Jerk Spiced Squash & Black Bean Quinoa

This colourful dish can be eaten hot or cold, making it great as a Sunday meal prep and lunch box option. It’s low fat, high fibre and packed with vitamins and minerals. I’ve used warm caribbean flavours to spice up this dish; don’t be afraid to adjust the seasoning and dressing to make it your own!

nutritional info

Butternut Squash

A one-cup (205-gram) serving of cooked butternut squash provides more than 450% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI) for vitamin A and over 50% of the RDI for vitamin C (1).

Vitamin A is essential for regulating cell growth, eye health, bone health, immune function and foetal growth in pregnancy (2). Both vitamins A and C work as antioxidants in your body, protecting your cells from damage caused by unstable molecules called free radicals.

Quinoa

Over the years, quinoa has been labelled as a super food for its high-nutrient properties.

  • It is relatively high in fibre (2.8g per 100g), which supports regular bowel movements.
  • It is a complete protein source, which means that it provides all nine essential amino acids.
  • It has a relatively low glycemic index (GI) score of 53, which means that it should not cause a rapid spike in blood sugar (3).
  • It’s a good source of antioxidants and minerals, providing more magnesium, iron, fibre, and zinc than many common grains (4)

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 35 minutes
  • Total time: 45 minutes
  • Serves 2 – 3

Ingredients

For the butternut squash

  • 1/2 medium butternut squash (peeled, seeds removed, and cubed)
  • 2 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1tsp Garlic granules 
  • 1tsp jerk seasoning 
  • 1 handful of fresh thyme 
  • Freshly ground black pepper

For the salad

  • 120g quinoa (roughly 280g cooked)
  • 1 can of black beans (drained & rinsed)
  • 2 spring onions (chopped)
  • 1/2 red onion (diced)
  • 1/2 scotch bonnet (finely chopped)
  • 1/2 red pepper (diced)
  • 1/2 yellow pepper (diced)

Dressing

  • 100ml (~ ½ cup) extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • Juice of 1/4 lemon
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C (gas mark 6).
  2. In a large bowl, toss the squash with the oil, garlic granules, jerk seasoning, thyme and black pepper.
  3. Spread out on a prepared baking tray and roast until fork tender (about 35 minutes).
  4. While the squash is cooking, cook the quinoa according to packet instructions and chop all of the salad ingredients.
  5. Place the quinoa and salad ingredients into a bowl and toss together. Add the butternut squash once it’s ready.
  6. In a separate dish, whisk together the dressing ingredients then drizzle over the salad to taste.

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