If you like casseroles that are family-friendly, you are going to fall in love with this Italian Quinoa Casserole. With a delicious fresh tomato topping, this cheesy casserole is pretty enough for entertaining, and healthy enough that you can feel good about serving it.
It is hard to believe how quickly this month has flown! I've been so busy that it feel like a haven't even thought about Halloween.
It is all my kids are talking about, though.
Last year, we had a terrible storm on Halloween, and the kids missed trick-or-treating. It was pretty sad for the boys since we'd spent a lot of time making their costumes.
This year, I declared early September that we would order costumes. I then reminded the boys on a weekly basis that we needed to get it done.
The boys treated the decision like it is one that was going to impact them for a lifetime. Despite my best intentions we just got them ordered yesterday from Amazon and are anxiously awaiting Saturday delivery.
Skye is going to wear the princess costume that she was supposed to wear last year.
It is so funny the difference a year makes! Last year at two she wasn't even kind of interested in trying it on.
This year, she wants to wear her costume for a couple of hours a day.
I'm crossing my fingers that it lasts until Monday.
This Italian Baked Quinoa with Fresh Tomato Topping is just the type of dish that I like to serve in the days leading up to a big holiday where I know everyone will be indulging.
[clickToTweet tweet="Italian Baked Quinoa with Fresh Tomato Topping #quinoa #glutenfree" quote="Italian Baked Quinoa with Fresh Tomato Topping #quinoa #glutenfree"]Are you ready for Halloween?
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Italian Quinoa Casserole
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 onion chopped
- 1 green bell pepper chopped
- 1 lb ground beef or vegan beef substitute I like Beyond Meat
- 2 - 24 ounce jars tomato sauce
- 14.5 ounces fire roasted tomatoes
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 12 ounces mozzarella shredded or Daiya shreds
- 6 cups cooked quinoa
- 12 ounces provolone cheese sliced or Daiya mozzarella shreds
- Fresh Tomato Topping
- 2 cups grape tomatoes halved
- 1/4 cup fresh basil chopped
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 13 x 9 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
- Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add onion and pepper and cook for 8 minutes. Add ground beef or beef substitute and cook until browned, about 5 minutes. Drain if necessary. Add tomato sauce, tomatoes, vinegar, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, crushed red pepper and salt. Reduce heat to medium low and cook for 15 minutes.
- Place mozzarella and quinoa in a large bowl and toss with sauce. Transfer to prepared dish and top with provolone.
- Bake for 25 minutes, until bubbly. Let stand for 10 minutes and then top with Fresh Tomato Topping.
- Meanwhile, To make the Fresh Tomato Topping, combine tomatoes, basil, vinegar, olive oil, garlic, sea salt and ground black pepper and allow to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
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Wish me luck!