Citrus Red Quinoa Salad
When the Carnival Season comes to a close with Fat Tuesday’s feasting and all that is left from my King Cake is crumbs and jewels, it’s definitely time to slow down the pace, clean up the eating and begin the Lent Season. I do observe these 40 days of Lent starting on Ash Wednesday and leading up to Easter.
Abstaining from meat on Ash Wednesday and every Friday, I am looking forward to cooking and sharing many of my fish and seafood recipes and veggie main dishes. And so my daughter doesn’t feel like her only option is eating tuna fish, I’m posting this salad for her as I heard the slight panic in her voice the other day when we were chatting over the phone about meatless meals. Her long busy day running from classes to work to all her activities does make it hard for her to take the time to eat well. And she knows that getting enough protein in her meals helps her stay fuller longer.
Quinoa is a perfect little grain, actually a seed; that is a complete protein and a great source of nutrients. I’ve purchased both the white quinoa and red quinoa, now preferring the red more for salads. But either will work well, as I used the white in my Quinoa Tabbouleh . For this salad I kept it light and citrusy with chopped oranges, green onion, bell peppers and pine nuts for crunch, but the possibilities are endless; from dried fruits to chopped raw or cooked veggies, various fresh herbs and chunks of cheese.
Citrus Red Quinoa Salad
Pinch of Kosher salt
Zest from 1 large orange, then peel and roughly chop orange segments
1 red or orange bell pepper, diced
1-2 green onions, finely chopped
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts or slivered almonds
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
For the vinaigrette:
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice or lemon juice
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
¼ teaspoon minced fresh ginger
Pinch of cumin
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
I love being in the kitchen. Early mornings, soft music, a hot espresso. Easing into the preparation of delicious meals. Glancing through cookbooks, gathering inspiration and planning my day. I look forward to the cycles of the seasons, the pleasures of tasting and savoring and sharing this with those dear to me. Weekends are special to me as my week days are often rushed, but still I create the ambiance, light the candles, set the table and uncork the wine.
Quinoa is one of my favorite ways to sneak in more protein. I also eat a lot of lentils, which I think would be great with your ingredients here too. I may try that this week – the orange juice and ginger sound fantastic in the vinaigrette!
I know you are very familiar with Quinoa. And lentils is another good tip. I’m going to share that with my daughter too!
I’m probably the last person in all of WordPressLand to have never tried quinoa and it seems to me you and I may have had this conversation once before. One of these days, I’ll remember to buy some and then I’ll come back here and look up your quinoa recipes. If they taste anywhere near as good as the rest of your recipe file, I’m in for a treat. Wouldn’t it be ironic if quinoa was a proven memory booster? 🙂
I’m surprised to see that you are not the last person to have tried it based on the comments I’m seeing here!! I thought it was going to be another quinoa recipe, nothing new, but I’m so glad that many have not yet tried it. Hopefully you will some day and definitely report back and let me know!!
You just explained something for me, Linda. I thought I hated quinoa, but I ate it a few times in New Mexico. I didn’t know there were two types. It is white quinoa that I hate (formerly served as a breakfast cereal at retreats). I like red. I also like cumin, mint and citrus flavors, so I’m sure I would like your salad.
Yes, do try the red quinoa. I feel that the texture is sturdier for salads. I’ve heard of using quinoa for a hot breakfast; that sounds good to me, I’ve not yet tried it.
I fix quinoa for breakfast, just like I do oatmeal: brown sugar or maple syrup and milk. And I’ve branched out to adding coconut and raisins :)!
re the entire “meatless meals” – I typically cook a batch of quinoa or brown rice or both…and a pot of beans – on the weekend. The ways to use them are many but my fallback with both is a quick saute of “grain”, beans and whatever veg I have – in olive oil. A finish of lemon juice or a good vinegar and I have a meal that is filling and enjoyable and quick. Currently, citrus season, I add clementine or mandarin sections. But apple slices work also.
LOVE the citrus added to your quinoa recipe and I’ll have to try the red. I’ve assumed they all tasted the same – duh…
Oh Liz, that sounds really good for breakfast. I do have to try that. I like your tips for the meatless meals. I’m going to share those with my daughter. It is easy if you prepare ahead and this would be perfecft for her giving her more options. And for me too!
You know I love my grains and cereal and seeds, especially as a salad. This is a gorgeous recipe and I look forward to making the vinegarette!
I do love all your grain recipes!! You’ve got a good flair for combining great flavors!!
This looks really good. The first time I used red quinoa I thought it cooked at the same speed as white. It was REALLY chewy. 🙂
I’m going to try this but I think I’ll add raisins or sultanas to it just for a hint of sweetness.
That’s a good mix with the raisins; I’ve made it in so many different ways, kinda like whatever I had available was thrown in!!
I’ve seen this red quinoa, and your dish looks simply delicious!
This looks like a fantastic meal. I think I would enjoy this for lunch. It would be fresh, tasty and would keep me full until dinner. (And it’s much better looking that tuna fish.) 😉
I was actually thinking of you Kristy as we’ve mentioned to each other how we like to pack up lunches similar to this. A batch of this lasts me for several lunches and I’ll even throw in more stuff along the way to stretch it out!
Choc Chip Uru
Salad looks so light and refreshing, full of unique but delicious flavours 😀
Choc Chip Uru
Thanks, the citrusy taste definitely brights the salad.
I have only just started eating quinoa and it is really great – so thanks for a new recipe for me to try 🙂
Thanks, Tandy, I hope you like it.
I have yet to taste quinoa, I say it the other day in store and was put off by the very high price! Might have to go back and investigate it more.
