Quinoa-and-MushroomsCookbook author Candice Kumai defines her style of eating as semivegetarian—meaning she doesn’t eat meat but enjoys eggs, dairy, and honey. Whether you’re a semivegetarian or simply want to work some meatless dishes into your repertoire, you’ll enjoy her healthy and delicious recipes, and you’ll never miss the meat.

Spinach and Lemon Quinoa Cakes

Serves 4 to 6 as a small meal or appetizer

4 cups cooked quinoa
2 cups spinach, washed, patted dry, and roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon lemon zestSpinach-and-Lemon
Sea salt and pepper, to taste
2 cups panko breadcrumbs
4 eggs, beaten
Vegetable oil for frying


In a large bowl, mix the quinoa, spinach, garlic,and lemon zest. Taste and liberally season with salt and pepper. Add the panko and eggs; mix well to combine.

Form the quinoa mixture into 2-inch patties,about 1⁄2-inch thick. Heat a layer of olive oil in a large nonstick skillet. Drop patties into the oil and cook until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes on each side.Place on paper towels to drain before serving.

TD&N Nutrient Analysis: Calories: 411; Total Fat: 9 g; Saturated Fat: 2 g; Polyunsaturated Fat: 1 g; Monounsaturated Fat: 2 g; Cholesterol: 211 mg; Sodium: 142 mg; Carbohydrates: 66 g; Fiber: 6 g; Protein: 18 g


Mushroom Ragu Flatbreads
With Goat Cheese and Fresh HerbsMushroom-Raghu

Serves 4 as a meal or 8 as an appetizer

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups mushrooms (such as cremini, button, or oyster), chopped
Sea salt, to taste
1 cup dry red wine (such as Merlot)
1 cup vegetable stock
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped, plus more for topping
1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped, plus more for topping
1⁄4 cup Parmesan cheese
1 pound fresh pizza dough
4 ounces fresh goat cheese (chevre), sliced into medallions


Roasted-Red-PepperPreheat oven to 425°F.

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-low heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook until translucent, about 8 minutes. Increase the heat, add the mushrooms, and season with  salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms are tender and all the liquid has evaporated.sphagetti

Remove pan from heat and add wine. Return pan to the stove and allow wine to evaporate, about 3 minutes. Add vegetable stock and simmer for 30 minutes until the sauce has reduced by half. Take the pan off the heat and add fresh herbs and Parmesan; mix thoroughly.

Roll out the pizza dough and place on a large sheet tray. Bake at 425˚F for about 10 to 15 minutes until golden brown. Transfer flatbread to a large platter and spread with Mushroom Ragu. Top with goat cheese medallions and a sprinkle of herbs.

TD&N Nutrient Analysis (based on 8 servings): Calories: 270; Total Fat: 13 g; Saturated Fat: 4 g; Polyunsaturated Fat: 1 g; Monounsaturated Fat: 5 g; Cholesterol: 13 mg; Sodium: 387 mg; Carbohydrates: 29 g; Fiber: 1 g; Protein: 9 g

CANDICE KUMAI is a healthy lifestyle chef, author, and television host. She is the author of Pretty Delicious, the newest judge on Iron Chef America, co-host of the Lifetime TV series Cook Yourself Thin, chef contributor on the Cooking Channel’s Unique Eats, and a Top Chef alumna.