This simple spinach quinoa salad is full of fresh Mediterranean flavors, including lemon, sun-dried tomatoes and toasted almonds! It’s vegan and gluten free, too, so it’s a great potluck option. Recipe yields 4 side servings or 2 main dish-sized servings.
1 cup quinoa, rinsed in a fine-mesh colander
1/3 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped
2 cups roughly chopped fresh spinach or arugula
1/3 cup sliced almonds
1/4 teaspoon olive oil
Salt, to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
To cook the quinoa: Combine the rinsed quinoa and 2 cups water in a medium saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, then decrease the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook until the quinoa has absorbed all of the water, about 15 minutes, reducing heat as time goes on to maintain a gentle simmer. Remove from heat, cover, and let the quinoa rest for 5 minutes, which gives it time to fluff up.
Meanwhile, to prepare the dressing: Whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, mustard, salt and red pepper flakes. Season to taste with freshly ground black pepper.
To toast the almonds: Warm 1/4 teaspoon olive oil in a small skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add the almonds and a dash of salt and cook, stirring frequently (beware, these burn quickly!), until they are golden and fragrant. Transfer the toasted almonds to a medium-sized serving bowl to cool.
Once the quinoa is done cooking, fluff it with a fork and then transfer it into your serving bowl. Drizzle all of the dressing on top and toss to combine. Add the chopped sun-dried tomatoes and wait a few more minutes to add the spinach so it doesn’t wilt completely. Toss again, season to taste with additional salt and pepper, if necessary, and serve immediately.
Recipe inspired by a quinoa salad at Whole Foods Market. Make it nut free: Replace the almonds with pepitas (green pumpkin seeds). Sunflower seeds might be nice, as would pine nuts if you aren’t sensitive to them (they are technically seeds). Storage suggestions: This quinoa will keep well, covered and refrigerated, for several days. Gently reheat or serve chilled.
▸ Nutrition Information
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