Turkey and Quinoa Cabbage Rolls – Paleo and Gluten Free
I don’t know what got me all jacked up to make cabbage rolls. I’ve never made cabbage rolls before but there was just something about it that I needed to eat.
I went looking for a great cabbage roll recipe and stumbled on a few really good ones but this one from www.12tomatoes.com caught my attention. I could easily make it paleo and gluten free so I was down-like-a-clown-wearing-a-crown 🙂
I didn’t know what I was getting myself into because I’d never made cabbage rolls before but this recipe is basically very easy if you break it into 4 small stages.
Step 1 – At the same time you are boiling the cabbage leaves you can be cooking the quinoa. Put the head of cabbage in large pot of boiling water but cut the core off first. I found it helpful to cut slices across the bottom of the leaves so that when they were ready to be peeled off I wouldn’t have to tug them off the bottom. Boil for about 8 – 10 minutes but if you see leaves starting to peel away, go ahead and remove them carefully and set aside until you have about 10 – 12 good rollable leaves.
While the cabbage water is heating up put a cup of quinoa and 2 cups of vegetable broth (organic of course) in a medium pan and bring it to a boil. If you have a favorite way to make quinoa, got for it but this is how I make mine and it comes out perfect every single time. I use the already rinsed kind so I don’t have to do that step.
Once the quinoa is boiling, reduce heat to a simmer and cover. Set timer for 20 minutes. Stirring the quinoa about every 4 – 5 minutes until you see the curly ends sprout from the quinoa. Once done, remove from heat and let cool before adding it to the egg/turkey mixture.
Step 2 -While cabbage is boiling and quinoa is simmering you can start the next stage.
In a large bowl combine the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, coconut palm sugar (or brown sugar), lemon juice and coconut aminos (can sub with soy sauce or Worcestershire). Set aside.
Step 3 – In another large bowl combine ground turkey, egg, onion, coconut milk (can sub with regular organic milk), salt, pepper and garlic powder. Add the quinoa once it has cooled off. The reason for this is that the hot quinoa can prematurely start cooking the egg.
Step 4 – Grease a 9 x 13 baking pan. I sprayed it mine with coconut oil. Put about a little over a 1/4 cup of turkey/quinoa mixture in each leaf, fold in edges and tuck everything in.
Put cabbage rolls in pan folded edges down. Once you’ve got all your rolls rolled, pour the tomato mixture over the top.
Put in the oven for an hour at 350 and BAM, you friggin’ made CABBAGE ROLLS – what what!!
Turkey and Quinoa Cabbage Rolls - Paleo and Gluten Free
2 - 14.5 ounce cans organic fire roasted diced tomatoes
1 - 8 ounce can organic tomato sauce
2 Tbs coconut palm sugar (can sub with 1 Tbs brown sugar)
1½ Tbs lemon juice
1 Tbs coconut aminos (can sub with soy sauce or Worcestershire sauce)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Put the head of cabbage in large pot of boiling water but cut the core off first. I found it helpful to cut slices across the bottom of the leaves so that when they were ready to be peeled off I wouldn't have to tug them off the bottom. Boil for about 8 - 10 minutes but if you see leaves starting to peel away, go ahead and remove them carefully and set aside until you have about 10 - 12 good rollable leaves.
While the cabbage is boiling, prepare the quinoa. Put 1 cup quinoa and 2 cups vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer, cover and let cook for 20 minutes. Stir every 4 or 5 minutes. Quinoa will be done when most of the liquid has boiled away and the little curly q's have sprouted from the quinoa. Set aside and let cool.
In a medium bowl combine tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, coconut palm sugar, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce. Set aside.
In another medium bowl combine beat egg, coconut milk, turkey, onion, garlic powder, salt, pepper and cooled off quinoa.
Put a little over a ¼ cup of turkey mixture into each leaf. Wrap, tuck in the ends and place in baking sheet folded side down.
Again, I’m thinking about my poor freezing cold family and friends back home in Illinois. But anytime is a good time for chili but none more fitting than when it’s cold outside so I made this super nutritious, low fat chili, PALEO, gluten free and vegan optional chili.
The sweet potato and carrot give this chili a subtle sweetness and combined with the spiciness of the cayenne pepper and other seasoning, makes the tastiest combination. This is not your Dads chili.
This chili is super easy, the only things you precook is the turkey and onion and you can cook them in the same pan. Then you dump everything else in your cooker, add the cooked turkey and onion and set the timer. Done and Yum!
You can easily make this vegan buy replacing the turkey with a cup of quinoa and 2 cups of water or by adding more sweet potato and carrot and an extra can of beans.
Baked Chicken in Artichoke Hearts and Spinach – Paleo and Gluten Free
I don’t think I’ve ever liked artichoke hearts as much as I do in the recipe. It took me a really long time to appreciate them just like asparagus. But now like asparagus, I can say I love artichoke hearts.
Artichoke hearts have antioxidants, 9 times more Vitamin C than orange juice or red peppers and 10 grams of soluble fiber per artichoke. Not a bad resume.
