Healthy and refreshing, this Easy Vegetable Quinoa Salad is the perfect dish to make ahead and have in the refrigerator all week. Full of protein, fiber, and flavor, you don’t want to miss this healthy superfood recipe that’s vegan and vegetarian friendly.
We should all know by now that quinoa is a superfood. Full of fiber and protein, this once ancient grain seems to be having a moment. And don’t count on it changing anytime soon.
According to a study by Harvard Health, diets including whole grains, which are full of both soluble and insoluble fibers, have been shown to lower cholesterol and protect again heart disease. Grains like quinoa, farro, barley, and bulgur, are heart healthy and something we should definitely be including in our diet more.
This Easy Vegetable Quinoa Salad is simple to make and so tasty. Because the combination of crunch and chew is so satisfying, you won’t even realize that you’re eating food that’s good for you.
Make-Ahead Superfood Recipes
In addition to whole grains like quinoa, other superfoods listed by the Harvard Health study include: berries, fish, leafy greens, nuts, olive oil, yogurt, cruciferous vegetables, legumes, and tomatoes. These diet staples are similar to those boasted by the Mediterranean diet focusing on healthy fats and healthy carbs.
Some healthy make-ahead recipes including these superfood staples include:
- Salmon baked in foil with caramelized onions
- Kale Quinoa Salad
- Easy Vegetarian Chili
- Farro Tabbouleh Salad
- Brussels Sprouts Salad
All of these superfood recipes are simple to make, full of flavor, and can be made ahead. Make a couple of these recipes on a Sunday and feel good knowing you have healthy and delicious food available all week long. A full fridge helps the body make a smart and healthy choice.
How to Make Easy Vegetable Quinoa Salad
Easy Vegetable Quinoa Salad is, well, just plain easy to make! First, cook the quinoa. If you’ve never cooked quinoa before, it’s super easy to do and no different than making rice. Just bring water to a boil, add the quinoa (no need to rinse), bring to a simmer, and cover and cook for 15 minutes. Next cool slightly and add to large bowl.
After that, just add the remaining ingredients to the bowl. No need to make the dressing separate, you can just toss it all together.
This salad can be made ahead and stay in the refrigerator for up to a week. Because it is customizable, feel free to substitute whatever veggies you have on hand. Additions like corn, broccoli, cauliflower, peas, and edamame would all be delicious.
Another added benefit of this Easy Vegetable Quinoa Salad is that it contains plenty of the superfoods: quinoa, legumes, and tomatoes.
Serve the salad cold as is or toss it with leafy greens for an update to your green salad. Or you can top it with salmon or grilled chicken for a heart healthy dinner. Moreover, add this dish to your weekly meal prep and be sure to have a healthy and delicious option for your weekday dinners and lunches.
Easy Vegetable Quinoa Salad
- 1 cup quinoa, uncooked
- 1 15 ounce can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 English cucumber, peeled and diced
- 1 bell pepper, seeded and diced
- 1 large tomato, diced (about 1 cup)
- 1/4 cup red onion, finely diced
- 1/4 cup parsley, chopped (could substitute cilantro)
- 1/4 cup lemon juice (about 2 small lemons)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- Bring 2 cups of water to boil. Add in quinoa and reduce to a simmer. Cover and let cook for 15 minutes until water is absorbed. Transfer to a large bowl to cool slightly, at least 10 minutes.
- Into the bowl with the quinoa, add in the remaining ingredients. Toss together to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.
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