I may have come across the perfect autumn meal! Last time I went grocery shopping, I got some organic butternut squash. The awesome fall weather we have been having lately inspired me to get some of this yummy fruit that is more commonly used as a vegetable. The list of health benefits of butternut squash is extensive. Some of those benefits include the following:
- helps to boost the immune system – high in vitamin C
- Great for the heart and the bowels because of it’s high fiber content
- aids in blood sugar regulation
- contains five B vitamins (B1, B3, B6, folate, pantothenic acid), thus is great for the nervous system
- excellent for eye health
- full of antioxidants helping to prevent lung, colon, breast, and prostate cancers
- reduces inflammation
- helps control cholesterol levels and helps with weight management
- contains adequate levels of minerals like iron, zinc, copper, calcium, potassium, and phosphorus
On top of all that, it is great for your tastebuds, because it is DELICIOUS! I went on Pinterest to get some different ideas for meals incorporating this squash, and this pin jumped out at me:
Just the presentation of this dish screams “AUTUMN IS HERE”! I made a few minor changes to the recipe here. Instead of using dried cranberries (which are often filled with sugars), I used fresh ones, and I just roasted them right along with the squash. Doing this basically gave me “oven dried” cranberries with that yummy tangy flavor without all the extra sugar. I added brussels sprouts just because it sounded yummy in my head (good decision, because it was delish!) Instead of making the maple vinaigrette, I just used a mixture of olive oil, apple cider vinegar, stevia, and sea salt. I also left out the pepitas (toasted pumpkin seeds), but this was an accident (Oops!). I just forgot to add them, but the dish still turned out wonderful. This meal is PERFECT for a cozy autumn afternoon or evening. I think it would also be great with some roasted chicken added in. It’s easy, healthy, filling, and so so tasty!
QUINOA WITH ROASTED SQUASH, CRANBERRIES, AND BRUSSEL SPROUTS
Ingredients: amount of each ingredient is up to you
- Butternut Squash, cut into bite size cubes
- Brussel sprouts, cut in half
- Fresh cranberries cut in half
- apple cider vinegar
- olive oil
- sea salt
1.) Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2.) Chop the butternut squash, brussel sprouts and cranberries. Put in a bowl, drizzle with olive oil then sprinkle with nutmeg, stevia, and sea salt. Toss to coat.
3.) Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, then spread the squash, sprouts and cranberries onto baking sheet evenly.
4.) Roast in oven for 30 minutes at 400 degrees.
5.) While the squash is roasting, prepare your quinoa as directed on the package. When done, drizzle with olive oil and apple cider vinegar. Sprinkle with a bit of stevia and sea salt.
6.) When the squash is done, mix with the quinoa and serve.
Happy Autumn! Enjoy! 🙂