The other day, I was desperate for a quick dinner that everyone would eat. My good ol' standby for those types of evenings is either frittatas, lentils and rice, or taco soup.
I really needed to grocery shop at the time, and we were out of eggs and lentils. So taco soup it was.
One problem: we were out of ground beef too. We've been eating less meat lately and focusing on really good quality meat (free range, organic, lean, ground after you've requested - that way it's all from one cow, and it's the cut of meat you'd like to eat). Wes had made a bunch of quinoa that morning (we LOVE quinoa - if it's cooked right) and I thought, "what the heck?" and threw it in instead. (I didn't measure, but it was probably in the neighborhood of 2-3 cups.)
Oh. My. Goodness.
It was delicious!
This is now our new favorite way to eat good ol' taco soup.
Added bonus: so much healthier for you!
Quinoa is a low-glycemic food (18 on the scale of 0-250, has 5 grams of fiber and 8 grams of protein per serving, and is chock full of healthy nutrients such as amino acids, magnesium, calcium, and iron. And if you sprout it - which is pretty darn effortless - you'll only increase the nutritional value by making it a live plant food.
If you don't know about the nutritional benefits of quinoa, you can check them out here.
So, if you're in the mood to try something new, this one was really yummy. My kids loved it. We loved it. Taco soup is just yummy!
*something else that we do to "healthify" this recipe is use Wildtree's taco seasoning. It is MSG-free, color and preservative free. It tastes exactly the same as McCormick's too. We love Wildtree products!
If you haven't cooked quinoa before, it's really easy. You must rinse it first, because it has its own natural pesticide on it that can be slightly toxic (give you a tummyache) if you don't rinse the grains. All you do is use a 1:1 3/4 ratio of quinoa:liquid (we use water), bring it to a boil, then cover it, turn the burner off, and let it sit for 15 minutes. Easy peasy.
So, if you're feeling adventurous, give this variation a try. It's fast, easy, and delicious!