I found the inspiration for this recipe in my kitchen pantry after skimming a handful of “wrap” style recipes. My only requirement? It had to be healthy.
Wraps can be tricky. I read an article in Cooking Light recently about the use of larger tortillas (up to a 12″ tortilla) at popular chain burrito bars like Chipotle and Qdoba. A 12″ tortilla can triple the calories of a 6″ tortilla predominantly used for wrap-type sandwiches, which completely makes sense: more surface area, more toppings. A 12″ chicken, black bean, salsa and cheese burrito at Qdoba packed a whopping 840 calories. The same burrito at Chipotle was only marginally less caloric, coming in at 740 calories. Talk about a calorie black hole if portion control isn’t first and foremost on your mind when you order.
Now, I’m not a big fan of Mexican food, but I am a fan of food wrapped in things: pitas, lettuce, tortillas. Fortunately, lots of different styles of cooking are conducive to wraps. This one has more of a mediterranean flair with a combination of lemon, garlic, parsley and cucumber. Originally I thought I’d use some chicken tenders, but I had shrimp, which is lower in fat and calories, but still full of protein. To bind it all together I used quinoa, another high protein, high fiber grain that’s one of my favorite grains to use in lieu of rice. You could use couscous, too, if you don’t routinely keep quinoa on hand.
The final product was really savory, delicious, filling, and virtually guilt-free. Low cal, high fiber, high protein. Good for you and really satisfying. Enjoy!
- 1/2 cup quinoa, cooked according to package directions
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon salt, divided
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 pound large shrimp, peeled, deveined (about 12)
- 1 medium tomato, chopped
- 1/2 cup chopped cucumber
- 4 10-inch spinach or sun-dried tomato wraps or tortillas (I used La Tortilla Factory)
- Cook quinoa according to package directions. After cooking, fluff with a fork. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, combine parsley, lemon juice, oil, garlic, 1/8 teaspoon salt and pepper in a small bowl.
- Toss shrimp in a medium bowl with 1 tablespoon or so of the parsley mixture and the remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt. Place the shrimp in a nonstick skillet and cook over medium heat until cooked though, pink and tails beginning to curl. Transfer to a clean cutting board. Cut into bite-size pieces when cool enough to handle.
- Stir the remaining parsley mixture into the couscous along with tomato and cucumber.
- To assemble wraps, spread about 3/4 cup of the couscous mixture onto each wrap. Divide the shrimp among the wraps. Roll the wraps up like a burrito, tucking in the sides to hold the ingredients in. Serve cut in half.