Product: Urbāne Grain Three Cheese and Mushroom Whole Grain Quinoa Blend – $4.99
Quinoa. I love quinoa. I cook with it often. And I have used it as a hot cereal in the morning as well as a side…and even baked it in casseroles. I’ve also supplemented it for rice-based meals, as quinoa has a much better nutrition profile than rice.
Even better…it tastes great.
One day, while hitting up the (seriously) nine grocery stores I shop at every week, my roommate decided to splurge a little and had me pick out one of the new products we hadn’t seen elsewhere before. I noticed some black pouches on a shelf with clearly labeled “gluten-free” markings on them. They were quinoa dishes, that were also touted to be all natural and restaurant quality. Since I am a quinoa whore…I desperately wanted to try one of the variety of flavors. So, I pointed to them and my roommate told me to pick a flavor. As I am less picky than her I told her to pick the one that sounded best to her.
Urbāne Grain Three Cheese and Mushroom Whole Grain Quinoa Blend.
Sounds good, yes?
I thought so. So…we brought it home with us. And promptly let it sit in the pantry for a few months. D’oh! But…even though a bin was received today, I already had it in my mind that this quinoa meal was going to be our dinner tonight. And so…it was.
Now, I had physical therapy on my ankle right after work, so this put us home much later than normal. I didn’t take that into account this morning when I noticed the 20-25 minute cooking time on the stove and in the microwave. Ah well. I figured I could pair it with a nutritious kale salad with some fresh veggies and that would help get us through the cooking time.
So, as instructed by the package, I immediately filled a pan with 1-1/2 cups of water, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, then added the contents of the pouch. I gave it a stir and set it on medium-high heat, letting it come up to a boil. Once there, I covered it, took the heat down to low and let it simmer for about 25 minutes. The entire time it was cooking, and the couple of times I lifted the lid to give it a stir, the dish itself smelled fantastic.
Like…macaroni and cheese.
I’m okay with that.
Anyway, after it cooked and the liquid was mostly gone, I removed it from the heat and let it sit, still covered, for five minutes. After that, I gave it a quick fork fluffing and dished it up. Dinner…was finally served.
And my, oh, my…this was one crazy indulgent dinner. First of all…hello quinoa. I love you. Pair that with a blend of organic millet and brown rice and you’re talking a filling little bowl of goodness. The cheeses..Romano, Cheddar, and a 12 month anged Parmesan. Amazing. It smelled as good as it tasted. And that texture was rich and creamy, with a little bit of that rice-chewy texture that is just what you need so everything isn’t just one strange texture. It was awesome. The dehydrated mushrooms softened up beautiful. And my cheese-loving roommate devoured it as quickly as I did. Really amazing. I thought it was one of the better packaged items that involved quinoa that we have picked up to date. YUM-A-LICIOUS!
Ingredient-wise…it doesn’t get much simpler than this. The Urbāne Grain Three Cheese and Mushroom Whole Grain Quinoa Blend contains parboiled brown rice, quinoa, millet, Cheddar cheese, Parmesan cheese, and Romano cheese, dehydrated mushrooms, sea salt, and dried herbs. Simple ingredients make the best meals. Even when they come in a package.
Nutritionally speaking, a serving of Urbāne Grain Three Cheese and Mushroom Whole Grain Quinoa Blend is 1/3 cup of the dry mix. There are 2.5 servings per package, which makes about 2 cups when completely cooked. A serving will provide you with 180 calories and 2.5 grams of fat. You will also be consuming 550 mg sodium, and only 1 gram of sugar. Nice! A serving also will dish you up 3 grams of fiber and 6 grams of protein, so you will feel full when you eat this. Trust me. This mix is gluten-free and cholesterol free.
I fell in love with this package of awesome quinoa goodness. The flavors were amazing. It cooked up beautifully. It was indulgent and rich and…just really amazing. I can’t say enough good things about it. They aren’t kidding when they say it is restaurant quality. I can’t wait to try the other 8 flavors out there.