I apologize if you've heard this from me before, but I must once again urge you to cook up a huge batch of quinoa and keep it in your fridge (or freezer!) for recipes all week.
It's such a healthful and versatile ingredient that I find myself making it more and more. It's packed with protein, full of fiber and vitamins, and as a bonus, it's gluten free. It also happens to pair splendidly with many other ingredients.
Your handy stock of quinoa can be used to boost nutrients in salads; be added to smoothies; get topped with grilled veggies, tofu, fish or meat; be spooned into soups instead of noodles or rice; or get topped with sauces (think tomato or cheese sauces). Or you can just toss it with a little olive oil, coconut oil or ghee and serve it as a starchy side.
With school back in session, I'm making a lot of quick breakfasts that will fill up my kids' tummies for the whole morning. Enter the quinoa breakfast bowl, which can be customized according to your family's preferences.
The basics: Mix together cooked quinoa with some milk and some flavoring (vanilla, orange zest, coconut or whatever) and heat it in the microwave until warm. Top with fruit, nuts and maybe some yogurt, dried fruit or a drizzle of maple syrup. Done. Warm, filling, healthy breakfast bowls that everyone will love.
Today, I'm sharing a personal favorite: the Quinoa-Pumpkin Breakfast Bowl. The spices and aroma make me feel positively autumnal, even if my San Diego weather disagrees.
Food Network star Melissa d'Arabian is an expert on healthy eating on a budget. She is the author of the cookbook "Supermarket Healthy."