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Home Meals Kid-approved Tropical Quinoa & Cod Burrito

Tropical Quinoa & Cod Burrito

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There are certain meals that just can’t lose when it comes to lunch or dinner time.  And a burrito is one of them!

But this is not just an ordinary burrito. It was originally made by an 8-year old as part of the White House Kids’ State Dinner.

The Kids’ State Dinner is an annual event that the First Lady started at the White House four years ago (in 2012). It is just like any other state dinner, complete with beautiful décor and White House china, except the guests of honor are kids.  In order to claim their spot at the White House for this fun event, 8-12 year old kids submit an original recipe that is healthy, affordable, and delicious, and a winning recipe is selected from each state and U.S. territory.

When I met with First Lady Michelle Obama a few months back at a Fruits ‘N Veggies Live Event, she challenged me to recreate one of the recipes-  using mango and pineapple – with a FitMenCook twist!

First Lady Michelle Obama, as part of the "Let's Move!" initiative, poses with Kevin Curry for Curry's FitMen Cook site, prior to a Partnership for a Healthier America FNV Live! event at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, Nov. 20, 2015.  (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

Challenge accepted, First Lady!

So, here is my take on these Fabulous Tropical tacos, created by an 8 year old from Nebraska.


Ingredients for salsa (makes about 6 servings):

  • 1/3 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 1/3 cup diced yellow bell pepper
  • 1/2 jalapeño (chopped)
  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 large avocado (diced)
  • 1/3 cup diced mango
  • 1/3 cup diced pineapple
  • 1/2 tablespoon garlic (paste or minced)
  • juice from 1 orange


Ingredients for quinoa-cod mixture (makes 3 large burritos or 6 smaller burritos):

  • 1 lb fresh cod (or you can add an extra 1/2 lb to boost the protein content)
  • 1 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/3 cup chopped green onion
  • spray olive oil
  • Seasonings:
    • 1 teaspoon cumin
    • 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
    • pinch of sea salt & pepper


Ingredients for 1 burrito:

  • 1 large or small whole wheat tortilla**
  • 1/2 cup raw spinach
  • 1 serving of quinoa-cod mixture (large or small)
  • 1 or 2 servings of tropical salsa

** you can also omit the tortilla for a lower carbohydrate option


  1. Mix together all of the ingredients for the salsa in a large bowl. Season to taste with a little sea salt and pepper.  Remember you can easily make this your own by adding your favorite seasonal fruit, or even a bit of balsamic vinegar.
  2. Cook quinoa according to the instructions given. Generally, just combine quinoa and some water and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and cover and cook for about 15 to 20 minutes, until the quinoa has “sprouted” and can be fluffed with a fork.
  3. Season cod with cumin and chipotle chili, and then a few pinches of sea salt and pepper.
  4. Spray a nonstick skillet with extra virgin olive oil and set it on medium high heat. Once the skillet is hot, toss in the cod and cook on both sides until the flesh of the cod has turned white, about 4 to 5 minutes on each side.
  5. Add the cod to a bowl with the cooked quinoa and flake the cod with a fork.  Toss in the green onions for extra flavor and then mix it all together.
  6. Build the burrito! To a whole wheat tortilla, add spinach, quinoa-cod mixture and then top it off with fresh salsa.
  7. Roll it up and try not to bite your fingers.


Approximate macros for 1 of 3 larger burritos:

490 calories, 38g protein, 60g carbohydrates, 10g fat, 9g fiber, 8g sugar

Approximate macros for 1 of 6 smaller burritos:

242 calories, 19g protein, 30g carbohydrates, 5g fat, 5g fiber, 5g sugar

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