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Quinoa Lentil Bowls

I'm really cold all the time and it's only getting worse with the summer weather going I've been making one of my cold weather favorites for easy lunches at work.    I love that quinoa lentil bowls are packed with plant based protein and vegetables in addition to being super filling.   This recipe is also super easy, only uses one pot and is quick considering it begins with dried lentils and quinoa.   

Easy Quinoa Lentil Bowl

Hands on time: 15 min

Total time: 45 min

Makes: 4 servings

Adapted from: Simply Quinoa

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium onion, diced

1 cup carrots, chopped

2 cups chopped mushrooms ( I leave these out)

2 - 3 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

2 bay leaves

1 cup lentils (dry/uncooked)

2 cups vegetable broth ( I use Better than Boullion)

2 1/2 cups water, divided

1 teaspoon miso paste, optional (I do not use unless I happen to have on hand)

1/2 cup red quinoa or variety of choice, uncooked

4 cups fresh spinach

Salt & pepper to taste

Grated cashews or parmesan cheese to garnish

Heat the oil over medium heat in a large pot. Add onions and carrots and cook until the carrots have started to soften, about 3 - 4 minutes. Add mushrooms and continue to cook until mushrooms are juicy and tender, another 5 minutes.

Add garlic, red pepper flakes and herbs. Stir around until the whole mixture becomes fragrant, about 1 minute.

Pour in lentils, broth, 2 cups of water and miso (if using). Bring the mixture to a boil, cover and reduce to simmer for 15 minutes.

Remove lid and add quinoa and remaining water. Stir to combine. Bring the mixture back to a boil, recover and reduce to simmer for another 15 minutes.

Remove pot from the heat, uncover and add spinach, stirring gently to combine. Taste and season with salt and pepper (usually just needs pepper).

Serve with grated cashews or parmesan cheese.

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