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Spinach, Mushroom, and Leek Quinoa Skillet

If you crave something that’s wholesome, delicious, yet full of anticancer properties… then you’ll love today’s recipe for our delicious spinach, mushroom, and leek quinoa skillet. 

spinach, mushroom, and leek quinoa skillet with oil, garlic, tomatoes and seasoning surrounding it

The Anticancer360 approach doesn’t rely on one anticancer diet. Depending on the case and situation we can choose one of five different diets. Today we are bringing you a wholesome and delicious recipe that is quick and easy. This recipe can be part of a plant-based diet and it’s full of ingredients that have high anticancer potential. 

Recipes like this are great because you won’t spend hours in the kitchen. And it’s incredible how simple ingredients bind together and create something so flavorful.

According to the latest report on diet and cancer, released by the American Institute for Cancer Research, eating plant-based diet is associated with reduced cancer risk [1]. This is due to plant-based foods, such as fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, and whole grains, which are packed with natural anticancer substances [1]. 

Various ingredients for the recipe

Here are some of the great anticancer ingredients that you will find in our appetizing and satisfying Spinach, Mushroom, and Leek Quinoa Skillet. 

  • Onions: Tested high in anticancer potential, especially the chartreuse onion because of its high content of quercetin. Quercetin is a powerful antioxidant that shows potential in blocking cancer metabolism pathways and for preventing the spread of various cancers [1]. Another study also identified green onion as having a very high chemopreventive material [2].  
  • Garlic: Allicin is a naturally occurring anticancer substance in garlic. Studies have shown that the consumption of garlic in the diet provides strong protection against cancer. Other studies have also shown its remarkable suppression of the proliferation of cultured cancer cells [1]. In this specific study, the extract from garlic was by far the strongest inhibitor of tumor cell proliferation among other vegetables, with complete growth inhibition of all tested cell lines [4]. To maximize allicin and its anticancer effect, you can crush the garlic and let it sit for 10 minutes before eating. 
  • Leek: Presents a rich source of antioxidants, especially polyphenols and sulfur compounds [1]. These special compounds, protect us from environmental and ingested carcinogens by equipping our antioxidant enzymes, enhancing DNA repair pathways, and having a direct effect on the fundamental identifiers of cancer progression and metastasis [1].
  • Spinach: The natural substances found in spinach, can prevent macromolecular oxidative damage, modulate the expression and activity of genes involved in metabolism, proliferation, inflammation, and antioxidant defense. It can also reduce food intake by inducing the secretion of satiety hormones. All these biological activities contribute to the anti-cancer, anti-obesity, hypoglycemic, and hypolipidemic properties of spinach [2].
  • Quinoa:. Both quercetin and kaempferol compounds are also found in quinoa in high amounts [3]. These important molecules have been shown to have anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-cancer, and anti-depressant effects [4]. Quinoa is also gluten-free, tasty, easy to prepare, and goes well with many foods.
  • Mushroom: May be able to help hormone-sensitive cancers like breast cancer for example by blocking hormone-related enzymes. In breast tissue, an abnormal expression of aromatase is considered to be a risk factor for breast cancer. Mushrooms have phytochemicals that can suppress aromatase/estrogen biosynthesis. One study stated that of their seven vegetable extracts tested, the mushroom’s extract was the most effective in inhibiting the activity of human placental aromatase activity thus helping greatly in the prevention and proliferation of cancer [4]. 

When making skillets, people usually use only diced onion for the flavor. But we have decided to go one step further and to add diced leek followed by the onion and garlic to create a wonderful flavor base for this recipe. This can also increase the anticancer potential of this meal.

quinoa, tomatoes, seasoning in skillet, cooking.

In recipes like this, it’s essential not to warm the garlic so much, so try not to heat the garlic for more than a minute or two. This will help you get all the health benefits from the garlic. You can also use jarred tomatoes for this recipe instead of canned tomatoes which can be high in BPA. But the best way is to go with freshly diced tomatoes to get the full vitamins and full flavor. 

What you will love about this recipe is that it’s ready in almost no time. Basically, you dice up the ingredients, through them in the skillet, mix the broth with everything together. When it comes to a boiling point, all you need to do is turn off the heat and to cover with a lid so the quinoa will absorb all of the aromatic liquids. 

The most beneficial anticancer ingredients here are garlic, mushrooms, leeks, and spinach, even though quinoa is quite healthful too. 

finished recipe on plate setting

Make sure to give this delicious recipe a try, it is full of anti-cancer nutrients and is very tasty and satisfying. If you can get all the ingredients organic, that’s ideal. But, if not… You should get ingredients like spinach in organic form since it’s known to be especially high in toxins if bought in the conventional form [5].

Spinach, Mushroom, and Leek Quinoa Skillet

Total Time 40 mins
Cuisine Compatible with: Plant Based Diet, Slow Carb Diet, Whole Foods Diet
Servings 4 people
Calories 241 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • 1/2 head onion finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic finely diced
  • 1/2 cup leek diced
  • 4 oz mushrooms finely diced
  • 1 red chili pepper, sweet or hot diced into small cubes
  • 1 cup quinoa washed and rinsed well
  • 1 tsp oregano dried
  • 1/2 tsp himalayan salt
  • black pepper to taste
  • 2 tomatoes, medium diced into small cubes
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth low sodium
  • 1 cup spinach roughly chopped (or use baby spinach instead)
  • 3/4 cup cannelloni beans
  • parsley freshly chopped

Instructions
 

  • In a large skillet or frying pan, warm the olive oil on medium heat.
  • Stir in the diced onions, leeks, garlic cloves, mushrooms, and pepper.
  • Cook for only 2 minutes, and then stir in the well-rinsed quinoa, spinach, and cannellini beans.
  • Stir in the diced tomatoes and season with salt and pepper and dried oregano.
  • Finally, stir everything together and pour in the low sodium vegetable broth.
  • When everything is boiling, turn off the stove and cover it with a lid. 
  • Let it simmer for about 20 minutes, and then you can enjoy it. 
  • Just right before serving, sprinkle some freshly chopped parsley. 

Nutrition

Calories: 241kcalCarbohydrates: 32gProtein: 7gFat: 10gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 655mgPotassium: 404mgFiber: 4gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 1091IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 46mgIron: 3mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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