{Today’s Lunchbox} Reinventing Mac and Peas

by Valerie on March 24, 2011 · 14 comments

Today I am at the Gluten-Free Homemaker discussing tips on packing lunchboxes – do visit.  And if you are visiting from GFH, thank you for stopping by and welcome! There are over a 120 lunchboxes here (all gluten-free and dairy-free, many of them vegan) and my thoughts on food, mindful living, organization, work, and living with food allergies and a modified diet.

Today’s Lunchbox

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We are totally out of sweet potatoes and winter squashes, which is unusual for us this time of the week – so it was time to resort to quinoa.  I decided to use it as an excuse to reinvent Mac and Peas. I have seen recipes over at the Twins’ and on HEAB where they use nutritional yeast and grains or pseudograins to make cheezy type dishes reminiscent of mac and cheese – of course, when I thought of this, it was late at night, so I went with my inspiration rather than following an actual recipe.

Lunch and two snacks:

Sunday and Tuesday lunchboxes 010

Speaking of Wendy, did you see her awesome new blog venture with Mother Earth News?

And while we are on the topic of bloggers, do check out Sarah’s blog and her post on Reach out and Read.  Sarah’s post on ROAR inspired me to donate money – books were so important to me growing up, and this is my way of giving back a little of that feeling.

Recipe – Reinvented Mac and Peas

Sunday and Tuesday lunchboxes 016

Reinvented Mac and Peas (Gluten-Free, Vegan, Nut-Free, Soy-Free)

Inspired by Pure2Raw and HEAB 

(Makes 3-4 servings)

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 Tbsps lemon juice (about one lemon, juiced)
  • 1 tsp to 1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil (depending on how rich you would like this to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp Herbamare
  • 1/2 tsp mustard (I used Eden Yellow Organic Mustard – be sure to use a soy-free mustard if you would like this recipe to be soy-free)
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 3/4 cup frozen peas, thawed

Cook quinoa according to directions (I like using my rice cooker and use 1.5 cups of water for 1 cup quinoa).  Combine lemon juice through nutritional yeast in a large bowl.  When quinoa is ready, add to bowl and stir to combine.  Add peas and stir.

I am submitting this recipe to:

  • Seasonal Sunday, hosted by Real Sustenance.  The seasonal ingredient is peas!
  • Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, hosted by Amy of Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free
  • Gluten-Free Wednesday over at the Gluten-Free Homemaker

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  • Disclosures:

    • General Disclosures
    • Specific Disclosure regarding Laptop Lunchbox: I received this lunchbox container free of charge.  My view of this item is not influenced in any way by the fact I received this item free of charge

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    { 14 comments… read them below or add one }

    1 Faith March 24, 2011 at 3:15 pm

    I love the idea of anything with a creamy, cheesy flavor! What exactly is herbamare anyways?


    2 Heather McD (Heather Eats Almond Butter) March 24, 2011 at 3:19 pm

    Definitely my kind of lunchbox! I've never made beans from scratch in my rice cooker. Need to try that.


    3 Keelie Sheridan March 24, 2011 at 3:48 pm

    Yummm…. Sounds delicious!


    4 J3nn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) March 24, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    I love making cheezy quinoa and peas! I made it last month. So yummy! It tastes just like pasta to me.


    5 ELC March 24, 2011 at 5:14 pm

    I love, love the idea (and sound) of Mac and Peas!


    6 Johanna B March 24, 2011 at 8:17 pm

    I love quinoa. It's nice to have a new recipe featuring this "supergrain".


    7 Celeste Jean March 24, 2011 at 8:18 pm

    I just discovered your blog through Linda at the GFH, (who is awesome!) and I am really impressed with what I see here! I will be back.


    8 gfe--gluten free easily March 24, 2011 at 8:18 pm

    Valerie, you are the lunchbox queen! :-) I always put peas in macaroni and other pasta concoctions–love them, so adding them to peas works well for me, too. I am a serious fan of peas! Yay for smoothies, too. Mine was another weird mixture today, but tasted great. I had half first thing in the morning and then half on the way to work–yum.



    9 Pure2raw Twins March 24, 2011 at 10:39 pm

    Amazing looking lunchbox!!! YUM YUM Your mac and cheese recipe looks great, we will have to give it a try :) Love the addition of peas!!! It has been so long since we have had those.


    10 sarah (SHU) March 24, 2011 at 11:28 pm

    thank you for the shout-out :) and the mac 'n' peas looks great. i have some nutritional yeast lying around that i want to play with . . .perhaps i'll try it out!


    11 cv March 25, 2011 at 2:42 pm

    When you sub chia seeds for the flax seeds in Gena's juice pulp crackers, do you use the same amount of chia seeds as flax seeds? If not, what works for better for you? Thanks!


    12 Valerie @ City|Life|Eats March 25, 2011 at 3:57 pm

    @Faith – check out Friday's FAQs :)

    @Heather and @Twins – I totally got my inspiration from you.

    @Keelie, @J3nn, @ELC, @Johanna B – thank you for your kind comments. This was one tasty dish!

    @Shirley – thank you, you are too sweet. And yay on smoothies-to-go!

    Sarah – go for it!


    13 Valerie @ City|Life|Eats March 25, 2011 at 3:58 pm

    @cv – Gena's recipes uses ground flax – so I sub ground flax 1 to 1 with ground chia. Since I buy chia seeds, I kind of have to guess how much to grind though. Usually just over a 1/4 cup yields 1/2 cup of ground chia. Honestly, I find the recipe very forgiving. I have been known to not put in enough chia (ie closer to 1/3 cup than 1/2 cup) because I was rushing,and one time, I doubled the chia by mistake, and the crackers always turn out.


    14 withoutadornment March 29, 2011 at 9:35 pm

    I love that you made mac'n'cheese-esque quinoa. Now I've got to find me some nutritional yeast!


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