Home RecipesSide Dishes 15 Simple Quinoa Salads [Recipes]

15 Simple Quinoa Salads [Recipes]

by Tansy Boggon

Satisfy your taste buds and appetite with these recipes for simple quinoa salads that span various cuisines and seasons. Enjoy!

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Why is quinoa great in salads?

Quinoa has a nutty taste and chewy texture that is delicious in salads. It has little flavour, so you can use it for many cuisines. Quinoa is also a great substitute for bulgur wheat, couscous and orzo pasta for those eating gluten-free.

Adding a grain like quinoa to a salad can make it a complete meal if the salad has adequate protein or protein served on the side.

Bowl with Lentil Quinoa Salad on dark pink background.
Quinoa Salad with Lentils.

Is quinoa salad good for weight loss? [FAQ]

If you know anything about me, you know that I would never promote a food for weight loss!

As a non-diet nutritionist, I believe we can eat in many ways to provide our bodies the nourishment it requires and that there is no perfect diet.

Therefore, I do not advocate eating in any way to promote weight loss or declare that a food is healthy.

I believe in health at every size and that eating for weight loss, aka restricting your intake, can undermine your health and, worse, is harmful. Eating for weight loss or health goals can lead to disordered eating behaviours, such as orthorexia.

I hope to sway you away from weight loss or weight maintenance goals to eating foods you enjoy and satisfy your hunger and nutritional needs.

Salads made with quinoa are high in fibre and protein, which makes them more filling than green leafy salad, which rarely would suffice as a complete meal. A salad with quinoa absolutely could.

So, if you want a salad that can be enjoyed as a complete meal or alongside meats to sustain your energy and ward off hunger until your next mealtime, try adding quinoa.

Prawn [Shrimp] Quinoa Salad.

How to cook quinoa perfect for a salad

Click the link below for my recipe and tips for cooking quinoa that is perfect for salads.

Cooked Quinoa
Learn how to cook quinoa perfect for salads.
Get recipe and tips on how to cook quinoa
Bowl with cooked quinoa and measuring cup with uncooked quinoa.

Can you serve quinoa salad hot or cold?

You can serve quinoa salads hot or cold depending on the other ingredients combined into the salad. Thus, quinoa is a great addition to salads all year round.

If you are making and eating your quinoa salad right away, you may enjoy it warm. It is delicious warm with roasted veggies or meat and is a great way to enjoy salad in the colder months.

However, it is best to combine quinoa into a salad when it is cold if the salad contains ingredients that should not be warmed or would lose texture when warmed, such as some herbs, tomatoes and cucumber.

Combining quinoa into your salad slightly cooled prevents it from becoming too mushy, which can also occur if overcooked.

White plate with Pumpkin Quinoa Salad and a fork.
Salad with Pumpkin and Tricoloured Quinoa.

Your choice of quinoa for salad recipes

White or tricolour quinoa are great in salads. It depends on the colour you want and what you have available.

15 satisfyingly simple quinoa salad recipes

I have compiled some quinoa salad recipes that are easy to make and seriously satisfying. I hope they provide some inspiration for your salads. Enjoy!

High-protein quinoa salad recipes

Lentil Quinoa Salad
An easy salad with lentils, quinoa, herbs, cucumber, capsicum, cashews and dates that is satisfying enough to be a complete meal.
Get recipe for Lentil Quinoa Salad
Bowl with Lentil Quinoa Salad on dark pink background.
Prawn [Shrimp] Quinoa Salad
A zesty quinoa salad with prawns, cucumber, capsicum, red onion, green olives, feta, olive oil, lemon juice, flat-leaf parsley, salt and pepper.
Get recipe for Prawn [Shrimp] Quinoa Salad
Protein Quinoa Salad
A fulfilling combination of quinoa, lentils, almonds, green olives, baby spinach and avocado, flavoured with chilli flakes, salt and pepper, olive oil, maple syrup and apple cider vinegar.
Get recipe for Protein Quinoa Salad

Quinoa salad recipes with roast veggies

Pumpkin Quinoa Salad
A delicious combination of quinoa, pumpkin, chickpeas, peas, sundried tomatoes, lemon, pumpkin seeds and fresh herbs.
Get recipe for Pumpkin Quinoa Salad
Three green and white plates with pumpkin quinoa salad, sitting on a wooden kitchen bench with a sprinkling of pumpkin seeds, a few sprigs of parsley and pumpkin with a pieced cut out of it.
Roasted Cauliflower Quinoa Salad
A sweet and mildly spicy salad that combines roasted cauliflower, quinoa, orange and sultanas for a satisfying main meal or side salad.
Get recipe for Roasted Cauliflower Quinoa Salad
Roasted Cauliflower Quinoa Salad in large white serving dish on a kitchen bench with a cut orange and whole cauliflower beside it.
Roasted Vegetable Quinoa Salad
Quinoa tossed with roasted vegetables and topped with a sundried tomato vinaigrette, feta and pine nuts.
Get recipe for Roasted Vegetable Quinoa Salad
A quinoa salad on a white plate containing roast zucchini, capsicum and tomatoes, topped with a sundried tomato vinaigrette, feta and pine nuts.

