Mediterranean Quinoa Bowls
with roasted bell peppers / kale / mozzarella
These healthy quinoa bowls are packed with nutritious ingredients that give the meal flavor, texture and lots of bright color.
Smarts: All of these ingredients hold up well to refrigeration, so the bowls are great for make-ahead lunches. Just keep the vinaigrette separate and add it before serving.
- Quinoa, uncooked - 1 cup
- Stock, any type - 2 cups
- Artichoke hearts, canned - 6 oz, chopped
- Kalamata olives - 1/4 cup, chopped
- Kale - 4 leaves, thinly sliced
- Cheese, mozzarella, shredded - 5 oz, cubed, if not pre-shredded
- Bell peppers, red - 2
- Oil, olive - 1 Tbsp
- Walnut halves - 2 oz
- Garlic - 1 clove, chopped
- Mustard, Dijon - 3 tsp
- Honey - 2 tsp
- Lemon juice - 2 tsp
- Vinegar, apple cider - 1 Tbsp
- Oil, cooking - 3 Tbsp
- Yogurt, plain or Greek - 1 Tbsp
- Quinoa - Double if making Thursday’s meal. Combine quinoa with stock and a pinch of salt in a saucepan. Bring to a boil covered. Lower heat, keep covered, and cook until liquid is absorbed, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat when finished to prevent burning / sticking. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Make creamy lemon garlic vinaigrette - Chop garlic. Combine garlic, mustard, honey, lemon juice, vinegar, oil and yogurt. Use an immersion blender to blend until smooth. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Artichoke hearts / Olives - Rinse and drain artichoke hearts and olives. Roughly chop and combine. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
- Kale / Cheese - Prep as directed. Store separately. (Can be done up to 3 days ahead)
- Turn on the oven’s broiler. Core stem out of red peppers and place on a sheet pan. Slide the sheet pan under the broiler and cook peppers, rotating with tongs, until charred on both sides. Transfer peppers to a mixing bowl and cover with a plate for ~5 minutes to steam off skins. (Watch this videofor tips on how to roast peppers.)
- While peppers steam, toss kale with olive oil and some salt. Use your hands to rub the olive oil and salt into the kale until kale is tender and shiny ("massage" the kale).
- When bell peppers are cool enough to handle, peel off skins and chop. Combine with artichoke hearts and olives.
- Assemble quinoa bowls by dividing quinoa (remember to save half if doubled) and kale between serving bowls. Top with bell pepper / artichoke / olive mixture, cheese and walnuts. Drizzle vinaigrette over top and enjoy!
I thought it was fine, but nothing special - husband liked it quite a lot. Peeling the peppers was a pain though, and I don’t think cooking them really added anything that buying them fire-roasted wouldn’t. So would sub those in for easier prep.0 Helpful
An absolute favorite for me!0 Helpful
My husband declared this his favorite Cook Smarts meal yet. I cheated and used roasted bell peppers from a jar and added cherry tomatoes.0 Helpful
I added some grilled chicken to these since my husband doesn't think it's a meal without meat...lol...but I had it as is and it was SO good. My husband like it and he normally doesn't like quinoa. Even my daughter ate it up.0 Helpful
This is on my short list for go to lunches. I use feta instead of mozzarella and used jarred roasted red peppers for a faster prep. I also make dressing in bulk and freeze flat in quart bags in 5 serving increments. Quantities for 32 servings of dressing: Garlic - 8 cloves, chopped Mustard, Dijon - 1/2 c Honey - 1/3 c Lemon juice - 1/3 c Vinegar, apple cider - 1/2 c Yogurt, plain or Greek - 1/2 c Oil, cooking - 1.5 c0 Helpful
Loved this recipe. Have to be mindful of how much dressing I use, but the dressing was very good too.0 Helpful