I was recently asked to make some food for the friend of a friend who is ill and unable to prepare her own meals. The menu included Cincinnati Chili with all the fixin’s, Oma’s Cheesy Tuna Casserole and Catalan Chickpea and Spinach Soup. I also prepared a variety of baked goods and fresh salads including this Quinoa Vegetable Salad which I love.
This salad is crisp and refreshing with tender chewy quinoa mixed with chopped vegetables and complemented with fresh herbs. Plus it is super healthy and keeps for up 3-4 days, so it is a nice choice to make ahead for a party or to prepare on a Sunday and eat during the week.
Quinoa Vegetable Salad
Adapted from All Recipes
- 2 teaspoons canola oil
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1/4 cup diced yellow onion
- 2 1/2 cups water
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 cups quinoa
- 3/4 cup diced fresh tomato
- 3/4 cup diced carrots
- 1/2 cup diced yellow bell pepper
- 1/2 cup diced cucumber
- 1/2 cup corn kernels, lightly cooked or thawed from frozen
- 1/4 cup diced red onion
- 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Heat the canola oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook and stir the garlic and 1/4 cup onion in the hot oil until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. Pour in the water, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper and bring to a boil. Stir in the quinoa and reduce heat to medium-low, and cover. Simmer until the quinoa is tender, about 20 minutes. Drain any remaining water from the quinoa with a mesh strainer and transfer to large shallow pan to cool. When it is closer to room temperature, refrigerate until cold (at least one hour).
Stir the tomato, carrots, bell pepper, cucumber, corn, and 1/4 cup red onion, cilantro, and mint into the chilled quinoa. Drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar over the salad and mix to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate until needed.