I remember the first time I tried quinoa salad (is that a weird thing to remember?) but it was at the Oklahoma City Whole Foods. They had this dish called the ‘California Quinoa Salad” which was red quinoa, onions, red bell peppers, slivered almonds, raisins, and mangoes and HOLY YUM it’s so good. The next week I was in San Francisco and went to the Whole Foods there and found the same dish but it was only named “Quinoa Salad”. For some reason I got a huge kick out of it being named the California Quinoa Salad in Oklahoma but not in California. The lady at the counter very obviously gave me a pity laugh about it when I tried to explain the irony.
ANYWAY. Since, I’ve loved making my own since they’re so easy to throw together and are so customizable. This one is a classic for me and can easily be the topping on a salad, used as taco filling, or just eaten on it’s own. I can guarantee there will be plenty more quinoa salad recipes to come!
1 cup dry quinoa (makes about 3 cups cooked)
2 cups water
1/2 orange bell pepper
1/2 large cucumber
Juice from 1 large lemon (or 2-3 smaller lemons)
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 can Great Northern Beans
Handful of parsley
Wash dry quinoa in a strainer with water to remove its outer coating (takes away the bitterness)
Place in sauce pan and toast dry quinoa for about 5 minutes
Add 2 cups of water and bring to a boil
Once it begins to boil, turn it down to a simmer and cover it for 15-20 minutes until all the water has absorbed and then fluff with a fork
While you are waiting on the quinoa to cook, start diving your veggies and drain and wash your beans
Combine all dry ingredients (veggies and parsley) in one bowl and the wet ingredients (lemon juice and vinegar) in another and place in refrigerator
Once quinoa is finished cooking, let cool for a few minutes and then place in a large glass container in the rerigerator to chill
Once the quinoa is chilled, toss with dry ingredients and pour wet ingredients over the salad and mix
Let sit for a few hours (ideally overnight) to absorb the liquid and enjoy chilled!
Quinoa will last for 5-7 days in the fridge
Serving size: 1 cup | Makes 6 servings
Calories: 184 | Protein: 9g | Fat: 2g | Fiber: 5g | Iron: 13% RDA | Vitamin C: 34% RDA