Cauliflower-“Quinoa” Taco Salad a.k.a. I’m-Taking-You-All-the-Way-to-Mehico-&-We-Ain’t-Coming-Back
Hi my loves! <3
Better late than never, right? A couple days ago I was in my kitch (a.k.a. my happy place) at 5:30AM figuring out my meal plan of the day & I was feeling the Mexican vibes & so, an IDEA was born! Why not attempt to make a “Cauli-Quinoa TACO SALAD?” Yep, you read right, how freaking awesome does that sound? Well, let me tell you babes, it was more than awesome. GUYS, I’m taking you all the way to Mehico with this one. (Side note: At this point, #saladgoals & #saladqueen have legit become UNDERSTATEMENTS. I’ve taken it to a WHOLE. NEW. LEVEL. (*pats shoulder* #braggingrightsobtained #sorrynotsorry). I present you with my Cauliflower-“Quinoa” Taco Salad a.k.a. I’m-Taking-You-All-the-Way-to-Mehico-&-We-Ain’t-Coming-Back.
Let me break it down for you quickly before we get into the nitty gritty of putting this baby together. Essentially, I used my bestie, a.k.a. my food processor (which, by the way, I could not be more thankful for these days) to grind the cauliflower & turn it into QUINOA!!! Legit, LIKE MAGIC, PEOPLE! I chopped up some red onions, cherry tomatoes, cilantro, threw in some BLACK BEANS <3 (I HAVE AN ALL AROUND LOVE RELATIONSHIP WITH THESE BABIES, so you can imagine that they were the focal point of my salad, obvs., full of protein & fibre, hardly any sodium, BASICALLY, MY REASON FOR BEING) & some organic frozen (Well… I defrosted it first, DUH!) sweet corn.
AS ALWAYS (Well… most of the time), I like to use homemade dressings simply because I do my best not to eat any refined sugars, so I whipped up a quick vinaigrette made up of lime juice, pure organic maple syrup, apple cider vinegar, cumin, chili powder, smoked paprika, garlic powder, organic Himalayan pink sea salt & freshly ground black pepper (UHM… Spice game strong?) & BOOM – THIS BABY WAS BORN, BUT SHE DIED SHORTLY AFTER (a.k.a. I GOBBLED HER UP IN MINUTES & JUST LIKE THAT… SHE WAS GONE!). SHE WAS SO DELISH. SO PERFECT. AND BEST OF ALL, SO CLEAN, SO NOURISHING & SO HEALTHY. I guess she disappeared because she was just too good to be true…WEH.
OH & would you believe me if I told you that the salad alone provided 13 GRAMS OF PROTEIN & 10 GRAMS OF FIBRE?… Not to mention all my side dishes, BUT LET’S NOT GET INTO THAT (LAWL). I eat enough for three, remember? OKAY, now back to this baby. I bet you’re all drooling at the thought of her & you just want to know what you need to whip her up, so here goes! (BY THE WAY, LAST THING: IN CASE YOU WERE WONDERING, THIS BABE MAKES FOR THE PERFECT “DETOX-LUNCH” AFTER THE CONTINUOUS FOOD COMA US J-PEOPLE HAVE BEEN IN POST-SEDER 1 & 2, A.K.A. MAKE HER TOMORROW!!!!!): Ok, INGREDIENTS, INGREDIENTS!:
- 200g of cauliflower (Try to cut off as much of the stems as possible. We’ve been over this my loves. We must be kind to our food processors. We must love & respect them in return for all that they do to permit us to be lazy on a daily basis, ok?)
