I love carbs. I just want to make that clear. I could pretty much live off of bread, pasta, rice, and potatoes. They are my favorite foods. That means that whatever we have for dinner, we almost always have a carb to go along with it. The most popular choice is rice because it’s easy and it goes with all of our Asian and Mexican meals. While I really like rice, I’m beginning to tire of it.
I’ve been in search of other side dishes to go with our meals. I still think Asian meals are best with rice so I’ve left that alone but I have found some other sides for Mexican meals. The first I want to share with you is this creamy cilantro lime quinoa. Quinoa itself is a great substitute for rice. It has a similar consistency, absorbs flavors, and has less carbohydrates then rice.
This side is more of the salad variety with a combination of tomatoes, black beans, and avocado mixed into it. Even though it has a creamy dressing, the base for it is non-fat yogurt so it is actually fairly low in both fat and calories which makes this a great compliment to any Mexican entree.
- ½ c. uncooked quinoa
- ½ c. vegetable broth
- 1 c. black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 large avocado, diced
- 1 c. grape tomatoes, halved
- 1 T. olive oil
- ½ c. nonfat Greek yogurt
- 1 t. white vinegar
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 t. cumin
- 1 t. salt
- ½ t. black pepper
- 1 bunch cilantro, chopped
- 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
- 1 lime
- Place the vegetable broth in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, add the quinoa, and cook according to package directions. Once it is cooked, remove from heat and fluff with a fork. Set aside.
- Combine the olive oil, Greek yogurt, vinegar, garlic, cimin, salt, pepper, cilantro, jalapeno, and the juice of a lime in a bowl. Mix well.
- In a large bowl, add the black beans, tomatoes, and cooked quinoa. Stir to combine. Then add your avocado and the dressing to the bowl (as much as you would like). Gently fold in the dressing to the quinoa mixture. Garnish with a few cilantro leaves and put the remaining dressing on the side.