Well I can’t believe it’s happening again… it’s cold. I MEAN COLD! Mother Nature what are you doing?! So I’ve backed off from the barbecue this week and brought out the skillet to create warm and hearty meals that will fill my families tummies and keep them going. Hearty, and filling meals don’t always have to be rich in creams and high in calories. I still wanted to put something absolutely delicious on the table in under 30 minutes and that’s exactly what I did.
The beauty of this skillet is that your meat lover will definitely enjoy this – it’s ground beef. But you can smile knowing they are also enjoying the health benefits of quinoa.
“Quinoa is naturally gluten-free and contains iron, B-vitamins, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, vitamin E and fiber. It is one of only a few plant foods that are considered a complete protein and comprised of all pernine essential amino acids.”
– Medical News Today, February 2016.
I like to keep a balance in our home with good food, healthy choices, and some treats that we can all enjoy. Let’s be honest for a moment shall we? I like chips, and popcorn. If I could, I would eat them every single day (clearly I’m salty fan, not so much a sweet fan), but I don’t because that’s… well not a good choice. I try to avoid buying those things on a weekly basis and only buy them when I know we are going to have a huge barbecue with friends over, or if we’ve decided to have a special movie night as a family. A treat is a treat and I want to teach my kids that. I’m a huge believer in moderation, and everything is ok in moderation.
This meal on the other hand is not full of fat and grease. Using extra lean ground beef kept it a little lighter, and I swapped out the typical rice for quinoa to mix up our meals a bit. You could easily use rice instead if that’s what your family prefers. If that’s what you’re choosing, I would suggest a wild grain rice or brown rice. Also for SmartPoint purposes you will have to re-calculate since I based this on quinoa. Keeping the quinoa makes this dish entirely gluten-free, and total bonus for some who may be avoiding it for health reasons!
- 1 lb extra lean ground beef
- 2 bell peppers, one orange and one red, diced
- 1 cup corn (if frozen, thaw first)
- 1 onion, diced
- 398mL can Fire Roasted Tomatoes
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- ½ tsp chilli powder (you can use more for a stronger heat but I stuck with this to keep this fairly mild for the kids)
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 cup chopped cilantro + more for garnish
- 1 lime, quartered (optional)
- green onions, (optional)
- 2 cups cooked Quinoa
- Cook Quinoa according to package directions. Since it takes about 20 minutes, this is the time to start so it will be ready at the end to mix in.
- In a large skillet over medium heat add lean ground beef. Season with a little salt & pepper. Crumble with your spatula and stir around until almost all of the pink is gone. Add the peppers, onion and garlic.
- Continue stirring until everything has softened, about 5 minutes. Add the cumin, chilli powder and smoked paprika.
- Everything should be cooked in your skillet, add your 2 cups of quinoa and pour in the can of fire roasted diced tomatoes (juice and all).
- Bring the heat up to medium-high and let the juices soak into the quinoa (about 2 minutes). Remove from heat, stir in 1 cup of cilantro and serve hot.
- Top with additional cilantro, green onions and a squeeze of fresh lime juice!
How easy is that? And it’s so good! It makes perfect leftovers for lunches the next day! I added a little hot sauce to give mine a nice kick of heat but the girls ate it with just the lime juice and loved it!
East healthy doesn’t mean sacrificing the good things, or taking forever in the kitchen to make meals. A little planning, and some great family favourite recipes can really go a long way! What do you like to eat when it comes to making healthy choices? How about when you have kids to contend with as well?