It’s always good to have a batch of quinoa salad kickin’ around. It’s especially good to have one packed with raw veggies and sweet potatoes, drizzled with a glorious dressing.
Impress your friends and the next potluck, or just impress yourself on your next camping trip.
This passed weekend was filled with quinoa salad and the Best Soba Noodle Salad as we Stand Up Paddled the Thompson River on our Kahuna Paddle Boards for 3 days, finding beautiful camping spots along with way. These salads pack away in the cooler easily in a big zip lock bag (so gourmet, I know).
These salads plus a couple heads of crispy romaine…What more do you need for dinner on the river?
I don’t know about you, but I thoroughly enjoy wrapping everything in romaine leaves. Lettuce wraps all the way.
Quinoa, AKA the ‘Mother Grain’ contains all essential amino acids (what does essential mean? Well, in this case it means that the only way you can get these amino acids- the building blocks of protein- is to eat them. This is because your body can’t produce them on it’s own. These building blocks are great for hair and nail growth and tissue healing).
Sweet potatoes are the staple of the ‘centenarians’ (people who live passed the age of 100) of Okinawa. Include lots of these in your diet to get beneficial, complex carbohydrates, plus a magnitude of vitamins and minerals. Another benefit? So delicious.
Celery not only adds a nice crunch to this salad, but it also brings a natural salty taste. Any time you want to avoid the salt in recipes (to minimize water retention and puffiness), just throw in some celery. It’s also packed with fibre, water content, antioxidants, potassium, folate, and vitamins C, K, and B6. Your liver will thank you, and so will your skin.
Makes 6 servings
Prep time: 1 hour (unless you pre-make your sweet potatoes!)
- 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
- 2 cups water
- 2 large sweet potatoes, diced into bite sized squares
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 2 stalks of celery, minced
- 2 red bell peppers, chopped
- 1 cup black beans (either use a can, or pre-make your own by soaking 2-3 hours or overnight in water, rinsing, then bring to a boil and simmer for 2 hours)
- 1/2 red onion, diced
- Sprouts (your choice – I used mung bean sprouts)
- 1/2 cup parsley, roughly chopped
- 1 tbsp tahini
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1 garlic clove
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- Roast sweet potatoes: pre-heat oven to 400 F. Toss the diced sweet potatoes with garlic powder. Lay out on parchment paper covered roasting pan (or use a non-stick re-usable cooking sheet on your pan). Roast for 45 minutes.
- Cook the quinoa: throw the quinoa and water into a pot, bring to a boil, give it a stir, then simmer it for 15 minutes. Fluff with your fork.
- Make dressing: blend all ingredients together in a blender or mini food processor. OR use your hand power – just whisk tahini and lemon together, then mix in the rest of the ingredients.
- Mix all salad ingredients with dressing together in your favourite bowl! Garnish with extra sprouts and parsley.