Quinoa Mango Black Bean Burrito

quinoa burritos 004

(Becky, the Mama.)

Okay.  I have an honest confession.  If there were a support group for it, I should have joined.  Here it is:  I’m afraid of quinoa.  Not of eating it, mind you.  I actually love it and I know it is a vegetarian’s friends, full of all good things.  One cup of the nutty, fluffy tasty grain provides over 8 grams of protein, 5 grams of fiber, along with goodies like magnesium, zinc, iron, potassium and all for around 220 calories

My first encounter with quinoa was all positive: my daughter-in-law Julie took me to an adorable coffee shop called The Red Cup in Mukilteo, Washington, overlooking the water.  The kind of cafe with bright funky colors alongside soothing bohemian baristas in Birkenstocks and granny skirts.

red cup 1

They serve an organic warm, tasty burrito stuffed with quinoa and cheese that comes with tangy fresh mango salsa.   I’ve often thought how much I’d like to try recreating one of those burritos, but I found my mind braking at this thought: “Oh, no, I’ll have to learn how to make quinoa.”

Finally, I told my daughter-the-vegan that I have a quinoa-making phobia.  Her response? “Mom, you are going to laugh at yourself when you find out how ridiculously easy it is.  Just use your $10.00 cheap-o rice maker and pretend it is rice.”

So today I faced down my fears. I marched to my rice maker, poured a cup of quinoa and 1 ¼ cups of water into the bowl, turned it on, then walked away slowly.  When I returned, hesitantly, 15 minutes later… a miracle had occurred.  The tiny little beads had burst and turned nutty and fluffy and … awesome.

The rest was easy and familiar: I grilled a tortilla, sprinkled a little cheese around, then layered quinoa, black beans, salsa, mango,cilantro and chopped green onions.  Rolled that baby up, cut it in half at a diagonal. and dipped it in a bit more salsa mixed with diced mango.

I was immediately transported to that café in Seattle.

Just give me some Birkenstocks and a granny skirt and call me the “Quinoa Queen.”

quinoa burritos 006

Quinoa Mango Black Bean Burrito

Serves 1

1 medium to large Tortilla (white or wheat, I prefer Tortilla Land brand)

1/4 -1/3 cup grated cheese, depending on preference
1/3 cup cooked quinoa, warmed (click for Rachel’s simple directions)
2 T. black beans, warmed
1/4 c. diced mango, divided
Sprig cilantro, rough chopped (optional)
1 green onion chopped 
1/4 cup salsa

Grill tortilla on both sides until brown in spots, hot and pliable. (Use a bit of olive oil if needed to keep from sticking.)
Layer cheese, quinoa, black beans, 2 T. magno, cilantro and onion.

quinoa burritos 002

Tuck in two sides and then roll up into a burrito. Cut on the diagonal, in half. Mix salsa with remaining mango and serve alongside the burrito.

quinoa burritos 005

quinoa burritos 006

This was printed from: We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook
The site URL: http://welaughwecrywecook.com
The Title:Quinoa Mango Black Bean Burrito
The URL:http://wp.me/p1UwM9-Wb
This was printed from: We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook


Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa

Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa

Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa brings a nice touch of color, a punch of flavor, and a boost of nutrition to any meal.

This week I made a plan, a very purposeful plan. I decided that if I really wanted to make room in my life for God, fitness, writing, cooking, my husband, and my son, then I needed to live every day intentionally. Sunday morning I made charts and printed off calendars and posted them on the refrigerator door. I was even planning on attempting to skip my beloved morning coffee. I’d just take Jackson for a brisk walk instead.

As life goes, after church Sunday evening Jackson started running his first ever fever and was up most of the night. Then Monday morning at 7:50 am, my door bell rang. I hurried out of my pjs and into a t-shirt and sweats and threw my wild morning curls into a bun. I carried Jackson, still in his pjs, with me to the door, and we were greeted by a girl in her young 20s who looked like her morning routine had closely resembled mine, except she’d thrown on some scrubs instead of sweats.

“I’m here to give you your physical for the life insurance policy,” she said.

My husband had attempted to postpone this appointment, since he realized last minute he couldn’t be there. Apparently they didn’t get the memo. So there I was left alone to answer 4,000 questions about what disease I may or may not have contracted, pee in a cup (I wonder how many times can I talk about peeing on our food blog!), and have my blood drawn as I tried to keep Jackson entertained and contained.

The visit couldn’t have been less pleasant or less awkward. Taking my blood took two tries, leaving one arm bruised and still sore three days later. Apparently, you don’t need any social skills, hygiene, or experience with needles to be an in-home nurse for this company.

My actual plan for the day had included creating a menu for the week and going grocery shopping. With a feverish baby and one immobile arm, I decided productivity was going to have to wait. Which meant whipping up something for dinner out of a few staples in the kitchen. I usually have a block of tofu (I’m not crazy for tofu, so it’s always waiting for me as I get down to the last of my groceries), some sort of veggies left in the crisper, a jar of roasted red peppers, and a box of pre-rinsed quinoa (pronounced keen-wah).

So I made Everything Tofu (tofu coated in sesame seeds, poppy seeds, onion flakes, and garlic powder) topped with a chive Tofutti cream cheese sauce, a simple side of steamed broccoli, and my latest go-to side dish, roasted red pepper quinoa. It’s so easy and with my rice maker it basically cooks itself while I get the rest of dinner made.

The tofu was actually pretty good, but a lot of work. I would have been just as happy with a whole plate of this quinoa and a little broccoli. I immediately regretted not making more (so I’ve doubled the recipe for you guys!)

Tuesday, after another rough night with Jackson, I woke to a clogged milk duct along with a side of fever. Thankfully, we were back to our healthy selves by Wednesday. There is nothing like feeling sick and sleep deprived to make me thankful for a decent night’s rest and my good health. Maybe I’ll even get back to my plan tomorrow, but I may have lost my willpower to forgo coffee. Have any of you successfully quit coffee? Was it really hard?  Did you feel better without it?

Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa

Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa

Serves 4


1 cup onion, diced

4 cloves of garlic, minced

2 T. olive oil

2 cups quinoa (rinsed if the package doesn’t say it’s already pre-rinsed)

3 1/2 cups of water

1/2 cup of juice from a jar of roasted red peppers

1 t. salt

1/2 cup roasted red peppers, chopped


With a Rice Maker:

In a skillet, saute onions in the olive oil until soft, add the garlic and saute a few minutes longer. Transfer the onions and garlic and any remaining oil into the rice maker, add the quinoa, water, salt, and red pepper juice and cover and start the rice cooker. When the rice maker goes off, add in the chopped roasted red peppers.

Note: If your rice maker has a tendency to stick, add about a teaspoon of extra oil & stir the ingredients before cooking.

Without a Rice Maker:

In a medium sauce pan, saute onions in the olive oil until soft, add the garlic and saute a few minutes longer. Add the quinoa, water, red pepper juice, & salt to the pot. Cover, bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer and cook until all the liquid is absorbed (about 15-20 minutes). When the rice maker goes off, add in the chopped roasted red pepper

This was printed from: We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook
The site URL: http://welaughwecrywecook.com
The Title: Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa
The URL: https://welaughwecrywecook.com/2012/04/26/roasted-red-pepper-quinoa