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Fresh Herb Quinoa Salad

Quinoa, chickpeas, juicy cherry tomatoes, and summer squash is topped with olive oil, fresh squeezed lemon juice, and fresh herbs. This 20 minute vegan dish is light, flavorful, and fresh!

Quinoa salad is plated in a white bowl with a spoon to show texture and colors.

Easy Vegan Quinoa Salad

I know the adult struggle so well. You’re staring at your fridge with a blank stare, kids screaming in the background, blocking your thoughts. Dinner seems so daunting. What can you whip together within minutes that doesn’t require much time, thought, or energy? Smoky Chickpea and Kale Rice Bowls, Easy Korean Beef Bowl, or Mediterranean Quinoa Salad are all great options, but this one….

Quinoa salad was the first thing to come to mind when I was having one of those nights. It only takes 15 minutes to cook and is packed with nutrition like protein, fat, and fiber. Quinoa makes for a great low car, high protein rice substitute and tastes great with any dish.

Tossing some quinoa into a salad with chickpeas, tomatoes, and summer squash, then topping with lemon juice, olive oil and fresh herbs created an incredibly fresh dish. In the months of winter, these easy to find quinoa salad ingredients will brighten up anyone’s day and remind you of warm summer days.

Quinoa salad ingredients include summer squash, tomatoes, chickpeas, fresh herbs, and quinoa.

Ingredients to make Herb and Lemon Quinoa Salad

  • Quinoa– known as the “ancient grain,” quinoa is high in protein and is a healthy gluten free option.
  • Chickpeas- also high in protein, these are a great vegan alternative to meat.
  • Summer squash- when you think of summer eats, summer squash comes to mind. Hello, happy, fresh dish!
  • Cherry tomatoes- these juicy, flavorful little tomatoes add an extra fresh and delicious touch to this meal.
  • Raw garlic- every dish that’s worth eating begins with garlic. Period.
  • Lemon juice- slice a lemon in half and squeeze both halves straight into the dish. It can’t get any more fresh and simple!
  • Fresh herbs- basil and mint are closely related in the plant family, so it’s no surprise they mesh well in this meal.
  • Olive oil- a bold tasting olive oil signifies it’s authenticity and freshness, but it also adds a deep flavor that is undeniably good.
  • Salt & pepper- the celebrity couple of every dish.
quinoa salad is in the pot and is topped with a olive oil, lemon juice and herb mixture.

Tips to make this Vegan Quinoa Salad

Here are a few ways to make this dinner quicker and easier- although it only takes 20 minutes TOPS to throw together!

  • Use precooked or frozen quinoa. My mom used to cook and freeze quinoa and rice into small individual servings, which I now find useful since my time is always limited.
  • Blend the lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, and herbs. Not everyone is good with knife work. If using a knife to finely chop the herbs and garlic seems like a task in itself, toss it into a blender and give it a quick pulse. You want the herbs to be finely chopped but not pureed.
  • Use canned chickpeas. I love using canned beans because it’s just too easy to open a can, give them a rinse, and toss them into a dish.

How to make this easy Quinoa Salad

  1. Cook the quinoa. Just like rice, you will use double the amount of water to the amount of quinoa to cook it. If you are cooking 1 cup of quinoa, you will use 2 cups of water.
  2. Dice the produce. Halve the cherry tomatoes and cut the summer squash into bite sized pieces.
  3. Prepare the chickpeas. Drain and rinse the chickpeas in a strainer and set them to the side.
  4. Make the dressing. In a small blender, combine the garlic, basil, mint, lemon juice and olive oil. Pulse the blender until the herbs and garlic are finely chopped.
  5. Add the summer squash to the quinoa in the last 5 minutes of cooking. Adding the summer squash to the pot for the last few minutes of cooking will allow the squash to become slightly tender, but still hold it’s delicious crunch.
  6. Toss everything into one bowl. Add the quinoa, summer squash, tomatoes, chickpeas, and the dressing into one bowl and give it a good mix. Serve and mangia!
Quinoa salad is made in one pot with zucchini, tomatoes, quinoa and a couple of herbs.

Storing & Reheating

How long does quinoa keep in the fridge for?

Quinoa salad can be store for up to a week in the fridge. Place the quinoa salad in an air tight container (preferably glass) and label with the date.

Can you freeze quinoa?

You can certainly cook quinoa and freeze it to help save time. Quinoa can be stored in airtight glass containers in the freezer for up to 8 months.

How to reheat quinoa salad?

Frozen quinoa can be heated up in the microwave. Cooking time will vary upon the size of the container. For small containers, start with two minutes in the microwave.

You can reheat your quinoa salad in the oven if you prefer it warm. Heat your oven to 350° and place it in the oven for 10 minutes. Quinoa salad does not need to be reheated and tastes absolutely delicious as a cold meal.

Quinoa salad is plated in a white bowl with a side of lemons and more fresh basil for added color and flavor.

What goes with quinoa salad?

Be sure to follow me on Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram to stay in touch! I love to see your creations! Tag me at #SeaSaltSavorings to show me what you’ve made!

Quinoa salad is plated in a white bowl with a side of lemons and more fresh basil for added color and flavor.

