Kale Pesto Quinoa with Spinach & Eggs

The Casual Classic // Pesto Quinoa

Three of my favorite things combined right here: pesto, quinoa, and eggs. This is one of my absolute favorite weeknight dinner choices, It's super simple and quick to make, and it's absolutely delicious and satisfying. It's full of protein and fiber and tons of other good for you yummy things. I've always been a fan of quinoa bowls because you can literally have them for any meal of the day and top them with anything you wish, but I really do have to say, this is my favorite quinoa bowl recipe so far. 

I almost always throw an egg on the top of my quinoa bowls, but this is totally optional. I like that it adds a bit of extra protein, plus, I just love eggs! You could also add some shrimp or chicken to the top, which would be delicious too! One other thing to note is that you do need a food processor if you are going to make homemade pesto. I make my own for this recipe, but can always buy pre-made pesto to use too. As for making this vegan, just omit the parmesan cheese (nutritional yeast is a great substitute).

The Casual Classic // Pesto Quinoa

i'm telling you guys... everyone you cook this for will love it. Even your boyfriends, husbands, etc. etc. will - I promise. Nick eats everything I cook for him (although this is really the only way I can seem to sneak kale into his diet). So... even the non-kale fans will enjoy this. You can also just tell them it's normal pesto. It'll be our little secret! Read on below for recipe details and directions!

Pesto quinoa (7 of 8).jpg

Recipe:

  • Pesto:
    • 2 cups kale (stems removed)
    • 1 cup basil
    • 1/3 cup olive oil
    • juice from 1/2 lemon 
    • 1 tsp himalayan salt
    • 1/4 cup pine nuts
    • 5 cloves garlic
    • 1/3 cup parmesan (or nutritional yeast if vegan)
  • Quinoa bowl:
    • 2 cups uncooked quinoa
    • 6 cups (or 1 bag) baby spinach
    • 1/2 cup homemade pesto (or more depending on how you want it to taste)
    • 1/2 teaspoon himalayan salt
    • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese + more for topping (for vegan, omit completely or add some nutritional yeast)
    • 1 teaspoon turmeric (optional)
    • 2 organic eggs (optional)
    • Organic chicken broth (to cook quinoa)

Directions:

  1. To make the pesto, all you need to do is throw all the ingredients into a food processor and mix well. Voila!! 
  2. Cook the quinoa + chicken broth according to the instructions on the quinoa package. Again, if you're making this vegan, you can just use water.
  3. When the quinoa is done cooking, turn the heat to medium, add the turmeric (this is optional - I add it as a little anti-inflammatory health boost), spinach, pesto, parmesan/nutritional yeast, and salt. Stir until the mixture is well mixed and the spinach is wilted.
  4. Cook the eggs in a separate pan. You can cook however many you want depending on how many people you're serving. I usually do one egg per bowl.
  5. Scoop the quinoa mixture into bowls and top with the fried egg. Serve immediately and top with parmesan cheese!