Quinoa and Fresh Herb Salad

Quinoa and fresh herb salad on plate
Photo: Brynn McDowell, RD

Sometimes there is nothing more satisfying than a simple salad that is easy to put together and made with fresh ingredients.

This Quinoa and Fresh Herb Salad is light, full of fresh and vibrant flavors and just so simple.  It’s one of those dishes where you just feel healthier after eating it. Plus it’s a tasty way to get your daily greens in without feeling like you are chomping on a big bowl of lettuce.

Let the Flavors Mingle

Since the ingredients are so simple, the trick is to really let this salad sit in the fridge after adding the dressing to marinate for a bit and let all that fresh lime and spices work their magic. I used kale leaves because they are hearty enough to stand up to the lime dressing without getting soggy. There are not many things in life that I can’t stand more than soggy lettuce … yuck.

To add even more flavor, try cooking your quinoa using vegetable stock instead of water. A simple trick that can make a big difference.


Quinoa and Fresh Herb Salad

Serves 2

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 cup kale, chopped
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • ¼ cup cilantro, chopped
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • zest of 1 lime
  • juice of 1 lime
  • ¼ cup avocado oil (or olive oil if you prefer)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp cayenne
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds

Instructions

  1. Prepare the quinoa (using vegetable stock in place of water), according to the package instructions.
  2. Set aside to cool slightly
  3. In a large bowl, combine kale, parsley, cilantro, scallions and cooked quinoa
  4. In a small bowl, combine lime zest, lime juice, salt, pepper, cayenne and red pepper flakes.
  5. Slowly drizzle in avocado oil and stir to combine dressing.
  6. Pour dressing over salad and mix well.
  7. Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes to 1 hour to allow flavors to marinate.
  8. Remove from fridge and garnish with sunflower seeds and diced avocado.
  9. Enjoy!
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Brynn McDowell
Brynn McDowell, RD, is a dietitian based in Livermore, CA, and owner of The Domestic Dietitian. She blogs at www.thedomesticdietitian.com where she focuses on helping people create a healthy lifestyle in their homes. Connect with her on Instagram and Facebook.