Quinoa, Sausage, Kale and Sweet Potato Skillet

Adapted from Penzey's Spices


2 sweet potatoes
2 TB. coconut oil
1 lb. sausage (I use pork sausage from my local farmer)
1 small onion
1 garlic clove, crushed (or 1/4 tsp. dry)
1/2 TB. fresh sage, chopped (or 1/2 tsp. dry)
1/2 tsp. paprika
bunch Tuscan kale, ribs removed and thinly sliced
2 Cups (2/3 cup or 75 g, uncooked - prepared per package instructions) cooked quinoa
1-2 TB. or your favorite spice blend, to taste. I use Penzey's Mural of Flavor, which contains shallots, onion, garlic, lemon peel, citric acid, chives and orange peel. Any blend will do.

Preheat oven to 400°F (205° C). Dice the sweet potatoes and place on a baking sheet on the and roast for about 25 minutes or until soft and tender. 

While the sweet potatoes roast, heat a skillet over medium heat. Add the coconut oil and heat until hot. Add the sausage, onion or shallots, garlic, sage and paprika. Cook, stirring frequently, until the sausage is crumbled and no longer pink. Stir in the kale, cover and cook until the kale starts to wilt, about 3 minutes. Add the sweet potatoes, cooked quinoa and spice blend. Cook for about 1 minute and then serve.

Southwest Quinoa Salad

Another totally flexible recipe! I made this up with what I thought sounded good. If there's something you don't like, skip it. Want to add something you do like? Go for it!

Often, this type of dish includes green onions and garlic - a delicious and healthy add - but my body can't handle raw alliums (a family that includes all types of onions and garlic).

For additional protein, excellent with diced chicken.


  • 1 cup (170g) cooled quinoa (any color), prepared per package directions with water or broth (I often use veggie broth).  I typically make a big pot and use leftover quinoa for this dish.
  • 1 can black beans - drained and rinsed
  • 1 bell pepper, diced (I prefer red, orange or yellow)
  • 1 small cucumber, diced
  • Cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • Small avocado, diced
  • Cilantro, finely chopped


  • Juice of 2 small or 1 large lime
  • 3 - 4 Tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper or to taste

Gently combine the quinoa, beans and vegetables in a large bowl.  Combine dressing ingredients in a small bowl, stirring well.  Add dressing to the quinoa blend, stir and serve.

So easy!

Chicken and Veggie Quinoa

This is a super versatile recipe that comes together quickly, especially when using "leftovers." I had leftover cooked quinoa and a chicken breast and combined them with an assortment of vegetables- use whatever you like - and blended it all with olive oil, lime juice, and a touch of cayenne for some kick.  Can also be vegetarian by replacing the chicken with black beans.  No magic to the quantities either - inclued however much you want.


  • 1 cup (200g) Quinoa - cooked according to package directions
  • Diced or shredded cooked chicken breast (or substitute black beans)
  • Small bunch kale - stems removed, cleaned and torn into pieces
  • Olive oil
  • Your favorite roasting vegetables - I like bell peppers, asparagus, broccoli, mushroom and tomatoes (I like to roast a lot of vegetables to serve with another meal and use leftovers for this dish).
  • Olive oil - I love to use a lemon infused version
  • Juice from one lime (or use lemon or vinegar if you prefer)
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • Sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • Top with avocado and and more lime if desired
  1. Cook quinoa according to package directions
  2. Saute kale in a dollop of olive oil until wilted and tender
  3. Slice vegetables into similar sized pieces into a large bowl.  Drizzle lightly with olive oil and place on  on a baking sheet.  Roast in a hot oven, 425°F (220°C) 10 minutes until tender-crisp.
  4. Combine quinoa, kale, cooked chicken and vegetables into a bowl.  Add olive oil, lime (or lemon or vinegar), and seasonings and gently mix to coat.
  5. Serve with diced avocado and lime juice.

Quinoa, Kale and Sweet Potatoes

I adapted this from a recipe in Men's Journal magazine, simplifying the preparation, and providing options.

Shown with optional chicken and crumbled bacon

Shown with optional chicken and crumbled bacon


• 1 cup (200 g) red quinoa
• 1 large sweet potato or yam
• Extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 cup (200 g) walnut halves
• Salt
• Cayenne pepper
• 1 small bunch lacinato kale
• Red wine vinegar or lemon juice
• Optional:  chopped cooked chicken,  bacon

• Rinse quinoa and cook according to instructions on package, being careful not to overcook.  

Sweet potato
• Chop the sweet potato into a 1/2-inch pieces. Toss with 1 tbsp olive oil and a pinch of salt. Place on a baking sheet and roast in a hot oven - 425°F (220°C) oven for about 10 minutes. Flip them and return to the oven for 10 - 15 minutes until browned and tender.  

• Place the walnuts on a baking sheet and bake in a 350°F (180°C) oven for 5 minutes, just until a bit glossy and crisp. (Set a timer: They burn easily.)

• Strip the stems and slice or tear leaves into pieces.
• Pour 1 tbsp olive oil into a large skillet, and cook over medium-high heat until kale is wilted and tender.

• Put the quinoa in a large bowl, add the sweet potato and kale.  Add vinegar or lemon juice and olive oil and blend well. Add salt and pepper to taste, along with a touch of cayenne pepper for a little zip!
• Top with walnuts, and top with crumbled bacon, if desired.