Cranberry and parsnip quinoa medley (vegan, gluten-free)

What do you get when you cross a permanently preheated oven, an overused jar of cinnamon, and every root vegetable imaginable? Answer: November in the Veg World kitchen! With foliage at its peak, and my consumption of apples at an all-time high, it’s one of my favorite times to experiment in the kitchen. And after an eventful two weeks of midterms, a new job, and Halloween craziness, I’m thrilled to get back on track and share my first recipe of the month with all of you today.

Based on a few of my previous posts, you probably know that I have a minor obsession with parsnips, but today’s other featured ingredient is a new addition to my culinary toolbox. Fresh cranberries have a level of sweetness that put their dried counterparts to shame, and because of that, add an amazing boost of flavor to basic recipes. Today’s concoction relies on this delightful tanginess to deliver a tasty and nutritious dish for all your holiday meal needs!

Cranberry and Parsnip Quinoa Medley (Vegan, Gluten-free)
It’s never too early to think about your Thanksgiving dinner menu. Consider this for a seasonal side dish! IMG_0977

Extra-virgin olive oil
3 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into 1/4 inch pieces
1/2 red onion, diced
1 cup chickpeas, rinsed
1 cup fresh cranberries
2 cups cooked quinoa
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Parsley for garnish

In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add parsnips and saute until slightly brown and tender (about 10 minutes). Add red onion, chickpeas, and cranberries. Cook for another 5-10 minutes, stirring constantly. The skin of the cranberries should blister. Add quinoa, stir, then add seasonings. Remove from heat, garnish with parsley, and serve immediately!

Have any of you cooked with fresh cranberries before? I’d love to hear what you make with them!

Have a happy and healthy week!