Mix and match your meal prep/lunch routine with these three easy quinoa salad recipes! Between a Mediterranean Quinoa Salad with Lemon Dressing, an Asian-Inspired Quinoa Salad with Peanut Sauce, and a Nutty Quinoa Fruit Salad, there is something for everyone. Most recipes ready in 15 minutes, all vegan and gluten-free!
It’s that time of year when I start to get majorly bored with my current lunches in rotation. Perhaps it’s because we’re finally done with holiday craziness? I enjoy eating salads year round, but they really need to befully loadedfor me to get excited.
When planning lunches, my body craves variety, but not so much that I need to buy 15 ingredients for one recipe. I love meals that are easily adapted to whatever I have on hand. Enter: quinoa salad!
Quinoa Salad Benefits
Grain salad recipes are beautiful in their versatility. Mixing and matching vegetables, proteins, and dressing is the most fun part! Sometimes I’ll just prepare a large batch of grains at the beginning of the week just so I have some on hand. Today, we’re focusing on three simple recipes that can be made with cooked quinoa
Mediterranean Quinoa Salad with a Lemon Vinaigrette
Asian-Inspired Quinoa Salad with Peanut Sauce
Nutty Quinoa Fruit Salad with Cinnamon Maple Dressing.
These recipes all work well for packed lunch or a light dinner. The fruit salad has actually become a staple in my breakfast routine!
How to Cook Quinoa
Preparing a large pot of quinoa is fairly simple. It is often ready to eat in 15-20 minutes.
Rinse your quinoa in a fine mesh strainer to remove saponins. Read more about why rinsing here!
Using a 2:1 ratio of water and dry quinoa, combine in a sauce pan and bring to a boil, uncovered.
Once boiling, reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until water is absorbed.
Remove from heat, fluff quinoa with a fork, cover, and let steam for a few more minutes.
All of the recipes below can be easily doubled to feed more people. I actually find that they taste better the longer they sit, as flavors have more time to meld together.
Ways to Modify Quinoa Salad Recipes
In the Mediterranean Salad if you don’t have kale on hand, feel free to sub in another dark leafy green, like spinach. Chickpeas are my favorite plant-based protein, but another kind of bean is an easy substitute. Capers or olives would add even more Mediterranean flavor.
For the Asian-Inspired Salad, edamame is a fun plant-protein addition. Almond butter would work in place of peanut butter for the sauce. Be sure to use tamari instead of soy sauce if you are gluten-free.
In the Nutty Fruit Salad, any kind of frozen berry will work. It’s important to reserve the juices when thawing, as this becomes part of the dressing.
I hope you love these Quinoa Salad recipes! Please let me know which one you try first in the comments on on Instagram. Leaving a rating/review always helps me develop better content for you all.
For a more in-depth post on how to cook quinoa, clickhere.
Perfect for breakfast or a midday snack, this fun twist on traditional fruit salad is loaded with healthy fats and antioxidants! Quinoa adds additional protein, while a Maple Cinnamon Dressing adds satisfying flavor!
Quinoa Fruit Salad
1 and 1/2 cups cooked quinoa
2 cups frozen wild blueberries, thawed (or other frozen berry) (Thawed berries will help add juice to the salad))
1 large navel orange, peeled
1/4 cup almonds
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
Cinnamon Maple Dressing
2–4 TBS maple syrup, depending on sweetness preference
1 tsp cinnamon
Add all quinoa salad ingredients to a large bowl. Be sure to reserve the juices from the thawed fruit, as that will help coat the salad with flavor.
Combine the maple syrup and cinnamon in a small bowl. Pour over the top of salad and stir to combine.
Store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Prep Time:15 minutes
Category:Breakfast, Main Course, Salad, Side Dish, Snack
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About the Author
Hi, I'm Emily! Garlic Head is a plant-based recipe website for all eaters who want to easily, affordably, and sustainably incorporate more vegetables into their diets. My recipes focus on entertaining-style cuisine, perfect for celebrating all of life's little moments! Meet me here.