The Freelancer’s Cookbook: Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

This is my inexpensive Mediterranean Quinoa Salad recipe that I fall back on a lot and it’s vegetarian-friendly too.

It’s a modified version of a recipe I learned from Nutritionist Karen Lamphere, MS, CN who is based in Edmonds, Washington. Her version featured more expensive ingredients including pine nuts and currants along with a dressing, that while delicious, had sugar and wine in it. In seeking a less sugary option, I replaced the dressing simply with olive oil, and sometimes various spices like garlic and cayenne when I felt inspired. I also added capers because I fancy them.

MEDITERRANEAN QUINOA SALAD

Serves 4
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 12-15 minutes
Cost per serving: $2.99

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water or sodium-free vegetable broth*
  • 1/4 cup pitted Kalamata olives, sliced
  • 1 avocado, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 1/4 cup capers
  • 1/2 cup basil, chopped
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

INSTRUCTIONS:

In a small saucepan bring quinoa and water to boil, reduce heat and cover for 12-15 minutes or until water is absorbed. Fluff with fork.

Add all remaining ingredients and toss. Can be served warm or chilled.

Variations include topping salad with garlic powder, cayenne or cajun spice and mixing in salad greens with chilled quinoa.

*Optional to split the 2 cups water into 1 cup water, 1 cup broth for a heartier flavor. Though the price per serving is when the quinoa is made with water. Adding broth increases the cost slightly:

Cost per serving splitting broth and water: $3.18
Cost per serving with broth only: $3.36

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