Apple Cinnamon Cranberry Quinoa

Sorry for the delay today, friends.  I’ve been having some Dreamhost publishing issues, and have been waiting to hit publish all day long!

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, I’m feeling extra inspired to make some festive holiday recipes this week. After you finish making your caramelized onion mashed potatoes, you might want to move on to this next recipe…

Apple Cinnamon Cranberry Quinoa

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Ingredients:  (serves 4)

  • 1 cup dry red or white quinoa
  • 1 medium apple, diced
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
  • salt to taste

To Prepare:  I personally prefer to use red quinoa more than white because I think it’s a bit nuttier and chewier, but you are more than welcome to use whatever you prefer.  Rinse the quinoa over a fine mesh strainer to make sure all the bitter residue is removed. 

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Add the quinoa, apple, and cinnamon stick to a sauce pan over medium-high heat.

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Pour the orange juice and water in, and stir to combine.

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Cook covered for 20-25 minutes, or until the moisture is absorbed and the quinoa is tender.  You might want to remove the lid in the last 5 minutes or so to cook the rest of the moisture out.

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While you wait, sit on the kitchen floor and snap pictures of your dogs.

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Moving right along…  Remove the cinnamon stick, and add the dried cranberries and pepitas.  (Ignore the big orange blob – in my first trial I used dried apricots too, but I found them to make the final dish too sweet.)

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Add salt to taste, and serve as a delicious Thanksgiving side dish!

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Quinoa is a great side dish for a group dinner, because its an excellent complete protein source for any non-meat-eating guests. 

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I love the sweetness of the apples and dried fruit along with the crunch of the pepitas – so delicious.

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I have a bad habit of claiming that every season is my favorite, but I think fall might really be the one.  Fall leaves, giant squash, comfort food – you can’t beat it.

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And with that, it’s time to EAT.

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Enjoy!