Beans, Greens, and Grains with Balsamic Vinaigrette

Do you eat your beans, greens, and grains?

According to the USDA they are the three most underconsumed foods in the United States, but eaten together they are a powerhouse of a one-pot meal containing all your needed fiber, protein, vitamins, and carbohydrates to keep you feeling energized and strong. Tepary beans, wheat berries, and kale are all grown right here in Arizona. You can switch those out for your favorite beans, greens, and grains in this recipe.

 

lentilsBeans

Beans, or pulses, can include anything from black beans and cranberry beans to lentils and chickpeas. Beans are high in fiber and protein, but unlike animal protein contain no cholesterol. They are much more inexpensive to boot! When you plan ahead to soak and cook your dried beans you have access to a greater variety of organic beans and pulses. Next time you're at the grocery store, check out the bulk section! You can find a step-by-step guide to cooking beans on the stove or in a slow-cooker here.

 

kalesGreens

There are so many types of leafy greens to choose from this time of year. All of them are rich in vitamins, high in fiber, and low in fat.  It's important to thoroughly wash and dry your greens, then remove the thick stems. Shredded very thin and dressed with a nice vinaigrette, you can appreciate the delicate flavors of all types of greens. The recipe below is great with kale or spinach, swiss chard, dandelion greens, or even cabbage.

 

Grains

Whole grains are a necessary and important part of a healthy and balanced diet. They help your body regulate blood sugar and insulin and provide the necessary carbohydrates your body needs for energy and brain functionality. Whole grains can include brown rice, barley, rye berries, whole wheat berries, or quinoa. To learn about a range of different kind of grains and what to do with them, visit this site.

 

Beans, Greens, and Grains with Balsamic Vinaigrette

 

Ingredients

 

Salad

1 c cooked tepary beans

1 c cooked wheat berries

1 bunch kale, shredded

½ c carrots, shredded

½ c apples, chopped and tossed in lemon juice

¼ cup pecans, toasted and chopped

¼ cup dates, pitted and chopped

 

Dressing

¼ c olive oil

2 tbs white balsamic vinegar

1 tbs shallot, minced

Salt and pepper

 

Directions

 

Place salad ingredients in a large bowl. Shake dressing ingredients in a jar with a tight fitting lid until emulsified. Toss salad with dressing until combined. Refrigerate for up to one hour before serving. Enjoy!