Mole-Spiced Beef & Red Quinoa Bowls with Avocado & Lime Crema

Mole-Spiced Beef & Red Quinoa Bowls

with Avocado & Lime Crema

50 MIN
4 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

These Tex-Mex beef and quinoa bowls get a flavorful lift from two special ingredients. We’re seasoning the beef with a warming spice blend inspired by mole—a regional Mexican sauce that typically uses dried chiles, cocoa, seeds, and more—as well as earthy ancho chile paste, made from dried poblano peppers. For exciting texture, we’re topping it all off with crunchy oven-toasted tortilla strips and creamy avocado, along with cooling dollops of lime-seasoned crema.

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  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    690 Cals (est.)
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Mole-Spiced Beef & Red Quinoa Bowls with Avocado & Lime Crema
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tips & techniques
Cook the quinoa:
1 Cook the quinoa:

Preheat the oven to 475°F. Heat a medium pot of salted water to boiling on high. Thoroughly rinse the quinoa under cold water. Once boiling, add the rinsed quinoa to the pot and cook, uncovered, 16 to 18 minutes, or until tender. Drain thoroughly and return to the pot. Set aside in a warm place.

Prepare the ingredients & make the lime crema:
2 Prepare the ingredients & make the lime crema:

While the quinoa cooks, wash and dry the fresh produce. Cut off and discard the ends of the radishes; halve lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise. Stack the tortillas; cut in half, then cut into ¼-inch-wide strips. Cut off and discard the root end of the lettuce; thinly slice crosswise. Roughly chop the cilantro leaves and stems. Using a peeler, remove the green rind of the lime, avoiding the white pith; mince the rind to get 2 teaspoons of zest (or use a zester). Quarter the lime. Pit, peel, and medium dice the avocado. Place in a bowl and top with the juice of 1 lime wedge to prevent browning. Season with salt and pepper. In a bowl, combine the crema and the juice of 1 lime wedge; whisk until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Marinate the radishes:
3 Marinate the radishes:

In a bowl, combine the radishes and the juice of 1 lime wedge; drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Set aside to marinate, stirring occasionally, for at least 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Cook the beef:
4 Cook the beef:

While the radishes marinate, in a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the ground beef; season with salt and pepper. Cook, frequently breaking the meat apart with a spoon, 3 to 5 minutes, or until browned. Add the spice blend and as much of the chile paste as you'd like, depending on how spicy you'd like the dish to be. Cook, stirring frequently, 2 to 3 minutes, or until the beef is cooked through. Turn off the heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Toast the tortilla strips:
5 Toast the tortilla strips:

While the beef cooks, place the tortilla strips on a sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper; toss to thoroughly coat. Arrange in a single, even layer and toast in the oven 5 to 7 minutes, or until lightly browned and crispy. Remove from the oven.

Finish & serve your dish:
6 Finish & serve your dish:

While the tortilla strips toast, to the pot of cooked quinoa, add the lime zest and radish marinating liquid (reserving the radishes); stir to thoroughly combine. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. In a large bowl, combine the lettuce and the juice of the remaining lime wedge; drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Toss to thoroughly combine. Divide the finished quinoa among 4 dishes. Top with the cooked beef, dressed lettuce, seasoned avocado, and marinated radishes. Garnish with the tortilla strips, lime crema, and cilantro. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

1 Cook the quinoa:

Preheat the oven to 475°F. Heat a medium pot of salted water to boiling on high. Thoroughly rinse the quinoa under cold water. Once boiling, add the rinsed quinoa to the pot and cook, uncovered, 16 to 18 minutes, or until tender. Drain thoroughly and return to the pot. Set aside in a warm place.

2 Prepare the ingredients & make the lime crema:

While the quinoa cooks, wash and dry the fresh produce. Cut off and discard the ends of the radishes; halve lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise. Stack the tortillas; cut in half, then cut into ¼-inch-wide strips. Cut off and discard the root end of the lettuce; thinly slice crosswise. Roughly chop the cilantro leaves and stems. Using a peeler, remove the green rind of the lime, avoiding the white pith; mince the rind to get 2 teaspoons of zest (or use a zester). Quarter the lime. Pit, peel, and medium dice the avocado. Place in a bowl and top with the juice of 1 lime wedge to prevent browning. Season with salt and pepper. In a bowl, combine the crema and the juice of 1 lime wedge; whisk until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Marinate the radishes:
3 Marinate the radishes:

In a bowl, combine the radishes and the juice of 1 lime wedge; drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Set aside to marinate, stirring occasionally, for at least 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

4 Cook the beef:

While the radishes marinate, in a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the ground beef; season with salt and pepper. Cook, frequently breaking the meat apart with a spoon, 3 to 5 minutes, or until browned. Add the spice blend and as much of the chile paste as you'd like, depending on how spicy you'd like the dish to be. Cook, stirring frequently, 2 to 3 minutes, or until the beef is cooked through. Turn off the heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Cook the beef:
Toast the tortilla strips:
5 Toast the tortilla strips:

While the beef cooks, place the tortilla strips on a sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper; toss to thoroughly coat. Arrange in a single, even layer and toast in the oven 5 to 7 minutes, or until lightly browned and crispy. Remove from the oven.

6 Finish & serve your dish:

While the tortilla strips toast, to the pot of cooked quinoa, add the lime zest and radish marinating liquid (reserving the radishes); stir to thoroughly combine. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. In a large bowl, combine the lettuce and the juice of the remaining lime wedge; drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Toss to thoroughly combine. Divide the finished quinoa among 4 dishes. Top with the cooked beef, dressed lettuce, seasoned avocado, and marinated radishes. Garnish with the tortilla strips, lime crema, and cilantro. Enjoy!

Finish & serve your dish:
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