PER SERVING (1/6th of recipe, 1 stuffed pepper): 180 calories, 5g fat, 405mg sodium, 27g carbs, 7g fiber, 10g sugars, 9g protein -- PointsPlus® value 4*
Quinoa. That's right, we're going there. Don't fear these quirky grains -- they're tasty, good for you, and easier to cook than you might think!
2 zucchini, stem ends removed, halved lengthwise
1 red onion, sliced into rounds with rings intact
1/2 eggplant, stem end removed, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1 tsp. olive oil
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper
1/2 cup uncooked quinoa (like the kind by Arrowhead Mills)
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1 tsp. chopped garlic
1 cup crumbled reduced-fat/light feta cheese (like the kind by Valbreso)
6 large red bell peppers (look for peppers that sit flat when stem sides are up)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Spray 2 large baking sheets with nonstick spray. Place zucchini, onion, and eggplant on sheets in a single layer. Set aside.
In a small bowl, combine vinegar, oil, salt, and black pepper. Mix well. Using your fingers or a brush, evenly spread half of the mixture on top of the veggies on the sheets. Flip veggies, and spread with the remaining mixture.
Bake in the oven until veggies are tender, 20 - 25 minutes. Set aside to cool, but leave oven on.
Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees.
Meanwhile, cook quinoa according to package instructions. (Typically, as follows for 1/2 cup: Combine quinoa with 1 cup water in a small pot on the stove. Bring to a boil, and then reduce heat to low. Cover and let simmer for 15 minutes, or until water has evaporated and quinoa is fully cooked.)
Transfer quinoa to a large bowl. Once baked veggies are cool enough to handle, roughly chop and add to the large bowl. Add basil, garlic, and feta cheese, and stir thoroughly. Set aside.
Carefully slice off the top (stem side) of each bell pepper, about a half-inch slice from each. Remove and discard seeds. Place peppers cut-side up in a deep 9" X 13" baking pan. If peppers do not sit flat, gently lean them against the pan sides for support.
Evenly distribute the quinoa-veggie mixture among the bell peppers, about 1 cup each. Bake until peppers are soft and filling is hot, 20 - 25 minutes.
MAKES 6 SERVINGS