This Zucchini Quinoa Casserole is a fantastic healthy make-ahead casserole that the whole family will love. It is gluten free, vegetarian and easy to make vegan.
I feel like we haven’t talked in forever!
I’ve been a little busy.
You know, hanging out with her:
Pretty cute, huh? (If I do say so myself) I had planned to get back to blogging on at least a semi-regular basis last week, but we’ve been having a bit of a rough time.
It seems that my little princess is gluten sensitive. For the first six weeks of her life, Skye was an amazingly happy baby. Of course she fussed. As I’ve tried to explain to the boys – who both think that the world is coming to the end any time she makes an unhappy sound – all babies fuss. But Skye never cried without there being some reason that was relatively easy to figure out.
A little over a week ago all that changed. She cried. For hours. And went from sleeping one 4-5 hour stretch to not sleeping more than two hours at a time. And not napping more than 15 minutes at a time.
It was miserable and I was completely baffled as to what might be going on. More than anything I just wanted my happy girl back.
Of course I considered my diet. I cut out garlic and cabbage and tried to figure out what else it could possibly be. Too many vegetables? Too many beans? I was driving myself crazy.
Sunday morning it was so bad that I send hubby to the farmer’s market without me. The week before we’d had an amazing family day out and I was really wanting him to get some more of the simply amazing gluten free sandwich buns we’d gotten.
Before he left I casually mentioned that he really should verify that the bread was gluten free because it was just so darn delicious. I was joking. Of course it was gluten free, I’d purchased it from a vendor while standing underneath their very large gluten free bread sign.
As it turns out it wasn’t. Apparently, I’d picked up the only bread that they sold that wasn’t gluten free. And I’d eaten it just about every day for a week. (I wasn’t feeling good either and my skin was a wreck but I attributed that to 7 weeks of no sleep and exhaustion.)
When he came home and told me, it occurred to me that I had my answer as to what had been going on, but honestly I was doubtful. Neither of the boys have ever shown signs to gluten sensitivity, though Alex did have colic for about 5 months which was strikingly similar to what I’d been experiencing in the last week.
Still, I vowed to be very vigilant of every bite that went into my mouth going forward and crossed my fingers that it would at least help a little.
Miraculously, my happy girl slowly reappeared about 36 hours after her last exposure to gluten. And she’s been happy for the last 5 days straight! We had an amazing weekend, though I’m pretty sure I annoyed Vincent by saying “I’m just so happy that was the issue” at least once an hour.
Looking back, I have to wonder if Alex suffered from a food sensitivity too. Obviously beating myself up over that isn’t productive, so let’s talk food!
Today’s Italian Zucchini Quinoa Casserole is a super easy weeknight meal. It’s an easy one to play around with too, so feel free to add meat, tofu or tempeh or substitute other vegetables. (Sauteed spinach would be good too!)
Italian Zucchini Quinoa Casserole
- Olive oil spray
- 3 zucchini sliced and cut into half moons
- 1 onion chopped fine
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 cups cooked quinoa
- 28 ounces diced tomatoes drained
- 1 tablespoon basil fresh or 1 teaspoon dried
- 2 teaspoons oregano fresh or ¾ teaspoon dried
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper fresh ground
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella or Daiya Shreds
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan or Vegan Parmesan
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a skillet well with olive oil and heat to medium. Add zucchini and cook for 5 minutes, until tender. Remove zucchini from skillet. Res-pray skillet and add onion. Cook for 8 minutes. Add garlic and quinoa and cook for 3 minutes more, stirring often. Add tomatoes, basil, oregano, red pepper, salt and pepper and cook for 10 minutes.
- Remove from heat and stir in zucchini. Transfer mixture to a 13 x 9 baking pan. Sprinkle with cheeses and bake for 30 minutes.
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