Recipes, Special Diets on September 7, 2011 by

Life:Styled: Quinoa and Mixed Veggie Salad (GF, V)

Hi my name is Christen and I’m a quinoa addict.

This funny looking grain is actually a seed, a complete protein source and considered a super food. It’s as easy to cook as white rice and the flavor benefits far out weigh i’s counterpart any day.

My love affair with quinoa (pronounced like keen-wa) started over three years ago when I found out I was gluten intolerant. Searching for anything and everything that I could eat was a crucial quest at that time in order to “stay on the wagon”. I discovered how very versatile it could be, subbing in for a more nutritious rice, used as pasta, flour, the list could go on and on. Bob’s even has a few terrific cookbooks they offer like Quinoa 365 if you’re looking for more ideas.

Another great thing? My kids love it! I think because of it’s nutty flavor and fun look. It’s also not sticky like rice can get so it stays fluffy and has great texture.

The Quinoa and Mixed Veggie Salad recipe I’m sharing today is good standby to have in your arsenal of quick and healthy weeknight meals. It comes together in 20 minutes and can be served as a main dish for a meatless meal, or is a great compliment to some sautéed fish or barbequed chicken.

A couple other variations we’ve done is adding cooked black beans for more protein or golden raisins to add a sweet balance with the curry dressing. Use whatever veggies you have on hand, the key is to have some with the crunch factor (like the carrots and bell pepper).  Want to add some essential Omega 3’s? Grind up a tablespoon of  Bob’s Chia Seeds and add to the dressing.

If you’re worried that your kids would never eat a dish with this many vegetables, just give it a try. They may just surprise you. The more you present a variety of good-for-you foods, the easier it gets. Another trick is to make sure and dice the veggies extra small. I do this so my kids are less likely to try and pick them out. They just slip right in with each bite. We have to do what we can!

Make sure you come visit me over at life:styled, where every Monday I share a weekly menu that helps get you organized for your crazy week of school and work ahead.

Bon Appétit!

Quinoa and Mixed Veggie Salad

  • 1 ½ cups Bob’s Red Mill Organic Quinoa
  • 3 cups Water
  • 1 large Bell Pepper (or 3 small)
  • 2 Tomatoes
  • 3 small Carrots
  • 1 Avocado
  • Juice of 1 Lemon
  • ¼ cup seasoned Rice Vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp Curry Powder
  • 1 ½ tsp Salt
  • ½ tsp fresh ground Pepper

Add the quinoa and water together in a pot over high heat. Bring to boil, reduce heat and  simmer for 20 minutes. Allow to cool.

In the meantime, finely dice the bell pepper, tomatoes, carrots and avocado. Set aside.

In a small bowl mix the lemon juice, rice vinegar, olive oil, curry powder, salt and pepper. Wisk until well combined.

Mix the quinoa in a large bowl combined with the chopped veggies. Add dressing and toss to coat. Serve on a bed of lettuce.


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