Happy December! I cannot believe it is December. Time is flying! Slow down please!! I am currently being held hostage on my couch by two sleeping boxers. If you know anything about boxers, you know they are big time lap dogs. They don’t seem to know (or maybe they just don’t care) that they are 60+ pounds and crushing the air out of your chest. They are just snuggled up and snoring away in your face. I love this cuddly love bug behavior and soak up every moment of snuggles I get from my pups. Luckily I had my computer before they plopped down. Unluckily, my freshly poured glass of wine is out of arms reach on the end table. Oh well, it will have to wait while I hold my computer at an awkward angle to not disrupt the doggies and attempt to type.
In between the food fest of Thanksgiving and the soon to be cookie coma of Christmas, I am trying to load up on the healthy eats. So it is time to reboot and crank up the healthy eating which is where I got the idea for this bake. Quinoa, black beans, and winter squash all loaded into a delicious bake with cheese sprinkled on top. Healthy eating never sounded so good!
This is absolutely delicious and incredibly filling. It is also loaded with healthy ingredients: quinoa, black beans, winter squash, peppers, onions, and yes … a little cheese! (okay, that last one isn’t “healthy” per se but life is better with cheese on top!) Here is the recipe:
- 1 acorn squash or any winter squash (peeled, seeds scooped out, and cubed)
- 1 cup quinoa
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 red onion, diced
- 2 cups vegetable broth (divided into 1½ cups and ½ cup)
- 1 15 ounce can tomato sauce
- 2 teaspoons italian seasoning
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 15 ounce can black beans (drained and rinsed)
- 3 ounces cream cheese
- ½ to 1 cup mozzarella cheese (for sprinkling on top)
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Mix cubed squash with some olive oil and salt and pepper. Spread onto a cookie sheet and bake for 20 minutes (turning once or twice).
- Once the squash comes out of the oven, reduce the heat to 325 degrees
- Meanwhile, combine quinoa, red bell pepper, onion, 1½ cups of vegetable broth, half the can of tomato sauce, italian seasoning, chili powder, cumin, and garlic in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook 15 to 20 minutes (until liquid is absorbed)
- Add roasted squash, remaining ½ cup vegetable broth, remaining tomato sauce, black beans, and cream cheese. Cook over medium low heat until cream cheese is melted and mixed in.
- Pour into a 3 qt casserole dish (lightly spritzed with olive oil) and top with mozzarella cheese.
- Bake in the 325 degree oven for about 25 to 30 minutes (until cheese is bubbling and slightly browned)
I used an acorn squash I had laying around, but any winter squash will do. Once I baked it, I divided it into 8 tupperware containers. 8 meals for the week, check!