- 1 sweet white onion, CHOPPED;
- 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, sliced in halves;
- 1/4 cup of fresh cilantro;
- 1 15.5 oz. can of organic black beans (GUYS, BLACK BEANS ARE LIFE. I honestly had no idea how nutritious they were until I recently started reading a lot about health foods & it turns out, they are probably one of the BEST beans out there SO LOAD UP ON THESE BABIES, even if they don’t look like the most appetizing thing in the world, NOURISH YOUR BODIES);
- 100g of frozen organic sweet corn (DEFROSTED, duh!!!);
- 40-60g of ricotta or goat cheese (Up to you! BUT GUYS, can I just tell you one thing? When you mix one of these two cheeses in with the rest of the salad… UTTER PERFECTION IS BORN. The cauli-“quinoa” becomes all creamy. & smooth ZOMFG.. UGH SOMEBODY HELP. I’M FANTASIZING AGAIN);
- 1/4 tsp. of cumin;
- 1/4 tsp. of chili powder;
- 1/4 tsp. of smoked paprika;
- 1 tbsp. of pure organic maple syrup;
- 1/4 cup of fresh lime juice;
- 1 tbsp. of organic raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar;
- 1 clove of garlic, minced;
- Organic pink Himalayan sea salt & freshly ground black pepper for seasoning;
- OPTIONAL: Parmesan, mozzarella, cheddar, or NUTRITIONAL YEAST (my go-to, DIUH!!!) & AVOCADO SLICES for topping! YOU CAN LET YOUR MIND RUN WILD HERE… think jalapeño peppers, tortilla chips, MORE BEANS, salsa, pico de gallo… GUYS, I COULD GO ON FOR DAYS WITH IDEAS, but then you’d accuse me of rambling, so I think I’ll stop here for now… I DID SAY FOR NOW.
NOW, I don’t think whipping this baby up could be much simpler… BUT, I’ll tell you how to do it step-by-step anyways since I love y’all & since well… isn’t that the point of a blog that provides recipes? Ya… I think so! ANYWHO, I’LL SHADDUP. Here’s what you gotta do to combine all them beautiful savoury Mexican ingredients & create this bowl I like to call PERFECTION:
- Add your cauliflower to your food processor & pulse until you obtain a rice/quinoa-like texture (DON’T FORGET THAT BEFORE YOU PUT THE CAULI IN THE FOOD PROCESSOR, YOU SHOULD REMOVE AS MUCH OF THE STEMS AS POSSIBLE). Once processed, add your cauli-“quinoa” to a large metal mixing bowl & set aside;
- Chop up your sweet onions, cherry tomatoes & cilantro (Guys, am I the only one who melts at the scent of fresh cilantro? Like… I SWEAR, ADD THIS STUFF TO ANY DISH & SHE SPICES IT UP INSTANTLY. I CAN’T EVEN);
- Drain dem beans!;
- Defrost dat corn!;
- Add all vegetables to the bowl of cauli-“quinoa”… The sight… SO EFFING BEAUTIFUL. The colours. The flavours… At this point, I WAS LEGIT DYING, BUT THEN, I REMEMBERED THAT I HAD A VINAIGRETTE TO MAKE, SO I FORCED MYSELF TO STAY ALIVE;
- Combine the cumin, chili powder, smoked paprika, maple syrup, lime juice, apple cider vinegar, garlic, sea salt & freshly ground paper in a bowl & whisk all this beautifulness together until combined, a.k.a. UNTIL YOUR PERFECT VINAIGRETTE IS BORN.
- Add any optional toppings to your mixing bowl (A.K.A. Fill your mixing bowl to the rim because your mind is going cray-cray & you just want to throw all types of beautiful toppings on this baby. And well… since you couldn’t choose, YOU CHOSE THEM ALL!!! #NOTJUDGINGYOU #IDIDTHESAME #GUILTYASCHARGED);
- Pour the beautifulness that is this homemade-clean-eating-light-sweet-&-savoury vinaigrette all over your cauli-“quinoa” & veggies & MIXXXXXX TO COMBINE. AND JUST LIKE THAT, YOUR CAULI-“QUINOA” TACO SALAD IS BORN. LET’S SEE HOW LONG IT TAKES YOU TO KILL HER.
Admit this one was SUPER SIMPLE, QUICK & EASY? I know… I’m freaking awesome, people. IT’S BECAUSE I CARE ABOUT YOU GUYS, obvs.
AND NOW, THE MOMENT YOU ARE ALL ALWAYS WAITING FOR… KELLY’S FOOD PICS, DUH (OH RIGHT, DRUMROLL PLEASE):
Enjoy mes amours!!! XOXO (Oh & LAST THING, FOR REAL THIS TIME, IN CASE YOU WERE STILL WONDERING, NO, MY CAULI-OBSESSION WILL NEVER GO AWAY. Me & Cauli FOR LIFE, okay?) <3