Gluten-Free Grains: Quinoa Salad With Refreshing Add-Ins

Gluten-Free Quinoa Salad
Dana Angelo White
Total Time 40 min
Prep 15 min, Cook 25 min
Yield 6 cups (227 cals per cup)

You may have heard that quinoa is a protein-rich option (it has 8 grams of hunger-fighting protein per cup!), but this gluten-free seed is also packed with minerals like iron and magnesium, all reasons you'll want to incorporate it into any diet, not just a gluten-free one. When mixed with fresh veggies, beans, and a sprinkle of cheese, quinoa can be a satisfying side dish to serve with meat or fish or a standalone vegetarian main course.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dry quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cups water
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup diced cucumber
  • 1 can (15-ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • ¼ cup green olives, sliced
  • 2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Preparation

  1. In a saucepan, combine quinoa and water, bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes or until water is absorbed and quinoa is tender.
  2. Once quinoa is cooked, transfer to a large bowl, stir in 1 tablespoon of olive oil and set aside to cool, at least 20 minutes.
  3. Add black beans, cucumber, goat cheese and parsley. Toss to combine.  
  4. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Ingredient Variations and Substitutions

This recipe features red quinoa, but any variety will work nicely.

The combination of quinoa and beans makes for a high-fiber meal that will keep hunger at bay for hours. Add any fresh, seasonal veggies for more color, flavor, and crunch.

If you aren’t a fan of tangy goat cheese, a milder feta works as a good substitute.

Cooking and Serving Tips

Make a large batch of this salad on the weekend and graze on it for lunches and dinners throughout the week; it tastes even better the few days after it's prepared. Serve with barbecued chicken or a piece of roasted salmon.

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