Roasted Root Vegetable Quinoa Pilaf

My obsession with all things roasted vegetables has gotten completely out of hand.

I suppose that going without an oven for close to seven weeks will do that to a person??? At least that’s what I’m telling myself. I mean, it’s totally normally to make up for lost time by having them pretty much every night, right? Wait, don’t answer that.

Healthy, flavorful and colorful roasted root vegetable quinoa pilaf! Perfect for Thanksgiving - the whole dish can be made in advance!

So, it should come as no surprise that today’s idea for a healthier Thanksgiving side dish features none other than my fav … roasted veggies! Roasted root veggies to be exact.

Well, sorta. The carrots and parsnips are root vegetables … andddd I just so happen to love brussels sprouts. So we’re throwing some of those in there as well. Cool? Yes!

Then! We combine it with another favorite of mine – pilaf! But with quinoa. We’re getting saucy all up in here! You know, because it’s usually made with rice? Oy – lame joke central here today. I’m sorry? But not really.

Now, just alone the quinoa pilaf is pretty darn awesome and packed with flavor. But when we toss it together with those maple roasted vegetables?

It’s healthy side dish heaven. Roasted root vegetable quinoa pilaf for the win!

Healthy, flavorful and colorful roasted root vegetable quinoa pilaf! Perfect for Thanksgiving - the whole dish can be made in advance!

Like always, let’s chat some tips & tricks for the recipe.

  1. The key to the roasted veggies is to cut them all to approximately the same size. Use your judgment! This way they roast evenly and will all be finished cooking at the same time. For example, brussels sprouts can be a variety of sizes even within one bag – so quarter if you need to (or leave whole, etc.).
  2. Making this dish for turkey day? The whole thing can be made in advance! Just store in an airtight container in the fridge and reheat when needed. Awesome.
  3. So, we are clearly in the midst of thanksgiving recipe season, but this dish is fantastic just for a regular meal. It even works as a main dish – I can say from experience that it’s most excellent when topped with a fried, runny egg. Swoon swoon.

It’s pretty pilaf perfection! Now how’s that for some alliteration this Monday morning!

Healthy, flavorful and colorful roasted root vegetable quinoa pilaf! Perfect for Thanksgiving - the whole dish can be made in advance!

Looking for more Thanksgiving recipe ideas!? Be sure to check out the turkey day archives for loads of fun dishes! Find em’ here! —> Thanksgiving Recipes

Yield: about 6 servings, as a side

Roasted Root Vegetable Quinoa Pilaf

Prep Time:20 minutes

Cook Time:25 minutes

Total Time:45 minutes

Healthy, flavorful and colorful roasted root vegetable quinoa pilaf! Perfect for Thanksgiving – the whole dish can be made in advance!

Ingredients:

For the veggies
:

  • 1 small red onion, sliced
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1 ½ to 2-inch sticks
  • 2 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into 1 ½ to 2-inch sticks
  • ½ pound brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved (quartered if large)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper

For the quinoa:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ⅓ cup raw pecans, chopped
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
  • 2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • minced chives, for garnish (optional)

Directions:

For the veggies:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF.
  2. Add the onion, carrots, parsnip and brussels sprouts to a large rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with the olive oil and maple syrup, then sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Toss to combine and spread in an even layer. Bake for about 25 to 30 minutes, stirring once halfway through, until tender and starting to brown. Remove from the oven and let cool for about 5 minutes.

For the quinoa:

  1. Meanwhile, set a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add in the olive oil. When hot, add in the garlic and pecans and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until toasted and fragrant. Add in the quinoa, broth and salt. Bring the mixture to a boil, then cover, reduce the heat and let simmer for about 15 minutes, until the broth is absorbed. Turn off the heat and let sit covered for 5 minutes, then fluff the quinoa with a fork.
  2. Add the quinoa to a bowl, along with the roasted veggies. Toss to combine. Season with additional salt / pepper as needed. Garnish with the chives and serve!

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