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Spinach Mushroom Couscous in a bowl 1
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4.50 from 6 votes

Vegetable Couscous

A nice change from rice, vegetable couscous is a healthy and quick vegetarian side dish. Add some beans, chicken or tofu and turn it into a full meal.
Prep Time8 mins
Cook Time15 mins
rest5 mins
Total Time28 mins
Course: Main Vegetarian dish, Side Dish
Cuisine: Middle East
Servings (change as needed): 5 sides
Author: Cheryl


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onions (1/2 medium onion)
  • 2 cups chopped vegetables, diced small, Note 1
  • 2 cups roughly chopped fresh baby spinach
  • 2 teaspoon minced garlic (2 cloves)
  • 1 1/4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon butter (or oil)
  • 1 cup dry couscous


  • 1 teaspoon -2 curry powder optional
  • 1 teaspoon dried herbs (e.g. thyme, oregano, basil, tarragon)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt or more depends on saltiness of broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
  • zest of one lemon (or 1 tbsp lemon juice)
  • Garnish: splash of olive oil, additional chopped herbs e.g. fresh parsley or cilantro, basil, thyme


  • SAUTE VEGGIES AND AROMATICS: Heat oil in medium saucepan to medium high. Add onions and chopped vegetables. Saute until all water is absorbed, about 8-10 minutes. Mix in spinach and garlic, stirring for 1 minute.
  • MAKE COUSCOUS: Add broth, butter, seasonings to saucepan with vegetables. Bring to boil. Stir in couscous and remove saucepan from heat. Cover and let sit for 5 minutes. Fluff with fork. Stir in lemon zest or juice. Taste, adjust seasonings. Add garnishes as desired.


  1. Vegetable options: 8 ounces (225g) of mushrooms makes 2 cups chopped. Or use other vegetables such as zucchini, peppers, kale
  2. Variations to try: 
    • Use tri-coloured or whole wheat couscous.
    • Use any type or mix of mushrooms such as Shitake, Portabello, Oyster, White Button
    • Herb  options: thyme, basil, tarragon, cilantro, oregano.
    • Stir in some cooked sausage, beans, tofu or chicken to create a full meal.
  3. Make Ahead:  Saute all the vegetables ahead, leaving the last step (boiling the broth, adding the couscous, then letting it sit for 5 minutes) until just before serving. Alternatively, make the entire dish then warm in microwave for a minute or two.
Nutrition values are estimates.
Calories: 244kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 6mg | Sodium: 537mg | Potassium: 325mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 5018IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 52mg | Iron: 2mg