Quinoa often has a “health food vibe” that puts many meat and potatoes kind of people off. This recipe though that I call my seriously delish quinoa salad is not only well, delicious, it also elevates this often underappreciated food to one that kids and adults will love.

Seriously Delish Quinoa Salad Recipe | Good Mood Foods | Maple and Marigold

Quinoa is a pantry staple in my home but that wasn’t always the case. There was a time when I wasn’t sure if my kids would take to it. Heck, who am I kidding? I wasn’t sure my hubby and I would like it. Boy, was I wrong. Especially in this variation of quinoa salad.

The recipe works to bring along to a pot luck, it works as a side with curry or even on its own as a light lunch. It totally helps that own quinoa is a complete plant-based protein, high in fibre and other micronutrients that remove inflammation in the body. There is more information here in the post, What’s the deal with Quinoa.

And if you’re wondering whether your kids will like it – well try it out . You never know until you do. My kids surprised me, maybe yours will too!

Seriously Delish Quinoa Salad Recipe | Good Mood Foods | Maple and Marigold

Seriously Delish Quinoa Salad Recipe

I often make salad with a tadka. You can totally transform any bowl of raw veggies with a (tadka) topping of hot oil, spices and garlic/ onion / nuts etc. It’s the technique that’s important and the reason why this cucumber curry salad finishes first at any pot luck. It’s the reason why this quinoa salad is seriously delicious.

Real Life Kitchen Tips

For cooked veggies, use whatever you have on hand. I often have leftover broccoli and I chop that down and toss it in. If you don’t have any leftovers, try chopped cucumbers

Looking for a nut-free version, use sunflower seeds instead of peanuts. They too make this dish shine and are so good for our mental and physical health.

Quinoa Salad
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Making the Quinoa
  • 1 cup quinoa (rinsed 3 times)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tsp oil
  • 1/3 tsp salt
For The Salad
  • 1/2 cup chopped red peppers
  • 1/2 cup cooked chickpeas
  • 1/2 juice Lime
For the topping
  • 1 tbsp Ghee or Oil
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds or cumin seeds
  • 2 tbsp peanuts (lightly crushed)
  • 1 chopped green chillies (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup cooked leftover veggies chopped finely
To make Quinoa
  1. Add all ingredients together and stir

  2. Place on stove on high till pot comes to a boil

  3. Turn stove down to medium and place lid

  4. Let the quinoa simmer till all the water soaked in – approx. 10 mins.

  5. Turn the heat off and leave the pan be with the lid on.

  6. Fluff with a fork in 5 mins

To Toss Salad
  1. Add the chopped veggies, lime juice and chopped red peppers in the quinoa.

For the Tadka (Topping)
  1. In a separate, small pan add the oil and let it come to high heat

  2. You'll see the shimmer

  3. Add the whole spices – mustard or cumin seeds

  4. Let the seeds cook and sputter for 30 secs. Turn the heat to just below medium.

  5. Add the peanuts in and toss for a little bit. At this time you can add the chillies in along with a little bit of salt.

  6. Once the peanuts are lightly browned, add them to the cooked quinoa salad.

  7. This topping should be added just as you're ready to serve.

  8. Serve with whatever you think your family will enjoy with this. See suggestions above.

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