The best Mediterranean quinoa salad recipe you need to make today. It’s simple, delicious, and packed with so much yummy flavor.
Anyone that knows me, knows I absolutely love salads. I love salads. Some of my favorite salads include tomato and cucumber, kale salad, and arugula salad. My love for salads may have started from movies or cooking shows. I remember seeing people on TV serve salads in beautiful bowls with nice wooden spoons.
This easy quinoa salad is no exception. It’s great eaten alone and works as a refreshing side dish as well. Check out the salad ingredients below!
What is the Mediterranean Diet
- The Mediterranean diet is designed to emulate the traditional food choices of those living in countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea. The diet focuses on eating foods abundant in those countries. The Mediterranean region consists of 22 countries on 3 continents. The specific vegetables, fruits, and grains eaten daily vary by geography and culture.
- The commonality shared by most people bordering the Mediterranean Sea is the daily consumption of olive oil and plant foods (fruits, vegetables, legumes, grains, nuts, and seeds); moderate intake of fish, seafood, dairy, and alcohol, and limited consumption of red meat and added sugars.
- No one food or nutrient makes up the diet. Instead, it’s the synergistic effect of the overall eating pattern that leads to diets high in antioxidants, fiber, phytochemicals, healthy fats, and other disease-fighting nutrients.
What’s in this easy Mediterreanean quinoa salad
- quinoa: this star ingredient adds healthy protein & fiber
- red & yellow bell pepper: these sweet peppers add color and nutrients, like iron.
- cucumber: I love adding cucumbers to all my salads.
- chickpeas: adds additional fiber & texture.
- pickled red onion: you can add fresh or pickled onions of your choice.
- kalamata olives: they add flavor and are commonly found in Mediterranean recipes.
- sun-dried tomatoes: great for flavor and variety.
- fresh cherry tomatoes: you can use tomatoes of your choice.
- fresh basil: Packed with flavor and goes well with the salad ingredients.
- vegan feta cheese: provides creaminess and is common in Mediterranean salads.
How to make this Mediterranean quinoa salad recipe
- Rinse the quinoa and cook the quinoa according to the package instructions.
- Chop all the veggies into small pieces.
- Add the veggies, olives, chickpeas, quinoa, and feta to a large bowl and combine.
- Make the Greek salad dressing and drizzle it on top of the salad.
Mediterranean Salad Variations
- Roast vegetables like bell peppers, zucchini, and eggplant until tender and slightly caramelized.
- Mix the roasted vegetables with cooked quinoa, chopped fresh herbs like parsley and basil, and a tangy balsamic vinaigrette.
- Mix cooked quinoa with canned chickpeas, diced red bell pepper, chopped cucumber, chopped parsley, and crumbled feta cheese.
- Dress with a tangy lemon-tahini dressing made with tahini, lemon juice, water, minced garlic, salt, and pepper.
Fresh and Citrusy:
- Add segments of oranges or grapefruits for a burst of citrus flavor.
- Toss in chopped fresh mint, diced red onion, crumbled goat cheese, and a simple dressing made with olive oil, lemon juice, honey, salt, and pepper.
- Add diced avocado, cherry tomatoes, sliced red onion, and chopped fresh dill or cilantro to the salad.
- Toss with a creamy dressing made with Greek yogurt, lemon juice, olive oil, minced garlic, salt, and pepper.
Quinoa Mediterranean Salad Q&A
Yes, the Mediterranean diet focuses on eating foods abundant across 22 countries on 3 continents. The specific vegetables, fruits, and grains eaten daily will vary by geography and culture.
Feel free to add any cheese of your choice. For this quinoa salad recipe, we use vegan feta. Alternatively, you could use cheddar, blue cheese, mozzarella, parmesan, or goat cheese.
Quinoa is rich in B vitamins and minerals. Also, it has antioxidants and heart-healthy monounsaturated fat. The remaining ingredients in this salad are nutrient-dense.
A Mediterranean salad contains lettuce and green herbs such as basil, cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, red onion, feta cheese, and olives. It is tossed with a vinaigrette made with extra virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, minced garlic, oregano, salt & black pepper.
Yes, Mediterranean quinoa salad can be made ahead of time. It actually tends to taste better as the flavors have time to meld together. Just store it in the refrigerator in an airtight container, and consequently, it should last for a few days.
Yes, if you prefer a different grain, you can substitute it for quinoa. Some common alternatives include couscous, bulgur, or even cooked brown rice.
Mediterranean quinoa salad pairs well with various dressings. A classic choice is a lemon-olive oil vinaigrette. Or, try a Greek yogurt-based dressing, a tahini dressing, or even a balsamic vinaigrette for added flavor.
More delicious vegan salads & wraps
- KALE SALAD WITH LEMON DIJON DRESSING
- CHICKPEA & CAULIFLOWER LETTUCE WRAP
- EASY HUMMUS RECIPE
- 23 EASY VEGAN SALAD RECIPES
- CHICKPEA SALAD SANDWICH
- JEN ANISTON BULGUR SALAD
Leave a comment below, tag me on Instagram, and let me know if you make this delicious vegan Mediterranean Quinoa Salad Recipe.
Best Vegan Mediterranean Quinoa Salad Recipe
Meditterranean Quinoa Salad
- 2 cups cooked quinoa about 1 cup uncooked
- 1 red bell pepper chopped
- 1/2 cucumber chopped
- 1 cup chickpeas
- 1/2 small red onion finely chopped
- 1/2 cup kalamata olives cut in half
- 1/4 cup sundried tomatoes finely chopped
- 1/3 cup fresh basil finely chopped
- 1/4 cup crumbled vegan feta cheese use dairy feta cheese, if preferred
- 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes
Greek Salad Dressing
- 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 lemon juiced
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1 tbsp dried oregano
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- Make the salad: Mix all the salad ingredients in a large bowl.
- Prepare the greek salad dressing: Add all of the salad dressing ingredients, except the olive oil, to a bowl and whisk together. Slowly add the olive oil, and whisk fast, while pouring until the dressing has emulsified.
- Pour some of the greek salad dressing onto the quinoa salad and give it a taste. If you want more dressing, simply add more. Store leftover salad dressing in an airtight container. Enjoy!
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