GF vegan salad, ideal summer salad recipe, delicious anytime.

Quinoa Salad recipe: Easy gluten free salad with cooked quinoa, lightly steamed veggies, cucumber, fresh herbs, toasted sunflower seeds, zesty lime dressing. Ideal summer salad recipe, delicious any time of the year.

Enjoy this easy quinoa salad recipe, as a light meal, or a side dish. Add or sub optional ingredients to make it your own. This salad recipe is similar to tabouleh, only more substantial, as quinoa is a whole grain, while couscous is made with white flour.

Total Prep & Cook Time: 30 min

4 Main Dish Servings

Nutrition Data Per 228 g Serving: 258 cal, 10g fat, 4g sugars, 36g carb, 240mg sodium, 6g fiber, 9g protein, low Cholesterol, good source Vit A, C, K, Manganese, Folate, Magnesium. Estimated Glycemic Load 18


1 cup quinoa
1 1/2 cups cold water
1 cup chopped snow peas, or green beans, or green peas (fresh or frozen)
1 small carrot, peeled and grated or sliced thin
1 cup green or red pepper, sliced thin or diced
1 small ripe plum tomato, or cherry tomatoes
1 small cucumber, peeled and diced
1 cup chopped fresh parsley, cilantro, basil, dill or a combination of fresh herbs
1/4 cup toasted sunflower seeds (spread in a baking pan and toast for 10 minutes in 300 degree F oven)

  • Optional additions or substitutions: chopped scallions or red onion, artichoke hearts, walnuts or pistachios, black beans or chickpeas, fried or baked tofu, olives or capers, firm ripe chopped avocado


6 Tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
2 tsp balsamic or other vinegar
2 tsp toasted sesame oil
1 Tbsp Braggs liquid aminos or low sodium soy sauce
1 tsp agave or maple syrup
1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper

  • Optional additions or substitutions: Pinch of cayenne or chipotle powder, onion or garlic powder, minced fresh garlic, minced fresh or dried ginger, seeded and minced jalapeno or seranno pepper, olive oil to taste, salt to taste, fresh mint or dill, fresh or dried rosemary, thyme, margoram or oregano.


  • Protein Ebook
  • Rinse and drain quinoa through a large fine mesh strainer
  • Place in 2 qt pot with the water (no salt – quinoa cooks better without it)
  • Cover the pot, bring to a full boil, turn the heat to low, and cook for 12 minutes
  • Remove from heat and set aside to cool
  • Steam the carrots and green beans or peas for 1 – 2 minutes or until tender-crisp, drain, rinse in cold water and drain again
  • Blend dressing ingredients with a whisk or in a blender, or shake in a jar, and set aside
  • Stir the dressing and fresh chopped herbs into the quinoa in a large bowl
  • Chop the fresh herbs, tomatoes, pepper, cucumber and any other ingredients you’re adding
  • In a large bowl, gently fold all the salad ingredients into the quinoa with the dressing
  • Cover and chill, or serve immediately

Helpful Quinoa Hints:

  • Quinoa has high oil content, so should be stored in the fridge or freezer to avoid becoming rancid
  • A tight fitting lid is essential for even quinoa cooking
  • Most quinoa sold in N. America has been processed to remove the saponin coating which will give it a bitter taste. If there is a saponin coating, the rinse water will be soap bubbly, and you should rinse it several more times until the water is clear
  • When quinoa is fully cooked, little white spiral “tails” will appear with the grains. That’s normal.
  • Because of its high protein content, quinoa is a satisfying meal with a few nuts and veggies added.