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From The USANA Test Kitchen: Happy Thanksgiving

With Thanksgiving, the  holiday season begins. That means lots of parties, more hectic schedules, and lots of fun. Oh, and did I mention all of the great food?! Yes, food.

For many of us, the holidays are a time of year for traditional meals and treats. Moderation is the key, of course, so that you enjoy the holiday season without feeling too much regret afterwards.

Instead of sharing a sweet treat with you today (it was too hard to pick one), I have decided to share a more savory one: Quinoa Stuffing.

Since I discovered quinoa last year, I have been making it non-stop to use in both sweet and savory dishes. I have even been using quinoa flour when baking. Quinoa is a complete protein, gluten-free, and is as easy to cook as rice.

I chose this recipe for a few reasons.

  • First, it is a good alternative to traditional stuffing, especially on a day that is filled with carbohydrates.
  • Second, having a vegetarian stuffing recipe that includes protein is a good option.
  • Third, the recipe is incredibly versatile (see Options after the recipe).
  • Another benefit: it is made entirely on the stove top, so you will not have to compete for oven space on Thanksgiving Day.
Quinoa Stuffing

Quinoa Stuffing

Quinoa Stuffing*


2 tbsp butter or olive oil
1 cup diced onion
1 cup diced celery
2 cups chopped cremini or button mushrooms (double the original recipe because I love mushrooms)
3/4 cup quinoa
2 cups vegetable broth (reduce to 1 1/2 cups if using only 1 cup of mushrooms; add more if quinoa dries out)
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp marjoram
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 sage
1 1/2 tsp Fibergy Plus
Salt and pepper to taste


  • Melt the butter/heat olive oil, and sauté the onion, celery, and mushrooms until softened; about 5-7 minutes.
  • Add the quinoa, broth, bay leaf, spices, and Fibergy Plus. Cover, reduce to a simmer, and cook for about 15 minutes.
  • Turn off the heat. Leave the pan, covered, on the burner for 8-10 additional minutes, or until quinoa is soft.
  • Remove the bay leaf. Add salt and pepper to taste.

You Have Options

This dish almost asks you to have fun and be creative. When I had some for lunch, I added some chopped walnuts. Delicious. You could make it even heartier by using chicken stock and adding sausage or bacon. Want to add something a bit sweet? Raisins or dried cranberries would be good, too.

I am so glad I tried this recipe. I will definitely be making it during the holidays, and beyond. I hope you try it and enjoy it.

How About You?

Now it is your turn: what is your favorite Thanksgiving or holiday recipe?

*Recipe adapted from Quinoa 365, by Patricia Green & Carolyn Hemming.

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