Spicy Quinoa Salad

Today’s spicy quinoa salad is the perfect quinoa recipe for your busy week! I talk a lot about how I make a big batch of quinoa on the weekend so that I have it on hand to quickly make quinoa recipes during the week. Most often, I will make it on Saturday so that Sunday morning I can whip up the boys quinoa pancakes or donuts.

For me, the solution to feeding four people (3 meals a day) without anything coming from a box and only eating out once a week is planning and making things like quinoa ahead. As an example, yesterday not only did I use the quinoa I’d made to make the boys donuts for breakfast, I also made six pizza doughs for the freezer, using a modification of this flat bread pizza recipe where I use cooked quinoa for 3/4 cup of the cereal mix. (I make a double recipe every other week.)  I also made a double batch of quinoa fritters, which my entire family will happily eat during the week.
spicy quinoa salad

The rest of the week, I will rely on easy quinoa recipes like this spicy quinoa salad. Starting with cooked quinoa, it takes less than 10 minutes to prepare. And, while it certainly falls under the category of easy quinoa recipes, it isn’t short on taste!

I love chipotle peppers in adobo sauce and was thrilled a few years ago when I found it in spice form. Like cayenne pepper, it really adds heat to a dish but the heat here is quite different and well worth stocking your kitchen with one more spice. If you don’t have it on hand and aren’t that into hot dishes, feel free to use cayenne pepper instead.
spicy quinoa salad recipe

What about you? What are your solutions to feeding your family a healthy diet without getting overwhelmed?

Spicy Quinoa Salad

  • 3 cups cooked quinoa (1 cup uncooked)
  • 2 cups corn
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 T fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 T olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp chipolte chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp salt

  1. In a large bowl, combine quinoa, corn, red pepper and cilantro.
  2. In a small bowl combine lime juice, olive oil, garlic, chipolte chili powder, smoked paprika and salt.
  3. Toss dressing with quinoa mixture and serve at room temperature or chilled.

Preparation time: 8 minute(s)

Cooking time:

Diet type: Vegan

Number of servings (yield): 4

Calories: 243

Fat: 5.2 grams

Protein: 8.6 grams

Carbohydrates: 43.4 grams

Fiber: 5.7 grams

5 :  ★★★★★ 1 review(s)

Recipe by Cooking Quinoa.

  • Ira

    Your blog is amazing! I am amazed of all the preparation possibilities for quinoa

  • Valerie

    Although they're not mentioned in your list of ingredients, did you garnished this dish with sunflower seeds?

  • Lynn

    I am going to give this a try, but like Valerie mentioned, did you garnish with some seeds? Perhaps sunflower or Pine nuts?

  • Wendy Polisi

    I actually used pumpkin seeds in the photo! Any type of nuts or seeds would be nice – this isn't a fussy dish. I gave my husband the photographed plate and didn't add anything to mine and it was still great!

  • akila

    Tried to cook quinoa without making it mushy….but failed…love the dish, if only my quinoa was not mushy…can u tell me how to make the perfect quinoa?

  • Jocelyn

    I've never made quinoa before, but I just tried this recipe and it's delicious! Next time I might add a touch more chipotle and paprika to give it more bite, and maybe add some nuts or seeds like you did in the pic. Thanks for the delicious and healthy recipe!

    • Wendy Polisi

      Jocelyn – I typically add more heat than I put in my recipes too – but we really like things spicy, garlicky and with lots of bite! I'm glad you enjoyed!

  • Afua

    i tried this recipe today, it is delicious my 4 yr old and my 8 yr old loved it. the flavors are perfect and it is super easy to make. The only changes I made were in how I cook the quinoa. For savory recipes I saute onions and garlic in a little olive oil and my cooking liquid is a mix of coconut milk and water (about 1:2) and I bring it to a simmer and turn down the heat just like how you say in how to cook perfect quinoa. Love your website

    • Wendy Polisi

      Thanks so much for letting me know! It makes me smile that your kids love it! I LOVE cooking quinoa in coconut milk! It works great for both sweet and savory dishes.

  • Nisha Nair

    Where do I post any quinoa recipe that I may have ?

    • Wendy Polisi

      Hi! I took the submit a recipe down because no one was using it. You can email me at wendy at wendypolisi dot com.