Are you planning a gluten-free Thanksgiving menu? If you’re new to the gluten free world, Thanksgiving can be fairly overwhelming! Well, I have a couple years under my belt, and I’m excited to share some allergy-safe, diabetic-friendly Thanksgiving recipes with you! Your Thanksgiving won’t suffer one bit, but it will require some planning (just like a normal Thanksgiving). Be on the look-out for a post I’m going to publish in the next couple weeks, which will be a collection of allergy-friendly, diabetic approved Thanksgiving recipes to help you plan your menu! This Apple Quinoa Stuffing will certainly be on the list!
One resource I highly recommend if you are living a gluten-free lifestyle is a subscription to, Simply Gluten Free Magazine. This magazine is full of awesome recipes and ideas, and many of them are both dairy and gluten free. They even have sections for Paleo recipes, and each issue includes a few articles on health, nutrition, and research related to gluten! You can click on the link I’m sharing to subscribe.
Quinoa is a great grain for diabetics and pretty much anyone who wants to eat a healthy diet! It is gluten-free, loaded with protein, fiber, iron, vitamin E, magnesium, and potassium. The protein in quinoa is a complete protein, containing all 9 essential amino acids. The carbohydrates in quinoa are complex, and it has a low rating on the Glycemic Index. It is also an alkaline-forming food, which will keep your gut flora balanced and reduce inflammation. You can feel good about eating Apple Quinoa Stuffing! (On a side note, have you ever noticed how gross you feel after eating most bread-based stuffings? Yuck!)
Quinoa Apple Stuffing is very easy to make, and you can make it ahead of time, freeze, then reheat it for Thanksgiving Day. If you want the apples in this dish to be crisp and green, make sure you don’t add them until the last second! Another benefit of adding the apples right before serving is that raw apples are better for you than baked. They retain more vitamin C and other helpful nutrients!
Before we get to the recipe for Vegetable Quinoa Stuffing I want to invite you to join with others who are making healthy changes, if you haven’t done so already. I’d love to walk alongside you in your journey towards wholeness and health! Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full!” Freedom from food addictions is part of having a truly full life.
- 3 Cups Cooked Tri-color Quinoa (cook it in vegetable broth instead of water)
- 1 Cup Chopped Celery
- 1 Cup Chopped Carrots
- 1 Small White Onion, Chopped
- 4 Cloves Garlic, Chopped
- 1 1/2 Cups Baby Spinach, Cut in Half
- 1 Cup Chopped Walnuts
- 1 1/2 Cups Granny Smith Apples, Chopped
- 1/2 Tsp Celery Seeds
- Pink Himalayan Salt and Pepper to Taste (I LOVE the flavor of this salt, and it has some great health benefits, too)
- 1-2 Tbsp Coconut Oil for Sautéing
To make Apple Quinoa Stuffing, start by cooking the dry quinoa according to package instructions, using broth, instead of water. You will need about 1 ½ cups of dry quinoa to make 3 cups cooked. The ratio is 2 parts liquid to 1 part dry quinoa. While the quinoa simmers, prepare the vegetables.
In a large non-stick ceramic pan over medium heat, sauté the carrots, onions, and celery in the coconut oil until soft and light brown. Add the garlic for the last two minutes of sautéing. Sprinkle with salt (use less if you cooked the quinoa in broth), celery seeds, and pepper.
You can actually stuff your turkey with quinoa stuffing, but I recommend cooking and serving them separately. Turkeys don’t cook evenly when they are stuffed, so you’ll either end up with an under-cooked bird, or one that is dried out (we wouldn’t want to recreate that scene from “Christmas Vacation”).
To bake your quinoa stuffing, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Stir together the warm vegetables, apples, spinach, walnuts, and quinoa in a large bowl, then pour the mixture into a 2 quart casserole dish. Bake for about 15 minutes, just to get the top a little crispy. Serve warm and enjoy! If you make the stuffing ahead of time, don’t bake it until right before you are ready to serve. If your stuffing is cold you’ll need to cook it longer than 15 minutes (try 30). You may want to add the apples just for the last 10 minutes of baking! Serve the quinoa stuffing in the dish you baked it in, or this beautiful pumpkin orange serving dish (Thanksgiving is a good time to go fancy!). Enjoy and be thankful!