The recipe I have to share with you today is perfect for a Monday after you’ve spend Saturday and Sunday consuming copious amounts of sugar and zoning out to reality TV. In otherwords, you need to kick-start your body back into healthy mode, but you want to eat something that tastes good in the process. Enter this quinoa salad.
I’m a huge fan of quinoa because it’s so versatile; you can mix it with literally anything and it will taste good. You can replace it for rice or pasta in almost any dish and it won’t alter the flavor. But it will alter the nutritional stats, adding extra protein and fiber that no other grain contains. I’ve also recently been experimenting with chickpeas as a great meatless source of both protein and fiber. I have a few chickpea recipes coming in the next few weeks that I’m excited to share with you all. This salad is one of my favorites.
The ingredient list for the salad is very simple: quinoa, avocados, spinach, chickpeas, tomatoes, onion, garlic, lemon, cilantro, olive oil and a touch of cumin.
To start off, put the spinach and cilantro in the food processor and process until finely chopped. Set the greens aside. Then, put your onion and garlic into the processor and finely chop. You can do this by hand too, but since you already have the food processor out, you might as well take advantage of it
Cook your quinoa according to the instructions, and add it to a bowl with your chopped spinach, cilantro, garlic and onion. Chop up some avocados and tomatoes and add that to the bowl along with the drained and rinsed chickpeas.
To make the dressing, you want the juice of two lemons and the zest of one. Allow me to introduce you to two of my favorite kitchen appliances: the juicer and the zester.
They are only about $10 each and they are awesome. I highly recommend adding them to your utensil drawer.
The dressing is made with lemon juice & zest, olive oil, dijon mustard, agave, cumin, salt and pepper. This was the first recipe I ever used agave in and I was pleasantly surprised with the mildly sweet flavor it adds. Whisk all the ingredients together and pour it over the salad.
I don’t even have a picture of the mixed up finished product because we proceeded to scarf it down while standing up in the kitchen, refusing to even come up for air. It. was. good.
This is a really great salad to make at the beginning of the week and have for lunches and as a side dish at dinner all week long. It’s 100% healthy and tastes fantastic. Happy Monday!
- 1 Cup quinoa
- 1 Can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 Pint of cherry tomatoes, quartered
- 2 avocados, chopped
- 2 Cups of spinach, rinsed
- 1 Cup of cilantro, rinsed
- 1/2 Onion
- 2 Cloves garlic
- Juice of two lemons
- Zest of one lemon
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons of Dijon Mustard
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
- 1 Tablespoon of agave
- 1/2 Teaspoon of Cumin
- Salt & Pepper
- Cook quinoa according to instructions. Set aside in a bowl to cool
- Process spinach and cilantro in food processor until finely chopped; set aside
- Chop onion and garlic in food processor
- Drain and rinse chickpeas
- Chop tomatoes and avocados
- Combine the quinoa, spinach, cilantro, garlic, onion, avocado, tomatoes and chickpeas
- Whisk together the juice from two lemons, zest from one lemon, olive oil, agave, dijon mustard, cumin, salt and pepper.
- Pour over quinoa mixture
- Toss to combine