This vegan Red Quinoa, Kale and Roasted Squash recipe is chock full of flavor and nutrients. It’s a complete meal in a bowl that’s comforting and delicious. It’s a satisfying and easy dinner to have at the end of a long hard day and cold, blustery night.
Nutritional Content Winter Squash
Orange winter squash varietals are a great source of magnesium, potassium, vitamins C and A, and a good source of calcium. Below is a list of the more common winter squashes available at most local farmer markets and super markets. More good news is that they store well in your vegetable bin for up to 3-4 weeks, so you can stock up on them when they are on sale.
Winter Squash Varieties
Acorn Squash: Green on the outside and a lighter orange on the inside, they are shaped like an acorn, hence the name. The taste is mildly sweet and a little starchy.
Butternut Squash: Sand colored on the outside and a deep orange on the inside, and shaped like an oval that is larger on one end. They are mildly sweet and delicate. This squash is ideal for pureed soups.
Delicata Squash: Oval and yellow with green stripes on the outside and a pale orange color on the inside, Delicata squash are perfect for baking. The taste is moist, sweet and mild.
Hubbard Squash: This Native American squash first introduced in colonial times in New England is teardrop in shape, a blue-gray color on the outside and deep orange on the inside. Its flavor is similar to that of cooking pumpkins—fleshy, rich and mildly sweet. It is ideal baked, steamed or added to soups or stews.
Kabocha Squash: Originally from Japan, it is green on the outside and a deep rich orange on the inside. A single cup of kabocha has forty calories compared to butternut squash’s 60, and has less than half of the carbs of butternut squash (7 grams vs. 16 grams). Its taste is buttery and mildly sweet.
Nutritional Content Black or Tuscan Kale
Tuscan kale, also known as cavalo nero or black kale, is a popular winter-season green originating from the Northern parts of Italy. It has long, curly, blue-green leaves with an embossed surface that resembles dinosaur skin, thus giving its name as dinosaur kale. Kale, like other members of the Brassica family such as cabbage and brocalli, contains health-promoting phytochemicals that protect against prostate and colon cancers. It is also known to help lower cholesterol due to its fiber related components. These components bind together with bile acids in your digestive tract making them easy to excrete, thus lowering cholesterol levels. Kale is rich in vitamin A, K and C. One serving provides 512% of RDA of A, 700% of K (crucial for healthy bone formation), 200% of C (key to fight infection and bind free oxygen radicals) and B-Complex (essential for substrate metabolism in the body). Kale is a great source for trace minerals including copper and manganese to name a few.
Winter Harvest Red Quinoa, Kale & Roasted Squash Bowl
1 pound red quinoa, cooked
½ small red onion, finely chopped
1 medium red or yellow bell pepper, medium dice
1 large bunch Tuscan kale, washed and chopped in 1” ribbons
1 small Kobucha squash, peeled and diced in ½”
1 tsp. dried thyme
Best quality extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
½ cup good quality extra virgin olive oil
3 T. apple cider vinegar
1 tsp. dried thyme 1 tsp.
sel de mer ½ tsp.
fresh ground black pepper
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Meanwhile, peel and dice squash. Place in two, 13 by 9 inch pans. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil to thoroughly coat, but not drown the squash. Sprinkle sea salt, cracked pepper and thyme, and then toss well with clean hands. NOTE: Rubbing the dried thyme with your hands will help release the oils and flavor. Bake in a 425 degree oven for 10 minutes. Then, turn the diced squash and bake for another 8-10 minutes until all sides have developed a light brown crust.
2. Steam one pound of red quinoa according to the directions on the outside of the box. *Make sure the water is completely evaporated before you remove it from the stove.
3. Wash and thoroughly clean the kale and then pat the leaves dry with a clean kitchen towel. Gently remove the stems by grabbing the stem at the bottom with your right hand and sliding the leaves off the stem with your left hand. Gather and chop the leaves in 1” ribbons, chop again perpendicularly by thirds so the chopped leaves are uniform in size. Place in a large Tupperware or similar bowl
4. Chop and dice ½ red onion and bell pepper. Place on top of the kale.
5. Place cooked red quinoa on top of the veggies and allow to rest for 5 minutes so that it partially wilts the kale.
6. Place all dressing ingredients in a small bowl. Wisk briskly until well emulsified and creamy. Pour dressing over mixture. Gently fold all ingredients with a large mixing spoon until well coated.
Serving Size: 1 cup. Yields: 12+ servings