With fall beginning to show its splendor, we naturally begin to seek out warmth and comfort foods. This vegetarian/vegan recipe is great for pregnant mamas due to its high protein and nutrient content. This is a perfect meal or side dish for lunch or dinner (heck, or even breakfast!)
- Walnuts are one of the richest sources of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids, which are crucial to fetal brain development, and contain protein.
- Spinach is loaded with vitamins A, C, and K, and folic acid.
- Quinoa is an excellent source of protein, complex carbohydrates, B vitamins and manganese (essential for the production of white and red blood cell).
- Butternut squash contains protein, Vitamins A, C, E and B6, and folate, as well as potassium.
Each serving of this dish has 14 grams of protein, 7 mg of iron, 239 mg of calcium, and 9 grams of fiber.
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin Italian olive oil
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 1 medium leek, white and light green parts only, cleaned and sliced thin
- 2 cups reduced-sodium vegetable broth
- 2 cups peeled and diced butternut squash
- 1 cup quinoa
- 1/3 cup raisins
- 2 cups baby spinach or kale
- 2 tablespoons toasted chopped walnuts
- Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add garlic and leeks and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened (5 minutes).
- Add the broth, squash, quinoa and raisins and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the liquid is absorbed and the squash and quinoa are tender (15 to 20 minutes).
- Gently stir in the spinach and cook until it just begins to wilt (2 to 3 minutes).
- Remove from the heat. Sprinkle with walnuts. Serve and enjoy!