This is the ultimate quinoa salad for summertime as it’s LOADED with fresh herbs and hydrating veggies! I find quinoa one of the most perfect grains to enjoy in summer time as it’s hearty, but not heavy, loaded with nutrients & protein, and seems to pair so well with just about any seasonal summer ingredient!
Did you know quinoa is one of the few plant based foods that is actually a complete protein?! This means that just like animal based proteins, quinoa actually contains ALL 9 essential amino acids, that one’s body cannot produce on its own. Pretty cool eh? Not only this, but 1 cup of cooked quinoa provides 8 grams of protein and 5 grams of fibre. Definitely makes it a great reason to eat more quinoa!
Another great thing about this salad that I mentioned earlier is that it’s loaded with fresh herbs! Fresh herbs are so amazing as they’re anti-inflammatory, a lot of them have a mild cleansing effect on the body, and they’re loaded with anti-oxidants. This makes fresh herbs a very wonderful thing to include in an anxiety easing diet.
Okay – so now on to the recipe!
For the Salad
– 1.5 cups quinoa
– 1/2 cucumber, thinly sliced and then chopped into quarters
– 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in halves or quarters
– 1 bunch parsley, finely chopped
– 1 bunch dill, finely chopped
– 2-3 stalks kale, de-stemmed and finely chopped
– 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
– 1/8 tsp cumin, paprika, and sea salt
– Optional for summertime: 1 ripe peach, chopped into small bite size pieces
– 1/4 cup olive oil
– 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
– 1 clove garlic, minced
– Salt and pepper to taste
– Optional: 1-2 tsp honey or maple syrup
– Tahini sauce
– Hummus or babaganoush
– Scoop of sauerkraut or pickled veg
– Nasturiums (or other edible flowers)
– Other roasted veg: zucchini, yams, bell peppers, beets, etc.
– Cook quinoa according to package directions
– Chop all veggies/ herbs and add to a large salad bowl
– Make the dressing in a small jar or bowl
– In a cast iron pan, saute the chickpeas, cumin, paprika, sea salt and olive oil – add more spices to taste
– Allow them to saute until they begin to lightly crisp up
– Once quinoa is finished, allow to slightly cool and then add to bowl with herbs/ veggies
– Generously coat with the dressing
– Scoop into bowls and add any extra toppings of choice (tahini sauce, hummus, olives, etc.)