Healthy Food Guide: Vege-full chilli with corn quinoa
Updated: May 28
Quinoa is an increasingly popular substitute for rice and other starchy grains in many dishes. It is gluten-free (great for those with Coeliac disease), and happens to contain enough of all nine essential amino acids, making it a "complete protein".
Quinoa is an ancient staple crop, and has been grown in Peru, Chile and Bolivia for thousands of years. It is a member of the Chenopodiaceae family, along with beets, chard and spinach. Quinoa isn't a grain, but rather the seed of a plant, and has a delicate, nutty taste.
Its popularity is down to an impressive nutrient profile. Along with a high protein content, it also contains calcium, magnesium, manganese, iron, potassium, phosphorus, zinc, copper, as well as vitamins E and C, and useful amounts of vitamins B2, B6 and B9. Quinoa also contains the essential fatty acids alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) and linoleic acid (LA), and a decent amount of dietary fibre.
So impressive is this food, that the United Nations named 2013 "International Quinoa Year"!
This delicious Healthy Food Guide recipe combines the nutritional punch of quinoa, with the flavours of beef mince and chilli beans, and a variety of colourful, nutrient-rich vegetables. Better still, it's ready in 30 minutes!
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Lewin, J. (2017). The health benefits of quinoa. [Website]. Retrieved November 30, 2018, from https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/health-benefits-quinoa
Maradini, A., Pirozi, M., Da Silva Borges, J.T., Pinheiro Sant'Ana, H.M., Chaves, J.B.P, & Coimbra, J.S. (2015). Quinoa: Nutritional, functional and anti-nutritional aspects. Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, 57(8).