Do you do Meatless Mondays in your house? One day of the week, or even one meal, that is meat free? Apparently, if everyone did that, it would make a huge environmental impact. Also, if you don’t think of yourself as quite that selfless/committed to the environment/into vegetarian food, it is a fun way to mix up your dinner routine and challenge yourself to cook recipes that are a little bit outside of the norm.
And it doesn’t have to mean spending a huge amount of time preparing a fussy meal. This quinoa spaghetti dish is simple: You make it in one pot (not counting the roasted tomatoes, but you can make those ahead of time if you want to), and it comes together in about 30 minutes, give or take.
Don’t you love* a 30-minute weeknight dinner?
(*By love, of course, I mean feel intense relief that, at the end of a long day, dinner doesn’t take a lot of brainpower or energy, both of which are pretty much running on fumes?)
Plus, you need a bowl of pasta once in awhile. Don’t deny it: everyone does. You can use whatever kind of pasta you want here (zoodles, spaghetti squash, kelp noodles, arrowroot noodles, etc) but I used quinoa spaghetti in this version for several reasons, not least of all because it affords you a built-in source of protein, which quinoa is a wonderful source of. Plus the brand of quinoa spaghetti I prefer – from Now Foods – is gluten/dairy/nut/soy/corn/egg free, organic and non-GMO. So, though I don’t eat spaghetti often, I still like to eat the highest quality stuff I can find when I do.
If you prefer to use a grain-free noodle alternative like zucchini or spaghetti squash, adding tuna to this dish is a great way to add some (extra) protein to your dinner. As long as it’s not Monday, of course 😉 (Just kidding/no judgement).
- 2 cups grape tomatoes rinsed and dried
- 5 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil divided
- Generous pinch of course salt
- 8 ounces of quinoa spaghetti or replace with about 4 servings of your noodle of choice
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley optional, roughly chopped, plus more for garnish
- 2 Tablespoons raw or toasted pine nuts preferably unsalted
- 2 Tablespoons capers drained, brine discarded
- 1 Tablespoon lemon zest
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
Preheat the oven to 400F. Line a large baking pan with parchment paper or a nonstick pad and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, toss together the tomatoes and 1 Tablespoon of olive oil to coat, then add the salt and toss again to distribute. Transfer the tomatoes to the prepared baking pan and spread them into a single layer. Roast for 20 minutes or until shriveled. Remove from the oven and set aside.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook the quinoa spaghetti until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and return to the pot. Toss with remaining 4 Tablespoons (1/4 cup) olive oil. Add roasted tomatoes and remaining ingredients, and toss to combine.
Serve immediately, garnished with additional chopped fresh parsley if desired.
Yield: 3-4 servings, depending on how hungry you are
Thank you to Now Foods for providing the ingredients that inspired this delicious dish, including the quinoa spaghetti, pine nuts and olive oil.
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