow peas to the pot. Cook for 30 seconds, then drain everything well.
  1. Return the pasta, sprouts, and snow peas to the pot and toss with the sesame oil.
  1. In a large bowl, whisk the peanut butter, soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, scallion, ginger, garlic, and chili sauce with 2 Tbs. of water.
  1. Toss the peanut butter mixture with the spaghetti, sprouts, snow peas, and carrot.

Serves 4.

Per serving (1½ cups):

  • Calories: 320
  • Total fat: 16 g
  • Saturated fat: 2.5 g
  • Carbs: 38 g
  • Fiber: 8 g
  • Protein: 13 g
  • Sodium: 370 mg

 

Fruit & Bulgur Salad

Fruit & Bulgur Salad

You can use just about any fruit (try apple, pineapple, or grapes), and replace some or all of the arugula with just about any soft herbs (try basil, parsley, or cilantro) or chopped salad greens.

Time: 15 minutes

½ cup bulgur
1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
¼ tsp. kosher salt
1 nectarine or plum, pitted and chopped
3 cups lightly packed baby arugula or spinach, chopped
¼ cup toasted almonds or sunflower seeds

  1. Soak the bulgur in ¾ cup of hot water until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain any water that hasn’t been absorbed.
  1. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, oil, and salt.
  1. Toss with the bulgur, nectarine, arugula, and almonds.

Serves 4.

Per serving (1 cup):

  • Calories: 150
  • Total fat: 7 g
  • Sat fat: 1 g
  • Carbs: 19 g
  • Fiber: 4 g
  • Protein: 4 g
  • Sodium: 130 mg

 

Enjoy these recipes? Nutrition Action’s Veggie Nice gives you more than a month’s worth of meatless main dishes. Try the Yellow Split Pea & Spinach Stew. Or the Pepper, Onion, & Sweet Potato Frittata. All are from the kitchen of Kate Sherwood, our Healthy Cook. That means they’re good for you… and their flavor will knock your socks off.

 

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