You are right, the price is high. I look at it though as it is a healthy protien source and you’d pay that much for meat, chicken or fish!!
I´ve still not cooked with it as its so expensive here but I do enjoy it. Didn´t know though there was red and white….you see, you learn something every day! Am going to tell my mum about this as she uses it a lot and also observes lent so she´ll love a new way to cook with it 🙂
Isn’t that great about this blog world…learning something new! I’m always learning new things from you, so I’m glad I could do the same for you!!
Like Chica I haven’t cooked, actually I’ve never tried Quinoa, and really must make up for amends soon and try it in one of your salads.
I hope you do, it may become your favorite go to grain!
Ok – how do you rinse the quinoa without it floating away or sticking to everything? I’ve tried cooking it a time or two, with less than stellar results. I love to order it in restaurants, though!
lol…I probably should have written about that in my post. I use a fine mesh strainer and turn on the water! Some will definitely float up and some will sneak through the mesh. I have also placed a paper towel over the quinoa to hold it down when rinsing. That seems to be the best way to keep them in place!!
Just A Smidgen
I love quinoa, my son’s trainer introduced us to this “super food” two summers ago. It takes a simple salad and makes it a complete meal and I love that about it! I haven’t tried red quinoa and I’ll be looking to buy some know, it makes your salad so pretty and colorful!
Thank you – I’ve been telling my son that too. He likes to eat healthy but doesn’t like to go to any extremes…which he thinks this is. He just needs to try it!!
Just A Smidgen
It’s not my son and hubbys favorite, but this ain’t no restaurant and they have to eat what I make, lol!! I’m so mean!!
Just A Smidgen
He will love it if he tries!
You’re not mean Smidge…I’ve always done the same with my kids!
Mmmm, I love red quinoa, especially in salads, sometimes I just toss a handful into a salad or soup that I’m making 🙂 This looks like an excellent recipe, love the vinaigrette!
In soup too is a great idea!!
I love quinoa, can’t go wrong with a quinoa salad if you ask me. Looking forward to more of your meatless ideas and recipes!
I’m seeing now that’s its about 50/50 for people who have not eaten it and those who have. And as you know, once you do try it, you’ll love it!
I didn’t even know there was red quinoa?!? I need to get some, stat. I love the citrus mix with it, too. So jealous of your access to all the citrus. It’s not quite the same up here in the Pacific NW.
We are the orange state! The season is almost over here though, next is all the berries!!
Kelly @ Inspired Edibles
What a lovely salad; red quinoa is delicious and there are so many different ways you can enjoy it and serve it up. I like the addition of nuts and citrus here – what a gorgeous vinaigrette too with the ginger… yum, a perfect protein for meatless days…
Thanks Kelly. I’ve told my daughter to check out your recipes for lots of good ideas too!!
I’m not sure that I’ve ever had quinoa before. Going to have to check with Liz, as she keeps records of the foods I’ve consumed (I keep track of the wines she’s enjoyed). 🙂
It does sound good to me though!! Have a great weekend Linda!
Thanks so funny Jed, I’ve definitely heard of keeping records on wine favorites, but food too??!! I’d love to see a list of all the food you consumed!! I did keep a list of things I knew my frequent guests didn’t like or were allergic to so that when I threw dinner parties I wouldn’t serve something they didn’t like or couldn’t eat!
What a beautiful salad with the red quinoa, and it looks like it would be so refreshing and light. I’ve tasted white and red quinoa and yet never cooked it. Must see about remedying that!
Thanks – you know, I’ve never had it in a restaurant, I’ve only made it myself!!
The quinoa salad sounds delicious especially with all the fresh citrus available right now. I had a nice salad on our trip that was made with black quinoa but have not seen it in the stores in New Hampshire.
Now I’ve never seen black quinoa….that sounds interesting and a great idea for Halloween !
You are right Linda…it would be perfect. I’m going to be looking for it here in New England.
Geni - Sweet and Crumby
Linda, this looks like the best way to start off the clean eating this week and one would never miss the meat. I love the mix of flavors with the simple vinaigrette. The photo is stunning; I’ve noticed your photos have gotten even better! Any tips?
Geni, I still have a hard time taking photos!! Out of hundreds I take!! Really, its luck. I don’t have a fancy camera but do try to always take them in daylight tho my King Cake was taken indoors at night…I really need to take a class!!
I didn’t even know there was such a thing as “red quinoa” – is that the only “other” colour, or are there other types too? I’m not sure if I could find it here – would have to look hard. It sounds wonderful, I bet it’s just great to heap onto a plate and wade in 😀
I just learned from Karen there is a black quinoa, tho I’ve not seen it. Other than that, I think red, white and black is it!!
Amy (Savory Moments)
Mmmm. Your quinoa looks so fresh and tasty with the citrus and touch of ginger!
Quinoa, I just bought a box for the first time the other day. Very difficult finding some of these ingredients here in HK. I would love to give this recipe a try as it sounds so refreshing.
Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide
You certainly don’t waste Florida’s bounty of citrus!
I have not yet tried red quinoa, but it is on my list! I love citrus flavors which would be great with quinoa–great recipe!
I really do need to start cooking with red quinoa more. This looks delicious and a fab way to clean up for lent.
The Conservative Hill Billy
Reblogged this on theconservativehillbilly and commented:
Please visit Savoring Every Bites’ blog. You will leave hungry:)
This looks gorgeous! I am stock piling quinoa recipes for the summer. It is such a healthy a nutritious alternative. Thank you!
That looks so delicious! I know its something I need to try!