Bored of the same ole’ salad? Tired of choosing between iceberg and romaine lettuce, tomatoes or no tomatoes? Why not try a quinoa salad?!
I was “Mayan Riviera Dreaming” the other day (what with the sun FINALLY shining outside), even though we were all stuck inside the house, sick as dogs! Sometimes just the thought of a warm place (or a great vacation) can lift someone’s spirits. In our house, food also does the trick!
This is one of our fave quinoa dishes, light and refreshing yet very filling. It’s one of my go-to recipes, especially during the summer months when we want to eat fresh and light.
It keeps very well in the fridge so don’t be afraid to make this hefty amount…the longer the ingredients sit, the better this quinoa salad tastes!
Don’t want to make this hefty amount? Check out my out the one-portion baby-friendly “Mexican Salad” recipe.
(Serves 4-6 adults)
2 cups pre-rinsed organic quinoa, uncooked
4-4 1/2 cups water
1 cup black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup corn (about 1/2 can)
1 ripe avocado, finely diced
1 ripe mango, finely diced
1 tomato, finely diced
1/2 lg. cucumber, finely diced
1-2 scallions, finely chopped
3-4 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp. cumin powder
2-3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
juice of 1/2 lime
salt and pepper to taste
pinch of cayenne (optional)
Quinoa cooking instructions:
In a medium pot, bring 4 cups water to a boil. Add quinoa, reduce heat to medium low and cook covered, stirring occasionally, until all the liquid has evaporated and the quinoa is cooked through. If need be continue to add more water (a few tbsp. at a time), stirring every now and again, until fully cooked.
*TIP: Taste often near the end of the cooking process to ensure you don’t overcook the quinoa and end up with a “mushy” Tex-Mex quinoa salad!
Set aside to cool thoroughly or transfer to a large bowl.
Cut avocado in half lengthwise. Score the pit with a large knife, twist and remove. Slice the avocado vertically and horizontally into 1 inch pieces. Remove the pieces by scooping out with a spoon.
Peel mango, cut off large slices around the pit then chop into 1 inch pieces. Chop the tomatoes and cucumbers into 1 inch pieces (you might want to slice the cucumber a little bit thinner so the pieces are easier to chew), finely dice scallion, and add all ingredients to a large bowl (or the pot, like I did! I stick with the pot then pop it in the fridge with the leftovers…one less dish to wash!).
Drain corn, drain and rinse beans then add both to the pot with all the other ingredients and mix to combine. Dress the salad with olive oil, lime juice, balsamic, cumin, and salt and pepper.
*TIP: To avoid over-dressing the salad, start with 2 tbsp. each of olive oil and balsamic then add more according to taste.
I usually let the salad sit in the fridge for at least an hour or two so the flavours can combine and soak through the quinoa.
Serve chilled and store the leftovers in the fridge for up to 3 days.
What’s your favourite quinoa dish?