Category: Main Course

Spinach & Barley Risotto Main

Spinach & Barley Risotto

Here’s a risotto recipe with a bit more nutritional bang to it. Instead of Arborio, I use pearl barley which is packed with more vitamins and fiber. It is still creamy AF and hella tasty. Healthy risotto for the win.


4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
1 cup pearl barley
1 cup mirepoix
1 garlic clove, minced
½ cup dry white wine
4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
6 ounces baby spinach


In a large saute pan, melt half of the butter over a medium-low heat. Add the barley and toast it in the butter for about 5 minutes, careful not to burn. It will darken in color and the butter and grain will put off a nutty aroma.

Transfer the toasted barley to a separate dish.

Melt the remaining butter and add the mirepoix. Mirepoix is two parts onion, one part carrot, and one part celery, all evenly chopped. Saute for about five minutes, until the onions sweat and soften.

Add the minced garlic and cook for another minute.

Add the toasted barley back to the pan along with the white wine and 1 cup of broth. Bring to a low simmer over a medium heat and cook for about 10 minutes, until the barley absorbs most of the liquid. It’s important to keep this at a low simmer as to not cook off the liquid too fast.

Repeat the above step, adding ½ cup of broth at a time, bringing to a low simmer, until all broth has been added and absorbed by the barley. It’s okay if the mixture is liquidy as long as the barley is fully cooked. It should be tender. This will take about 45 minutes.

Add the Parmesan cheese and fold it into the mixture.

Turn off the heat and add in the spinach. Fold in the spinach and let the heat from risotto wilt it.

Top with more Parm and serve.

Spinach & Barley Risotto Main

Easy Butternut & Chickpea Chana Masala Main

Easy Butternut & Chickpea Chana Masala

Indian food lovers, you have to try this easy chana masala recipe with a fun fall twist, featuring sweet butternut squash.


3 tablespoons olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup mirepoix
1 (28 ounce) can chopped tomatoes
¼ cup vegetable broth
1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, drained & rinsed
1 ½ cups butternut squash, medium chop
1 ½ tablespoons garam masala
2 teaspoons curry powder
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon sea salt
teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ cup chopped cilantro


In a shallow dutch oven, warm 3 tablespoon of olive oil over medium-low heat. Add in the mirepoix, and saute until onions just begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add in the minced garlic and cook for another minute.

How to Bloom Spices: Add the spices in batches so as to not overwhelm the oil. After adding each spice, cook it for about 30 seconds, adding more oil if needed. Then rinse and repeat. During this time the spices will become extremely aromatic. Do not let them burn!

NOTE: Many spices and some herbs are largely fat-soluble. This means you will get more flavor from them by steeping them in oil than liquid. Literally up to 10x more flavor! But frying them in oil means you can also easily burn them. This process also makes for a much more even flavor.

Add the can of chopped tomatoes and the vegetable broth and bring to a low simmer. You can add up to 1/2 cup vegetable broth for a saucier dish.

Add in the cubed butternut squash and return to a simmer. Cook for 5 minutes. Add in the chickpeas and cook for another 5 minutes. Let simmer until squash reaches desired tenderness. Add salt and pepper.

Turn off the heat and mix in half of the cilantro. Top off with remaining cilantro, cover, and serve.

This dish is great the next day after all the flavors have the chance to meld. Serve over rice. Basmati if you wanna go traditional but I love brown rice or quinoa.


Easy Butternut & Chickpea Chana Masala Main


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