Quinoa Salad

Sea Salt Savorings
Quinoa, chickpeas, juicy cherry tomatoes, and summer squash is topped with olive oil, fresh squeezed lemon juice, and fresh herbs. This 20 minute vegan dish is light, flavorful, and fresh!
4.98 from 36 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Course Appetizer, Main Course, Salad
Cuisine American, Mediterranean
Servings 6

Equipment

  • 1 medium sized pot with lid
  • large serving bowl

Ingredients
  

  • 1 1/2 cup quinoa
  • 1 15 oz can of chickpeas
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
  • 1 medium sized summer squash diced into bite sized pieces

For the dressing

  • 3 TBS olive oil
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 3 TBS basil
  • 2 TBS mint
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Instructions
 

  • In a medium pot, boil 3 cups of water. Once the water is rapidly boiling, add the quinoa. Stir the quinoa, then cover the pot with the lid and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook the quinoa for about then minutes.
  • Dice the zucchini into bite sized pieces. Halve the cherry tomatoes and place to the side. Drain and rise the chickpeas. In the last 5 minutes of the quinoa cooking, place zucchini in the pot, then place the lid back on.
  • Place olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, basil, and mint in the blender. Blend until the herbs are finely chopped.
  • When the quinoa is done cooking (15 minutes total), remove from the stove. Plate in a large bowl. Add the tomatoes, chickpeas, and the dressing. Stir to combine. Top with a pinch of salt, red pepper flakes, more herbs, or lemon wedges. Mangia!

Nutrition values are estimates, for exact values consult a nutritionist.

Tried this recipe?Mention @seasaltsavorings or tag us #seasaltsavorings!

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Recipe Rating




45 Comments

  1. Pam Greer says:

    5 stars
    This is a favorite salad of ours! We use it as a side dish and also as an easy light lunch! The flavors are perfect and we love how healthy it is!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      I love that your whole family loves it! MY family is a huge fan too, and it’s esp easy for us mommas who are cramped for time to eat it cold!

  2. 5 stars
    Sherry! This looks so delicious — I’ve got all the ingredients to make this for lunch today!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      YAY! so excited for you to be blasted with flavor!

  3. 5 stars
    This recipe was great. Everyone in my family loved it and it was really easy to make too.

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      SCORE! Gotta love an easy and well loved recipe!

  4. 5 stars
    This salad looks so light and fresh, yum!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Who knew this much flavor was just 20 minutes away?!

  5. Carrie Robinson says:

    4 stars
    I have quinoa salad almost every day for my lunch. Going to add this one to the rotation asap! πŸ™‚

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Yay! Quinoa salad is such a great lunch choice!

  6. 5 stars
    I really love quinoa, and this recipe full of veggies is just the thing to help me with my New Year’s resolution to eat more vegetables. Gotta make it soon! Thanks!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      YES! I love your New Years resolution! I love veggie stuffing my meals! Cheers to eating veggies!

  7. 5 stars
    This quinoa salad is so fresh and full of flavors. A great side dish or even for a light lunch.

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      This was my cold lunch for about three days, and I enjoyed it every one of those days!

  8. 5 stars
    Love quinoa salad with fresh herbs but I especially love the addition of chickpeas and squash – so flavorful! Yum πŸ™‚

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      I am so glad you enjoyed this recipe!

  9. Krissy Allori says:

    5 stars
    This salad is bursting with flavor that makes your tastes buds dance. It is one that I will save and take to many potlucks to come.

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Yay, cheers to clean eating and crowd pleasing!

  10. 5 stars
    Quinoa is a classic salad ingredient. Your salad looks really delicious and healthy.

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Your totally right, quinoa is a great salad ingredient!

  11. 5 stars
    What a refreshing and colorful salad. And they can be frozen and easily reheat in the future, which means, this recipe is going to my meal-prep list. πŸ™‚

  12. 5 stars
    So much flavor in thus quinoa salad! I loved it so much.

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      So flavorful, and SO satisfying! I’m so happy you enjoyed this recipe!

  13. 5 stars
    Love all the colors in this salad that are also indicators of all the flavors here!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      PACKED with flavors! You’ve got a good eye πŸ˜‰

  14. 5 stars
    So amazing! Love the colours and flavours in this dish! Thanks for sharing!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      I’m so glad you enjoyed this cheerful dish!

  15. Kushigalu says:

    5 stars
    How flavorful and delicious this salad is. I love quuinoa. A must try !

  16. 5 stars
    Loved this recipe! It really had a great flavor and was so easy. Will definitely make again!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      So glad you enjoyed this recipe, thank you!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      High five for healthy eating!

  17. 5 stars
    What a delicious looking salad! I love it, it has all my favors included.. I cant wait to try this out!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Cheers to easy recipes and healthy eating!

  18. 5 stars
    Quinoa is one of those dishes that is so easy to make! Love the flavors you added to this salad! Taste so good!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      Fresh and healthy, just how I like it!

  19. 5 stars
    So light and refreshing, this might just get me to like quinoa again!

    1. sherry brubaker says:

      AH! I sure hope so, it’s such an easy nutrient dense meal!