Before I get ahead of myself, let me just say that being gluten-free in a healthy way doesn't mean you go out and buy all of the boxed gluten-free products available (and there are quite a few). The best way to be gluten-free is to substitute your old gluten products with fresh fruits, vegetables, and protein. I know, I know... that can sound impossible or even undesirable if you're used to eating lots of starchy foods. But once you actually eat like this for a few weeks, consuming that other stuff doesn't sound so appealing anymore. For those of you thinking I'm just saying that in order to convince myself that eating a diet high in plants and low in processed foods tastes good, I'm totally telling the truth!
But nonetheless, there are days I still want a plate of pasta. And it's okay -- I don't eat it everyday and I don't eat it at every meal. So a plate here and there is not a bad thing at all. In fact, it's still tasty and still healthy!
This next recipe is great for a busy weeknight meal. It takes minimal preparation and the skillet does most of the work for you.
Southwest Skillet Supper
1 lb ground beef or pork
1 small onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
28 oz diced tomatoes, drained
8 oz tomato sauce
2 1/2 cups water
1 TBSP Chili powder
1/2 tsp marjoram
1/2 tsp cumin
2 tsp sea salt
1 1/2 cups gluten-free macaroni or shell pasta
1 cup frozen corn
15 oz pinto or black beans, drained and rinsed
Optional Garnish Ideas:
cheddar or monterey jack cheese
1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add ground beef or pork, breaking up large clumps and cook until almost done. Add minced onion and continue to stir and cook until meat is no longer pink and onion is tender. Add garlic and cook 1 minute longer.
2. Pour in tomatoes, tomato sauce and water into skillet. Add chili powder, marjoram, cumin, sea salt and pasta to the skillet: stir to combine. Bring skillet to a low boil, reduce heat to low and cover. Cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until pasta is tender.
3. Remove lid and add corn and beans. Stir until corn and beans are heated through, about 2 minutes. Serve alone or with optional garnishes.
**If you're not gluten-free but still want to enjoy this dish, regular pasta cooks up just the same