I'm sure its no secret to most of you that while I try to eat healthy, what I really crave is good old fashioned yummy food. It probably stems from my Southern roots and from the fact that at one point and time I considered sour cream a food group of its own. (And something meant to be enjoyed at every meal.) While I have reformed my eating habits in many ways, there is no point in denying that love bread (of any kind – tortillas and wraps included), anything creamy and I REALLY love crispy Mexican dishes.
Increasingly, I'm learning that if I'm going to stick to this whole healthy eating thing without derailing myself, I need to find dishes that I would look forward to even if I wasn't trying to eat healthy.
Don't get me wrong – I still eat a ton of quinoa salad and have a huge green salad once a day. But I also need to have super yummy dishes in my weekly meal plan for those times when I'm tempted to say, cook some pasta and cover it with Earth Balance and call that dinner. Or have dinner be pita chips and hummus with the emphasis on pita chips.
You know what I mean – the kind of dishes that you say – ok, yeah. I guess its worth
getting off Pinterest stopping work to go fix dinner.
After the success of the Southwestern Quinoa and Chick'n Burritos, (which have quickly become a family favorite) I've become a little obsessed with the idea of making healthier Mexican dishes that I would really look forward to.
Enter these Quinoa Flautas – which I absolutely love. I was actually shocked that they worked so well being baked. The texture was crunchy and I think as perfect as it could get without frying. (Which incidentally, my husband did with the leftovers. ) I think that next time I make this, I'll try to roll them a little tighter. Incidentally if you use corn tortillas, you will have taquitos!
- 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
- ½ cup onion
- Olive oil spray
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon dried red pepper
- ¼ teaspoon Chipotle Chili Powder
- 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 ¼ cups water
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ¼ cup chipotle salsa
- 2 Tablespoons non-dairy cream cheese (optional)
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- 1 cup cheddar or pepper jack cheese (I used Daiya)
- 6 8" tortillas (whole wheat or corn for a GF option)
- Preheat oven to 425. Spray saucepan with olive oil and add onion. Saute for 8 minutes, or until tender. Add rinsed quinoa, cumin, paprika, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, dried red pepper, chipotle powder, cider vinegar and tomato paste. Toss until seeds are covered.
- Add water and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and cover. Cook for 30 to 35 minutes. Remove to heat and allow to sit covered for 5 more minutes. Add chipotle salsa, cilantro and cream cheese (if using) and heat over medium low until well combined (about 5 minutes)
- Heat 1 tablespoon organic canola oil over medium high heat. Cook tortillas for two seconds per side (to soften)and then remove to paper towels to drain.
- Place quinoa mixture on top of the tortilla. Sprinkle with cheese. Roll up and place on a cookie sheet, seam side down.
- Bake for 10 minutes. Flip and bake an additional 5 – 10 minutes, watching closely to avoid burning.
- Alternately, if you are feeling indulgent these could be fried in oil until browned.