One of my favorite quinoa salads was first introduced to me at a potluck several years ago. Since then, I have made it countless times with only a few tweaks. I will admit that my kids do not love and adore this salad as much as I do, but I find it so truly versatile. I can throw it in a tortilla for a vegan taco filling, add it to a plate of greens, sautee it with some spinach or baby kale, or eat it as it stands. I love that all the ingredients are also readily available any time of the year. My husband and I devour this quinoa salad, and I encourage you to swap out ingredients for some of your family’s favorites!
I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before, but I’ll say it again — I love this blog because it’s like my own personal cookbook. Rather than searching through my piles of recipes, I can instead search my blog for all of my favorite recipes at the tip of my fingers.
My Favorite Quinoa Salad (gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free, nut-free, peanut-free, vegan)
- 1 cups quinoa
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 1-1/2 cups corn, frozen
- 15 oz canned garbanzo beans, drained
- 3/4 cup finely chopped sweet bell pepper
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/3 cup fresh lime juice
- 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- Place the quinoa in a bowl of water and swirl it around a few times. Drain the quinoa, then rinse the water in the same manner two more times to ensure you have removed any of the tart film/residue from the outside of the grain.
- Add 2 T of the olive oil to a pan and warm over medium heat.
- Add the drained quinoa to the pan, and saute for 3-5 minutes.
- Add 2 cups of water to the sauteed quinoa, and stir.
- Reduce heat to a very low boil, cover, and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until all of the water is absorbed and the curly part of the grains begin to release.
- Move the quinoa to a large bowl, and add the frozen corn. The corn will thaw out in the hot quinoa, and the quinoa will cool down to salad temperature. BAM. Two birds, one stone.
- Add the garbanzo beans, sweet bell pepper, cilantro, and stir well.
- In a separate bowl, add the lime juice, cumin, garlic, salt, and mix well.
- Slowly whisk in the 1/3 cup of olive oil until well combined.
- Pour the dressing over the quinoa salad.
- Serve warm, at room temperature, or chilled.
Note: If you choose to skip steps 2-5, it is significantly faster to cook the grains without sauteing them first, but you will be sacrificing flavor. Instead, add 1 cup of quinoa to only 1.5 cups of vegetable broth, and bring them to a boil together, then cover, reduce heat to a semi-low boil, and cook for 15-20 minutes or until the curly part of the grains begin to release. Do not skip step 1, as that is always a required step when cooking quinoa.