Power your family’s day with these protein-packed recipes from Brittany Mullins at Eating Bird Food.
Protein-Rich Quinoa Vegetable Soup
1 tablespoon avocado oil or olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
½ cup mixed mushrooms, chopped
1 cup quinoa, uncooked
1 large zucchini, chopped
1 cup peeled and chopped sweet potato
4 cups vegetable broth
2 cups water
1 28-oz can diced tomatoes
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons dried oregano
½ teaspoon dried marjoram
½ teaspoon dried thyme
½ teaspoon ground pepper
1 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste
2 cups de-stemmed and chopped kale
grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, for topping (omit if vegan)
Sauté oil over medium heat. Cook onion and garlic until onions are translucent and fragrant. Add in carrots, celery, and mushrooms and sauté for 5 to 10 minutes more.
Add sautéed veggies and all remaining ingredients, except the kale and zucchini, into the slow cooker. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6 to 8 hours, or until quinoa is fully cooked.
Add zucchini and kale about 30 minutes before soup is finished cooking.
Taste the soup before serving and season with additional salt and pepper if needed. Portion soup into bowls and top with cheese (if using).
Let soup cool completely and store in an airtight container in the fridge for 1 week or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Serves 6.
No-Bake Protein-Rich Energy Balls
1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
½ cup natural peanut butter
¼ cup honey
¼ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
¼ cup chocolate chips
2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of sea salt
Place all ingredients in a large bowl and stir together well to combine.
Place bowl of dough in the fridge for 30 minutes to an hour so it can set up.
Remove dough from the fridge and roll into balls, about 1 tablespoon in size.
Store in a covered container in the fridge or freezer. Makes 16.
Chicken Protein Bowl
1 ½ cups cooked quinoa, cooked according to package directions (½ cup dry quinoa)
3 skinless boneless chicken breasts, about 1 to 1¼ lb
2 ½ tablespoons + 1 teaspoon avocado or olive oil, divided
⅓ cup toasted almonds, sliced or chopped
1 lb Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved or quartered
1 large sweet potato, about 2 ½ cups, roasted
½ teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste
¼ teaspoon ground pepper, plus more to taste
1 bunch kale, washed and chopped
Sliced avocado, for topping, optional
Maple Dijon Dressing
1 lemon, juiced
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
½ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon ground pepper
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
Cook your quinoa according to the package directions and set aside.
Whisk lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, Dijon, garlic, salt, pepper, and oil until well combined.
Set aside 6 tablespoons of dressing. Use the rest to marinate the chicken in a shallow dish or 1-gallon sealable plastic bag. Toss to coat and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 12 hours.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add almonds to a baking sheet and place in oven to toast. Stir almonds after 5 minutes. Allow to toast about 5 minutes longer or until the almonds are golden and fragrant. Remove from oven and allow almonds to cool. Set aside.
Turn oven temperature up to 400 degrees. Combine sweet potatoes and sprouts in large bowl with 2 tablespoons oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, tossing halfway until fork-tender.
When vegetables are halfway done, start cooking chicken. Add 1/2 tablespoon oil to a cast iron skillet and turn heat on medium/medium-high heat. Remove chicken from the marinade, shake off excess, and discard leftover marinade. At this point your oil should be hot. Add chicken to the skillet and sear for 4-5 minutes on each side. Once both sides of chicken are seared, move skillet from the stovetop to the oven with the veggies and bake for 10 minutes or until chicken is tender and cooked throughout. You want the internal temp of the chicken to be 165 degrees. Let chicken cool for about 5 minutes.
Add 1 teaspoon oil to skillet and sauté chopped kale until wilted and tender, about 4-5 minutes. Sprinkle salt and pepper on if desired.
To make the protein bowls, add 1/2 cup quinoa, kale, and roasted veggies to three bowls. Top with 1 piece of chicken and 2 tablespoons toasted almonds. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of remaining dressing and top with sliced avocado, if desired. Serves 3.
Protein-Rich Baked Egg Muffins
6 large eggs
1 cup egg whites, or another 6 eggs
½ teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon ground pepper
1 teaspoon olive oil
½ orange bell pepper, chopped
½ cup yellow onion, chopped
1 cup broccoli, chopped into small pieces
1 cup mushrooms, sliced
1/3 cup crumbled feta
2 tablespoons fresh parsley
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Spray twelve-cup muffin tin with cooking spray or line with silicone baking cups. I spray the silicone baking cups with spray, just to be safe.
Place eggs and egg whites into a large bowl and whisk to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, heat a skillet over medium heat with 1 teaspoon oil. Add in chopped veggies (bell pepper, onion, broccoli, and mushrooms) and cook for about 5 to 6 minutes, until they’re a little soft and the onions are fragrant.
Add sautéed veggies into the bowl with the whisked eggs. Add in feta and parsley and mix well.
Use 1/3 cup measuring cup to pour egg mixture into muffin cups evenly. Bake for 17 to 20 minutes, or until the egg cups are no longer jiggly and an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Allow cups to cool and enjoy immediately. Makes 12.