Quick vegetarian taco salad AND protein is everywhere!

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Who says dinner has to cook forever to be hot and delicious?

Inspired by a friend’s Facebook status that she is currently eating at Juan’s Flying Burrito, I decided to go Mexican for the night. At Juan’s, there is one particularly delicious vegetarian taco with squash beans and corn, and since I had a summer squash in the fridge and a can of beans in the cabinet, there was just one thing to do: recreate, in salad form.  Now if only someone would bring me one of their margaritas to spice things up a little…

I digress.

Add 1/2 chopped onion to pan with cut up squash. Add whatever amounts of chili powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper, coriander, cumin, cayenne, and paprika suit your tastes. For me it’s heavy on the cumin and garlic, but you may be different. Add some beans (I used about 1/4 cup) and a little water to get it all mixing around together. Add a spoonful or two of salsa for tomatoey goodness and simmer until vegetables have reached desired consistency. Give it a little bit of time to get all those flavors together, but not enough that your stomach starts eating itself. Serve on shredded romaine, add extra salsa as dressing, plain Greek yogurt if you want, chopped avocado, cheese….topping possibilities are endless. Most importantly: enjoy!

Oftentimes people think that they will be hurt by skipping the meat in a meal and missing out on valuable protein. In reality, beans and legumes (like the black beans in this recipe) have plenty of protein to keep me healthy. Vegetables even have some, and grains have a considerable amount. My favorite breakfast food (oatmeal, duh) has 5 grams in a half cup serving even without anything added, which is quite a bit! To figure out how much protein you need a day, multiply your weight in kg by 0.8 <— I basically guarantee that this number is significantly LESS than the amount of protein you are eating right now, even if you excluded most of the meat in your diet.  Unless you are a freak and eat only fruit in which case you don’t know what you’re missin!

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