It’s a fresh new day! Have you discovered new recipes? Or are you feeling uninspired from the same old pale and crusty chicken breasts you ate yesterday (just a guess!)? Are you tired of cooking delicious and extravagant meals every single time just for yourself? Well, look no further. This article about Quinoa Brown Rice might help resolve some of your problems (at least in the kitchen!).
Let me introduce meal preparation into your daily life. Meal preps are an activity of preparing and cooking big meals that can last for a week. This helps you reduce the time spent on preparing ingredients. It also spares you from contemplating which among grandma’s cookbook recipes will make it to the kitchen for the day. It does wonders!
I’m in my fifth week and I can honestly say that I saved so much time and money. The money I saved can be reallocated to other healthier ingredients that may cost more. The first recipe is the chicken and quinoa brown rice recipe, I specifically used this combo for its nutritional and heartful taste. This can be allocated for one specific mealtime of the day so you won’t get tired of the meals you prepared.
Quinoa and brown rice are rich in protein and amino acids. Incorporating these into your diet can surely help you not think about eating burgers and fries all time. These healthy grains can fill you up quickly as they also contain carbohydrates and micronutrients such as manganese phosphorus, and magnesium to name a few. In return, this helps you to actually eat without starving yourself and lose weight.
Quinoa Brown Rice-based Meal
- 3 ½ cups brown rice*
- 3 ½ cups quinoa*
- 3 pcs. chicken breast
- 3 pcs. bell peppers
- lemon slices
- 1 tbps. cumin powder
- extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
- pesto sauce
- 2 cups fresh basil leaves
- 1 ¼ cups chopped walnuts
- 4 cloves garlic
- ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
- ¼ cup EVOO
- Slice the bell peppers and onion beforehand. Make sure to cut horizontally and not too thin.
- Prepare the brown rice and quinoa. Mix the brown rice grains and quinoa together. Remember to rinse and wash these first before cooking. You don’t want to risk any little pests hanging around in there! To tell you that it’s now ready to cook, the residue water shouldn’t be too murky.
- Now, you can put the rinsed grains into a rice cooker or a stove pot half filled with water. It should be a 2:1 water to grain ratio. Let it cook or boil down for 10-20 minutes. You may add salt for flavor. It should be mushy and soft in texture once finished! Set this aside. You're halfway there! This healthy grains combination will be used later when preparing the final lunchboxes.
- Prepare the baking pan and layout the aluminum foil or parchment paper on top. Arrange the chicken breasts, the sliced bell peppers, and onions in an orderly fashion. The ingredients shouldn’t be jumbled up and cramped together. Give each ingredient sufficient space to properly bake it.
- The fun part starts now! Drizzle the laid-out chicken breasts, bell peppers, and onion strips with extra virgin olive oil. It is great to use EVOO for cooking because it contains oleic acid. (Let's dive into a little bit of chemistry. Oleic acid is a monounsaturated fatty acid that has anti-inflammatory effects which preserve our bodies’ overall wellness. However, even though refined olive oils are more likely used in our kitchens, these have a higher smoke point which releases free radicals or the bad stuff. These are inflammatory compounds and when released can cause oxidative stress. Therefore, these compounds affect the body’s way of growing and proliferating cells. You don’t want any of that! After that little chemistry lecture, don’t forget to apply the EVOO generously. Don’t worry too much about this oxidative stress stuff. Moderation is always the key.)
- After the extra virgin olive oil step, sprinkle the cumin powder onto the chicken breasts on each side. Massage the chicken breasts to enhance the flavors of the cumin powder. You may also use taco seasoning as an alternative.
- Then, sprinkle salt and pepper onto the veggies: the sliced bell peppers and onions. You can use Salt Bae’s technique for sassiness.
- Add the pesto sauce on top of the cumin powdered chicken breasts. You can also use spaghetti sauce as an alternative.
- Bake this for around 400°F or 200°C for 25-30 minutes. It shouldn’t be too burnt. Put out the baking pan. It must smell really good! I’m drooling just thinking about it!
- Cut the baked tomato-ey chicken breasts into fine strips.
- Prepare the containers or lunchboxes. Divide the cooked quinoa brown rice from Step 2 into seven lunchboxes. Top the quinoa brown rice with the baked vegetables from the baking pan. Then lastly, layer the chicken pesto strips and decorate the lemon slices for the extra zing! Voilà.
- In a food blender, blend and mix all the basil leaves, walnuts, garlic, and cheese. Pour the EVOO while stirring. And add the salt and pepper. It should reach a creamy texture. If you don’t want to do this, you can also use store-bought pesto sauce.
- You can mix up the recipe with salmon if you want omega fatty acids on your menu. Adding baked corn, tomatoes and carrots are just some of the vegetables you could also bake! It would be great to stick with the quinoa brown rice as a base to help you shred off some extra fat.
The combinations of these vegetables and protein meats are limitless! Be creative! It’s never too late to spice up your menu and your kid’s school lunches as well. Always remember to store these properly by refrigerating the pre-made meals for up to three days at most.
What are you waiting for? Get your healthy ingredients like quinoa brown rice, extra virgin olive oil, and organic cumin powder. Start meal prepping today! Have a healthy, efficient, and more productive week!