These days, I feel like I am LIVING on quinoa salad!
When the weather heats up, I find myself wanting to spend as little time in the kitchen as possible. Since I’m in Arizona, staying cool is one of my primary concerns. Still, all that pool time makes me more conscious than ever about what I eat. Summer is no time to slack off on your clean eating. (Have you checked out Tosca’s New Book Yet –Your Best Body Now ? )
My summer solution – quinoa salad! There are few things I enjoy more than a delicious cold quinoa salad and as a vegetarian, this is one of my go to ways to get a complete protein into my diet. One of my favorites is a quinoa Greek salad, although there are so many delicious quinoa recipes out there it is difficult to decide which one is best. I really enjoy experimenting with quinoa salads, and especially like creating my own recipes or changing recipes that I find.
If you are headed to the beach or on a picnic, quinoa salad is great because it packs well. You can even make it ahead of time!
Try These Great Quinoa Salad Recipes!
(As Well as My Balsamic Vinaigrette so you can make your own!)
One thing to keep in mind when making any quinoa salad recipe is that you can always prepare the quinoa ahead of time. I will typically cook a big batch on the weekend. It will keep for up to seven days in the refrigerator so it is perfect for those days when I want to get out of the kitchen and back to the pool. Check out my post on my favorite herb grinder which is perfect to get you out of the kitchen fast! Do you have favorite quinoa recipes salad or otherwise? If so I’d love to hear from you.
By the way, did you know that one cup of cooked quinoa has just 220 calories? It also provides you with 8 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber. The protein in quinoa is unique, because it is one of the few vegetarian proteins that is considered complete. This means that quinoa provides your body with all eight of the essential amino acids that your body needs to heal. Quinoa is great for everyone, but this makes it especially great for vegetarians and vegans or those who aspire to be!
Red Quinoa vs White Quinoa – Which is best for quinoa salad?
If you ask me, both work nicely. Red quinoa is a bit firmer and doesn’t absorb water nearly as easily as white quinoa. So, if you like a firmer texture it is perfect. I like to steam quinoa when I use it in a salad, and red quinoa steams beautifully. If you are entertaining or just want a really interesting presentation, I love to mix red quinoa and white quinoa in a salad!
Quinoa in the News!
Turns out that quinoa salad just may be good for your fitness routine. Self Magazine recently named quinoa as one of the “6 Best Foods for Runners”. The list names the 6 best superfoods that runners should eat to fuel up, stay thin and recover from exercise.
The article went on to say that quinoa was important to athletes because the amino acids can help your body mend itself after exercise. It also mentioned what a great low-calorie alternative to pastas and other grains quinoa is! I always knew cooking quinoa was a great idea!