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Quinoa Salad

Updated: Aug 30, 2022

Recipe contributed by Melissa Lopez-Pentecost, PhD, RDN

This healthy, hearty salad is a great option for a potluck, barbecue or picnic this Easter weekend. It is very high in fiber, with almost 20g dietary fiber per cup. Fiber is great for your health; it helps regulate bowel movements for colon health, reduces your cholesterol, and even helps regulate your blood sugar. For extra flavor, use fresh grilled corn cut off the cob instead of canned!

This salad is a great main dish for vegetarians with 18g protein per cup!


1 ½ cups quinoa (dry)

3 cups water or broth of your choice

15 oz can of black beans, low/reduced sodium

15 oz can of garbanzo beans, low/reduced sodium

15 oz can of corn, low/reduced sodium

1 red bell pepper, finely diced

½ small red onion, finely diced

¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped

Juice of 1-2 limes (to taste)

Salt and pepper to taste

1 large avocado, cubed

¼ cup feta or cotija cheese (optional)

Lime wedges for garnish (optional)

Hot sauce (optional)


  1. Place the dry quinoa in a fine mesh colander or sieve and rinse under cold running water for at least 30 seconds.

  2. Place rinsed quinoa and water or broth in a medium pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, and let it simmer for about 15 minutes or until water has been absorbed.

  3. Take the quinoa off the heat, cover it with a lid, and let sit for 5-10 minutes, then fluff with a fork. Place quinoa in the fridge for a few hours or spread on a baking sheet to help it cool more quickly. Place the cooled quinoa in a large mixing bowl.

  4. Open the cans of beans and corn, rinse well in cold water. Drain well and place in the bowl with the quinoa.

  5. Add the finely diced bell pepper, onion, and cilantro to the quinoa bowl. Add lime juice, salt and pepper to taste, and mix everything well.

  6. Finally, add avocado and cheese, if using, and gently stir together.

  7. Serve with extra lime wedges and hot sauce, if preferred.

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