So I’ll admit, I’m a bit of a quinoa addict. It does tend to be a common theme on this blog, but it is just so delicious and versatile! I am especially inspired to whip up some quinoa in the summertime, when I’m craving a fresh but wholesome meal that can be enjoyed outdoors. The past couple of weeks have been gorgeous in Seattle, and my weekends have been filled with BBQs and potlucks, which makes me oh-so-happy. Life doesn’t get much better than enjoying good company, soaking in the last couple of hours of sun with the aromas of the grill going, and chowing down on refreshing salads, fruits, and beverages. Quinoa salads are my go-to for potlucks and picnics, and this recipe is my new favorite. I can (almost) promise you that if you bring this to your next outdoor party, you will make friends.
This salad packs an incredible number of superfoods into one delicious, flavorful punch. Although completely vegan and gluten-free, an impressive amount of protein (17g!) is provided via the quinoa, almonds, and edamame, along with a generous helping of fiber, healthy fats, vitamins, and nutrients from the combination of veggies, fruit, grains, nuts, and herbs. I have made several versions of this salad, but this one is my favorite, because it has the sweet, savory, spicy, salty, crunchy, and smooth all in one bite. That being said, one of the great things about this salad is how easy it is to swap out ingredients for what you have on hand. For example, you could omit the spicy ginger or replace it with dried apricot or mango. You could use any type of nut, including walnuts or peanuts. There are endless variations of this salad, so feel free to mix it up, depending on your pantry stock and cravings! To conclude, if you don’t have a BBQ or potluck already on your calendar, it’s obviously time to host one (or find new friends!), and serve this superfood quinoa salad, of course. ;)
- 1 cup dry quinoa
- 1 cup shelled edamame, cooked
- 2 carrots, sliced and halved
- 4 scallions, thinly sliced
- 1 avoado, diced
- 1 cup cilantro, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup crystallized ginger, chopped
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1 lime’s juice and zest
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Rinse quinoa and place in medium saucepan with 1 3/4 cup water.
- Bring to a boil and then cover and let simmer for 15 minutes or until all the water is absorbed. Fluff with a fork and let cool.
- Combine lemon juice, zest, olive oil, cumin, paprika, salt and pepper in a jar or small bowl and mix well.
- In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients except for quinoa and avocado and toss with lime/spice dressing.
- Add cooled quinoa and avocado to the mixture and stir well, so that dressing is spread evenily. Use a wooden spoon and be gentle in order not to smash the avocado pieces.
- Enjoy immediately or store in tupperware in the fridge.