Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) has risen to superstar fame in recent years. It’s a gluten-free, high-protein, high-fiber, quick-cooking whole grain with a nutty flavor and a fun pop between the teeth when cooked. You’ll find beige, red, black, or tricolor quinoa in stores; they all taste the same, so use whichever color you prefer. Because quinoa has a bitter-flavored natural coating, it’s always a good idea to rinse it before cooking. Quinoa is great for pilafs, salads, soups, casseroles, and more. Find 38 great recipes for cooking with this ancient grain here.
Want to make something a little special for dinner? Try these gorgeous stuffed squashes: They’re hearty and satisfying, and just beautiful on the plate. The recipe calls for golden nugget squash, but that variety can be hard to find year-round; acorn squash makes a good substitute. For a dinner party, double the recipe, and get a head start: The day before, cook the squash, and fill with stuffing. Bring to room temperature the next day, and bake as directed. You may find these filling enough to be your entire dinner, but they’re also great with a spinach salad tossed with apple or pear slices.