Browning the chicken in a pan on the stove prior to baking is totally worth it and I think really makes the recipe go from good to kick ass. I used chicken (bone-in) cut into 8 pieces from Trader Joes. Using a very sharp knife, I removed the skins to make it lower in fat. Use 6 – 8 pieces for a family meal but if its just you and your sweety, 4 pieces will be fine. Just halve the rest of the ingredients.
I also made this same dish with boneless, skinless chicken breast and it came out fantastic too. You’ll prepare everything the same but reduce the baking time by about 5 minutes.
While the chicken is browning on the stove (about 7 – 10 minutes on each side), cut up the onions and carrots. Then once the chicken is browned, remove it to a plate and using the same juices in the pan, saute the onions, carrots, artichokes and garlic. After about 5 minutes, the veggies should be softened up. Now add a bag of fresh baby spinach and once it gets good and wilted, pour everything from your pan into your baking dish and pour the broth over the veggies. Now nestle your chicken pieces in the veggies and broth and bake for 20 – 25 minutes (for bone-in) or 15 – 20 minutes (for boneless). Check to see if its done by slicing into the thickest piece and if there’s no pink, you are good to go.
Baked Chicken in Artichoke Hearts and Spinach - Paleo and Gluten Free
6 - 8 bone-in chicken pieces (thighs, chicken breast, legs) OR 2 - 4 pieces of boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 cans (14-ounces) quartered artichokes, rinsed and drained
1 yellow onion, diced fine
1 red onion, diced fine
1 large carrot, peeled and sliced into thin rounds
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped OR 2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 bag (6 to 8 ounces) fresh baby spinach
1 cup vegetable broth
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 425.
Heat oil and butter in a large pan.
Brown chicken for about 7 - 10 minutes each side until nicely browned.
Remove chicken from pan and set aside on a plate.
Using the same juices saute the onions, carrots, artichokes and garlic for about 5 minutes or until veggies have softened up.
Add bag of fresh baby spinach to the pan and once it gets good and wilty.
Put the veggies in large baking dish and pour the broth over the top.
Nestle your chicken pieces in the veggies and broth and bake for 20 - 25 minutes for bone-in OR 15 - minutes for boneless. Just cut the pieces open to make sure there is no pink before serving. If you need to cook longer than do 5 minute increments at a time so not to overcook.
So I hear that it’s gloomy and cold in my hometown in the suburbs of Chicago but it sure doesn’t seem like it here in sunny Arizona where it was 81 degrees 2 days ago. On November 9th, it’s sunny and 81!! Unheard of. At least for me because I’ve lived in Illinois the majority of my adulthood.
But my internal clock tells me it’s yummy cozy slow cooker soup season for sure. I found this recipe and my mouth started watering. I loved the simple ingredients and the fact that it included couscous which makes me feel like I’m being bad and eating pasta but couscous actually has protein and fiber in it. So I’m not being super bad by eating pasta but also not being super awesome by eating quinoa, couscous is somewhere in the middle for me.
This recipe came together so fast and easy and unlike other crock pot recipes that take 4 – 6 hours, this one only takes about 2 hours on low. A nice, easy, healthy, warm and cozy vegetarian soup just like that. And it freezes really good too.
If you really like carrots, add more carrots, if you like more green red orange or yellow bell peppers then add more. The recipe is so simple that you can easily customize it to your particular taste.
You can decide how much seasoning you prefer too. I like a little kick to my recipes so I added a 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne and it was perfect for me. But at the very least, the salt, pepper and oregano give a great flavor and mix really good with the flavor of the fire roasted tomatoes.
I love having a good soup in the fridge ready to heat up. This recipe makes A LOT. I had to use my 6 quart slow cooker. But it’s so good and hearty, not to mention nutritious that the hubby and I go through it really fast. None goes to waste, that’s for sure.
I recently discovered the joys of Costco. I know, I know, I’m a little late jumping on the Costco train but I finally made it. My only regret is that I didn’t know about the fantastic products they have sooner. From what I understand, Costco has really stepped up the “healthy food option” selections recently so it was just meant to be that I found them when I did.
My review is about THE best veggie I’ve ever had in my entire life and I have eaten my share of veggie burgers. If you’ve tried other veggie burgers in the past and were like “meh”, try these and you will say “YEAH!” They are so tast-teeeeeeee!
Don Lee Farms makes this particular veggie patty. Here is a list of the reasons I love them so much:
They are organic!
Ready to eat in 1 minute in the microwave
I can pronounce every single ingredient
Only 160 calories
Zero trans fat
4 grams of protein
2 grams of fiber
No weird “fake meat” ingredients
Not to mention that they are so delicious. I believe it’s because of the unique combination of ingredients (sweet potatoes, onions, celery, spinach, brown rice, sunflower seeds, etc.)
These babies taste so good that most of the time I eat them with no bun, just a little organic ketchup or I top them with some sauteed mushrooms or spinach, some canned fired roasted tomatoes, crumble in a salad or on top of the most delicious steam bag quinoa/kale I’ve ever had. They are so versatile.
My beloved ketchup has a companion once again 🙂
Next time you are at Costco, do yourself a favor and give these a try, you will NOT be disappointed.