Protein Pesto Quinoa

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I was so happy when this meal came together as it was just a combination of leftovers I had at the end of last week. In the future, I will be looking for these specific ingredients in order to recreate this simple delight. It’s totally packed with protein, making it the perfect meal post workout. Nevertheless, the nutrients here will work wonders on your body at any point in the day.

There is a common misconception that people who don’t eat meat can’t be getting enough protein, however this is not the case. Although meat can provide a source of complete protein, so too can certain plant-based foods. Quinoa is probably the best way for a plant eater to ensure they are getting all the protein they need. It contains all 9 essential amino acids and it such a versatile food which can be used as the accompaniment to chillis, curries and salads like this one. There is such a variety of protein sources in this meal including, black-eyed beans, brazil nuts, lentils and of course quinoa; you’ll finish feeling satisfied, without any digestion problems and fuelled with energy!

Ingredients:

1/3c black eyed beans (or another bean)
1/3c quinoa
1/3c lentils
1 large grated carrot
A handful of olives
1 large tomato

For the pesto:
1/3c brazil nuts
1 small handful of rocket
1 handful of basil leaves
1 small slash each of water and olive oil
The juice of half a lime
A sprinkling of salt

As always, I would double up and make enough for at least 2 portions so that I can enjoy it again the next day while saving time. It’s an especially good idea to make more of the pesto as it can be combined into different dishes and means you only have to wash the blender once – result!

Firstly, cook your lentils and quinoa in 1 cup of boiling water with a splash of apple cider vinegar or whatever you like to flavour it. This will take about 15 minutes. While they cook, grate the carrot and blend together all the ingredients for the pesto. Lastly, stir the pesto along with the grated carrot into the lentil and quinoa mix which will have now absorbed all the water. Top with the rinsed olives and sliced tomato.

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