As I sat down to write this, I initially thought, “oh man. It’s Monday. Mondays are hard. And Mondays that kickoff a new school year are exceptionally hard.” And then I realized, I could probably say that about every day of the week. And every season of the year. Because getting kids (or adults for that matter) where they need to be, on time, juggling nine-hundred-thousand activities and appointments and commitments, on top of just tackling day-to-day responsibilities, is hard. I realized I can barely carve out 10 minutes to call my dentist and schedule our appointments, let alone follow-up with my insurance company on how my car is doing, or line up a pest control service to handle the army of sugar ants that are colonizing my back porch as we speak.
So finding the time I need to make dinner for all the people in this house before daddy gets home is nearly impossible. I need meals where cook time is FAST. Enter my southwestern veggie-stuffed acorn squash. Totally delicious, meat-free (seriously, that’s the biggest time-saver ever), and packed with nutrients to boot. And in true MM fashion, I adapted the recipe while I was cooking, because I realized we’d probably be fine without the quinoa. In hindsight, I probably should have just bitten the bullet and cooked the quinoa while all the other stuff was going, but I forgot about it at first and then decided not to take the time to put that together. Cora and I were fine without it, but the hubs was still hungry after his portion and wound up raiding my taquito stash. I’ll be sure to keep the quinoa next time around. So here goes:
I adapted a recipe from Pinch of Yum, which is an awesome food blog I follow.
- 2 acorn squash, halved with seeds and pulp removed
- 1 cup organic quinoa, rinsed
- 1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 2 cloves fresh garlic
- 1/2 tsp. cumin
- 1 small yellow onion (you can use red if you want to spice it up)
- 1/2 cup chopped peppers- your favorite kind (I used sweet peppers from my farm share)
- 1 ear fresh corn, off the cob (or 1/2 cup frozen)
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 tomato, diced
- salsa, sour cream, guacamole and cheddar cheese to taste
- Place your acorn squash face down on a baking sheet. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes.
- Cook quinoa according to instructions on package (usually it’s a 1:1.5 quinoa to water ratio, but that may differ based on your brand)
- While quinoa is cooking, in a large skillet, cook garlic and cumin in EVOO over medium just until garlic is soft and transparent, about 1-2 minutes.
- Add in onion, peppers and corn, cooking till lightly browned, 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Add black beans and cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until beans begin to split. Turn off heat.
- Combine quinoa and beans/peppers/corn mixture. Add salsa to taste if you like.
- Pour mixture into acorn squash wells, top with tomatoes, more cheese, and sour cream or guacamole. Enjoy!
This was super delicious for us! Very easy, and a great, gluten-free meatless meal. We love southwestern food in this house, (especially the kids), so any time I put black beans and peppers with sour cream I know I have a hit. You can also try this with sweet potatoes or butternut squash as your base vs. acorn squash, and you can sub out any of the veggies for those that your fam will go for. This is just what works for our crew. And you can replace the quinoa with couscous, rice, or leave grains out entirely and be just fine- just know it may not be super filling. You can also add in chicken or steak if that’s your thing. The possibilities are endless!
And now to show that I’m not just a crafty mom blogging about conflict-free green beans, a little insight into what you’ll see from me this week:
- how I make time for myself when I’m up to my eyeballs in diapers, homeschool, and kids’ therapies
- a look at homemade baby food and how INCREDIBLY simple it is
- a Soba noodle bowl that will make you never want takeout again
- my crockpot brunswick stew- which is a poor man’s organic paradise
- how I keep our family of six operating on a budget and completely DEBT FREE
I can’t wait to talk with you more- have a great week friends!