Quinoa is a versatile base for salads. It’s nutritious, tastes nutty, and it is very easy to prepare. It’s vegan, easy to make, and tastes incredible. Whether you already love quinoa or don’t cook it often, this will become your new go-to salad. Add lots of colorful and crunchy vegetables, nuts or seeds, and something a bit sweet like dried blueberries or cranberries.
Ingredients for Quinoa Salad
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa
- 2 cups water
- 1/2 cucumber
- 1 medium bell pepper, chopped
- 1 baby bok choy, chopped
- 1/2 cup nuts and seeds like walnuts, pine nuts, sunflower seeds
- 1/4 cup dried fruit, blueberries
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh herbs
- 1 cup cooked chickpeas
FOR THE DRESSING
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon honey
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- Juice from 2 to 3 lemon, optional
How to Make Quinoa Salad
- Add the quinoa to a fine mesh colander, then rinse with cold water for 30 seconds to a minute. You can also add the quinoa in a bowl and cover with cold water.
- Move the quinoa around the bowl, then drain the water and repeat once more, so that the quinoa has been rinsed. Shake the quinoa of any excess liquid. Combine rinsed quinoa and water in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat.
- Bring to a boil then reduce to low heat and cook uncovered until the liquid is absorbed by the quinoa, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and cover for five minutes.
- This extra time allows the quinoa to steam and “swell”. Uncover, then peel the quinoa with a fork. Set aside to cool slightly.
- When the quinoa has cooled slightly, in a large bowl, combine the quinoa, chickpeas, cucumber, pepper, bok choy, nuts, seeds, dried fruit and herbs.
- In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil, apple cider vinegar, mustard, honey, salt and pepper until well blended. Pour the vinaigrette over the salad and mix well.
- Taste then adjust with additional salt and pepper as needed. For an extra touch of flavor, spray the juice of lemon on the salad. To serve.