Simple Vegan Pasta with “Meatballs”

I’m in the middle of training for my very first 100K run and have been trying to get some distance runs in on the weekends.  And even though it was Halloween weekend (lots of festivities!!), I decided to sign up for a trail marathon on Sunday. Only….I forgot to turn my alarm on and woke up an hour late, an hour too late to run the marathon. Oops. But in my dedication to training right now, decided that just because I wasn’t in the race didn’t mean I couldn’t put the miles in that I had intended.  I headed out to Alpine Lake Dam area (near Fairfax) and did a nice, hilly 20+ miles that took me all around Mt. Tam, Fairfax beaches and Stinson Beach.

Gorgeous day and a gorgeous trail!

In anticipation of my long run weekend, I had picked up some rainbow quinoa pasta spirals as I thought it would be a nice and easy post race treat.

Simple, gluten-free, and vegan!


  • 2 cups quinoa pasta spirals (any pasta will do)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 2 medium zucchini, sliced
  • 4 leaves kale, sliced
  • 1 jar tomato basil sauce (any pasta sauce will do)
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • fresh basil
  • 1 Southwest Sunshine Burger patty, warmed and made into small balls (to resemble meatballs)

Bring a pot of water to a boil and add the quinoa spirals.  Cook for about 6-9 minutes or until tender.  Meanwhile, add the olive oil, garlic and chili powder to a medium saucepan and saute for about 1-2 minutes or until garlic has started to brown.  Add the zucchini and kale and saute for another 2-3 minutes or until zucchini is tender.  Add the pasta sauce, red wine, salt and pepper, and fresh basil and simmer on low heat for about 2 minutes.  Combine the cooked pasta with the sauce and then add the Sunshine Burger patty. Enjoy!

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