Thinking Out Loud

3 Quick-Fix Dinners for Easy Weekend Eats

By Keryn Nicolson

Happy Autumn you lovely readers, you. So I haven’t done a recipe post in a while and I figured I should since the weekend is practically over and it’s back to work for most of us tomorrow. I don’t know about you but at times I can flood my Pinterst board with super complicated and unrealistic dinner ideas but when Sunday (or in this case in a three day weekend Monday) comes a long, I’m like...nope. So here are three quick and easy dinners you can whip out in less than 20.

One-Pot Spinach and Artichoke Pasta (adapted from Damn Delicious)

Ingredients needed:

12 oz pasta of choice

1 can quartered artichoke hearts (drained)

1 large onion—thinly sliced

1-2 cloves garlic –thinly sliced

1 tsp basil (dried is fine)

1 tsp oregano (dried is fine)

½ tsp crushed red pepper

Salt to taste

2 cups spinach

1 cup Parmesan cheese

2 tbsp olive oil

**In a large saucepot over medium heat: Combine pasta, artichoke hearts, onion, garlic, spices and 4 ½ cups of water. Season with salt to taste. Bring to a boil and then simmer until pasta is al dente (chewy but not hard). Once the liquid is reduced (approx. 15 mins) now stir in spinach, cheese and olive oil. BAM!

Night Shade Stir Fry (My own recipe)

Ingredients needed:

Rice (1-2 cups of rice—depending on how many people you’re feeding or if you want left overs. Who are we kidding, of course you want left overs) I use Sushi rice because of its chewy texture.

1 Eggplant

2-3 handfuls of mushrooms

1 medium red onion

2 cloves garlic

*Dice all veggies so they’re roughly the same size. That way they’ll cook through the same.

Sauce:

½ cup Liquid Aminos (by BRAGG or Soy Sauce….but Liquid Aminos is SO much better)

3TBSP Sesame Oil

3 TBSP Apple Cider Vinegar

1 tsp garlic powder

1-2 tsp agave or honey (or sugar) to taste

**Put sauce in a jar or something you can shake it up in. Shake well, pour over all your diced veggies then transfer to a hot skillet. You may need to add a bit more sesame oil to the skillet to prevent sticking. Once eggplant looks like it’s starting to get all soft and dark…you can remove from heat. Add on top of rice, OPTIONAL add fresh Cilantro on top and dash of liquid aminos. BAM.

Baked Sweet Potato Bean Bowl

Ingredients:

1 large sweet potato

½ can black beans

½ avocado

½ bag frozen grilled peppers and onions (I get mind from Trader Joes) or you can just slice an onion and bell pepper and sauté for about 10 minutes!

Cheese –optional—I actually like this with Feta but you can add a little cheddar or jack

1 handful of fresh cilantro

**Take a fork and poke the sweet potato several times all over. Wrap it in some tin foil and bake for approx. 20 mins. While that’s baking, rinse the black beans, slice up some avocado, heat up some of the frozen onions and peppers and grate some cheese (if it’s not already). Once potato is done, season with garlic powder and salt. Layer all ingredients over your sweet potato, top with fresh cilantro. You get a healthy low-glycemic index carb AND plant based protein with the black beans.

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