Quinoa salad recipes with fruit

Mango Pineapple Quinoa Salad
A summer salad made with quinoa, capsicum, mango, pineapple, red onion and slivered almonds with a dressing of lime and orange juice, olive oil, honey, coriander, salt and pepper. Yum!
Get recipe for Mango Pineapple Quinoa Salad
Two plates and a serving bowl with mango pineapple quinoa salad on a white background.
Watermelon Quinoa Salad
A refreshing summer salad with quinoa, watermelon, pickled red onion, cucumber, fresh basil and mint, lime juice and zest drizzled with a balsamic glaze.
Get recipe for Watermelon Quinoa Salad
A serving bowl with a salad containing quinoa, watermelon, pickled red onion, cucumber, fresh basil and mint, lime juice and zest drizzled with a balsamic glaze.
Quinoa and Mandarin Salad
A combination of quinoa, mandarin, spinach, green onions, sliced almonds and pomegranate with an olive oil, lemon juice and maple syrup dressing.
Get recipe for Quinoa and Mandarin Salad
Curried Kale and Dried Fruit Quinoa Salad
A quinoa salad with chickpeas, kale, capsicum, celery, green onions, dried cherries (or cranberries), dried apricots, curry and cumin powder, coriander, honey and lemon juice.
Get recipe for Curried Kale and Dried Fruit Quinoa Salad
Quinoa salad with chickpeas, capsicum, kale and dried cranberries in bowl with wooden serving spoon.

Quinoa by cuisine or substituted into traditional salads

Greek Quinoa Salad
Combine classic Greek salad ingredients with quinoa for a satisfying salad. First, flavour quinoa with olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, crushed garlic, salt and pepper. Toss through cucumber, tomatoes, red onion slices, kalamata olives and crumbled feta.
Get recipe for Greek Quinoa Salad
Quinoa salad with cherry tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, olives and feta in a glass bowl.
Quinoa “Tabbouleh”
A variation on a popular Middle Eastern salad combining quinoa, cucumber, tomato with parsley, mint, green onions, lemon juice, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper.
Get recipe for Quinoa “Tabbouleh”
A white salad bowl with spoon and a quinoa salad of quinoa, cucumber, tomato with parsley, mint, green onions, lemon juice, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper.
Italian Quinoa Salad
Quinoa with chickpeas, pepperoni, salami and mozzarella balls combined with capsicum, cherry tomatoes, black olives, fresh basil and an Italian vinaigrette.
Get recipe for Italian Quinoa Salad
Quinoa with chickpeas, pepperoni, salami and mozzarella balls combined with capsicum, cherry tomatoes, black olives, fresh basil and an Italian vinaigrette on a white plate.
Asian Sesame Ginger Slaw with Quinoa
A fulfilling Asian flavoured slaw with quinoa, red cabbage, Chinese cabbage, kale, carrot, green onion, coriander, sesame seeds and cashews, with a sesame ginger vinaigrette of garlic, ginger, soy sauce, honey, rice vinegar and sesame oil.
Get recipe for Asian Sesame Ginger Slaw with Quinoa
Asian sesame ginger slaw with quinoa in a glass bowl.
Nutty Ginger Tamari Quinoa Salad
Crunchy toasted pistachios, almonds and sunflower seeds tossed with brown rice, red quinoa, fresh capsicum, snow peas, baby corn, edamame beans and peas drizzled with ginger tamari and sesame dressing.
Get recipe for Nutty Ginger Tamari Quinoa Salad
Quinoa and Black Bean Salad
A Mexican-inspired quinoa salad with black beans, corn, capsicum, avocado, cumin, smoked paprika, lime juice and coriander.
Get recipe for Quinoa and Black Bean Salad
Quinoa Beetroot Salad
A Middle Eastern-style salad with quinoa, grated raw beetroot, pistachios, raisins, mint and coriander with a dressing of lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, cumin powder, salt and pepper.
Get recipe for Quinoa Beetroot Salad

Have you tried any of these quinoa salad recipes?

I’d love to hear if you tried any of these recipes. Leave a comment below and share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #joyfuleatingmoment.

If you are looking to invent your own-style quinoa salad, you may like to try a grain bowl based on quinoa.

Enjoy!

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