There are probably a BAZILLION variations of the quinoa salad on the interwebs, here are the parameters for mine. Note I said parameters, use this “recipe” as a way of creating your amazing one-of-a-kind salad! My “go to” set of ingredients include: sun-dried tomatoes in oil, Persian cucumbers, some sort of pepper, carrots, artichoke hearts, cherry tomatoes, feta cheese. Putting this on a bed of greens makes a lovely salad or in lettuce cups for a pick up salad.
Cooked quinoa (cooking it in stock makes it tastier but this is optional)
Vegetable options – this is a great time to clean out the fridge or pick up seasonal fresh veggies or anything that just looks yummy, my go tos are: cucumber (I love Persian or English for the crunch), peppers (red, yellow, orange), carrots, cherry tomatoes, artichoke hearts (marinated is YUM), sun-dried tomatoes in oil, fresh basil
Protein options: feta cheese, marinated mozzarella, garbanzo or cannellini beans, cooked chicken
Dressing: olive oil, acid – red wine, white balsamic vinegar or lemon juice, salt and pepper. I love regular balsamic vinegar but the dark color will make your quinoa look yucky.
Directions (for approx 4 servings)
Into a bowl that will leave you room to mix:
- Chop your vegetables into equal bite sized pieces about 2 – 2 1/2 C of vegetables total
- Pour a 1/3 – 1/2 C of vinegar or lemon juice over your vegetables
- Add 1 to 1-1/2 C of cooked quinoa and stir. Add more quinoa if you feel the ratio doesn’t look right
- Add your protein – approximately 1 C and stir
- If you used sun-dried tomatoes in oil you may not need to add additional olive oil but if it looks dry add and 1/8 to 1/4 C and stir
- Taste, this is the most important part!!!
- Tinker – add more vinegar if needed or salt and pepper
- Eat at room temperature or chill for a couple of hours then serve
This can also be an amazing warm or room temperature salad using roasted vegetables instead of fresh.