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Being that I'm just about at the end of my maternity leave, I figure it's time to start doing things to get me pre-pregnancy (read: pre-Alice) body back. Now I'm not naive enough to believe that I'll ever look the way I did before I carried one of my sweet girls. I also know that it's not exactly a good or healthy idea to go on a full-blown diet while I'm nursing. So in terms of my eating habits, I've decided to just focus on making better eating decisions. Enter: Shrimp and Quinoa Bowls.
Now I'll be honest with you, I'm generally not a huge fan of quinoa. I'll eat it, it's just not at the top of my healthy-grains list. But I want to like it. So I'm trying to prepare it more often and in a variety of different ways. So I decided to add a bunch of my favorite things to the quinoa to make it more enjoyable for lunch one day.
The flavors in this dish are a huge win! You've got the citrus-y brightness from the lemon juice, the kick from the crushed red pepper (though it's not overwhelmingly hot) and the savory flavor from the shallots and garlic. The leafy greens, mushrooms and tomatoes add some delicious texture. This dish really has all the components to not only make it satisfying but also really healthy.
The great thing is, you can sub out any of the ingredients to make it whatever you want it to be. I bet this would be awesome with farro or brown rice. Or if Kale is what's available, that would be great. Or even Spinach. I love it with the shrimp, but chicken is a great lean protein option as well. Either way, get to the kitchen and make this- it's a gorgeous lunch or dinner! And using a garlic press to press the garlic into the pan at the beginning instead of spending the time mincing it is such a time saver!!
Some other healthy recipes that I love include:
Shrimp and Quinoa Bowls
- 5 Tbsp. of olive oil divided
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 2 small shallots diced
- 5 good-size mushrooms sliced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 big bunch of Swiss chard cleaned, trimmed and cut into bite-size pieces
- ½ tsp. of crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 pkg of grape tomatoes halved or quartered depending on the size
- 1 lb. of shrimp
- Garlic powder to taste
- 1 package of plain cooked quinoa I cook it in vegetable broth for added flavor
- Heat 3 Tbsp. of oil over medium heat in a saute pan.
- Add shallots, mushrooms and press the garlic into the pan. Season with salt and pepper and saute for 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Add the Swiss chard to the pan and season with a little more salt, pepper and the crushed red pepper flakes.
- Saute for 2 more minutes to cook the greens down a bit and reduce the heat to medium low. Add you tomatoes and cook for 10 minutes, stirring once in a while.
- While the greens are cooking, add 1 Tbsp. of oil in a separate pan over medium heat.
- Toss your shrimp in a bowl with salt, pepper, garlic powder and the remaining 1 Tbsp. of oil.
- Add the shrimp to the pan and add the lemon juice onto the shrimp.
- Cook the shrimp for around 1 minute on each side and then add the shrimp and all of the juices to the greens.
- Cover and cook for a few more minutes until the shrimp is fully cooked and pink (but not over cooked).
- Serve over hot quinoa and enjoy!
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