Greek Quinoa Salad
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This Greek Quinoa Salad is bursting with delicious Mediterranean flavors, healthy ingredients & plant based protein! It’s vegetarian, gluten free & easily made vegan! This recipe is easy to make, perfect for meal prep and can be served hot or cold.
I love creating quinoa salads. They’re filling enough to eat as a meal, but they’re also great as a side dish! They’re filled with plant based protein, healthy and gluten free.
I love incorporating the flavors of the Mediterranean into my recipes. Sun dried tomatoes, olive oil, garlic and fresh herbs all add a ton of flavor to this Mediterranean style quinoa salad.
Chickpeas and quinoa are both wonderful sources of plant based protein. This is a great recipe for vegetarians or vegans looking to add more protein to their diet. It’s easy to make this quinoa salad vegan by simply omitting the crumbled feta cheese on top.
I love to meal prep this salad at the beginning of the week, then eat it for lunches throughout the week. A little drizzle of lemon juice and a dash of salt and pepper really brightens up this salad after taking it out of the fridge! Trust me, after trying this salad once, you’ll be hooked!
Table of contents
- Quinoa – When you head to the grocery store, you’ll usually find at least 2 or 3 types of quinoa. There’s white quinoa, black quinoa and red quinoa. You’ll also find something called tri-color quinoa. Tri-color quinoa is a blend of all three types of quinoa, red, white and black. While each quinoa is slightly different in flavor, texture and nutrition, they’re all very similar. I like to use the tri-color blend. This gives me the combined nutrition and flavor from all the different types of quinoa, but any of the colors can be used in this recipe.
- Pro tip! I like to shop the bulk bins at my local grocery store to find great deals on quinoa. I stock up when it’s on sale because quinoa will stay good uncooked in the pantry for 3-5 years.
- Olive oil – a good quality extra-virgin olive oil is preferred for this recipe.
- Red onion – a yellow or red onion would work as well!
- Green bell pepper – red, yellow or orange bell peppers can also be used.
- Garlic – cloves of garlic, minced fresh, are always preferred over jarred garlic.
- Balsamic vinegar
- Lemon juice – I recommend fresh squeezed for the best flavor!
- Green onions
- Dried oregano – if using fresh oregano, be sure to double the amount used in the recipe.
- Black pepper
- Cherry tomatoes
- Chickpeas (also called garbanzo beans) – drained and rinsed from a can.
- Feta cheese
- Sun dried tomatoes
- Cook the quinoa. Add 1 cup of quinoa to a medium pot with 2 cups of water. Bring the quinoa and water to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, remove from the heat and set aside.
- Sauté veggies. Add olive oil to a large skillet on the stove over medium heat. Sauté diced bell pepper, red onion and garlic. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- Prepare the dressing. Combine olive oil, balsamic vinegar and lemon juice in a medium bowl. Add diced green onions, oregano, salt and pepper. Whisk all of the ingredients to make the dressing.
- Create the salad. Add the sautéd onion, pepper and garlic to the dressing with halved cherry tomatoes. Place the cooked quinoa in a large bowl. Add capers, chickpeas and diced zucchini.Add the tomatoes, sautéd veggies and vinaigrette dressing. Toss everything together. Top with sun dried tomatoes. Add crumbled feta cheese on top, if you’d like.
Frequently asked questions
- Is this salad healthy? This quinoa salad is a great part of a healthy diet. It contains 828 mg potassium and 15 grams of plant based protein per serving. It also contains 27% daily iron needs, 36% vitamin C needs and 9 grams of fiber per serving. Tomatoes, zucchini, peppers and onion add tons of vitamins and minerals to the salad. Most of the calories and fat in this recipe come from the olive oil. Luckily this fat is good fat. Olive oil is rich in healthy monounsaturated fat and nutrients.
- Is quinoa good for you? Quinoa is rich in fiber, antioxidants and all nine essential amino acids. As the base of this salad, it adds a ton of health benefits.
- Are chickpeas healthy? Chickpeas are a great source of fiber, plant based protein, iron, magnesium and potassium. With two cups of chickpeas in this recipe, this legume is a wonderfully healthy addition to this salad.
- Is this salad low carb? Quinoa and chickpeas are both high in carbohydrates. If you’re on a low carb diet, this salad is probably not for you. This quinoa salad contains 55 carbs per serving.
- Is it gluten free? Yes, this salad is naturally gluten free.
Tips and tricks
- This salad can be served hot or cold. If making this salad with just-cooked quinoa, the salad will be warm. You can totally eat it like that or place it in the refrigerator to chill before serving. It’s delicious either way. It really comes down to personal preference!
- Once prepared, this salad will keep in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. If you’re going to add the feta cheese on top, I recommend adding it right before serving. I also like to add a fresh drizzle of lemon juice and a shake of salt and pepper before serving. This brightens the salad up and makes the leftovers even more delicious!
- To add chicken to the salad, I recommend using this Greek Chicken Marinade recipe. It makes the best chicken to pair with this salad! Grill it, bake it or cook it on the stove, then slice it up and add it on top of the salad. Or dice it up and mix it into the salad.
What to serve it with
This Greek Quinoa Salad is perfect for lunches, picnics, parties or BBQs! Serve it as a side dish with these mouthwatering grilled main dishes!
- Grilled Mushroom Spinach Chicken – this simple Whole30 recipe is the perfect healthy main dish to serve with this quinoa salad!
- Chimichurri Shrimp Skewers – this easy recipe is so flavorful and will make you want to put chimichurri sauce on everything!
- Grilled Portobello Caprese Sandwich – this mushroom sandwich is the perfect vegetarian recipe to toss on the grill!
- Tomato Basil Chicken Skewers – the flavors in these skewers pair wonderfully with this Greek Quinoa Salad!
- Greek Meatballs – Greek salad + Greek Meatballs = a match made in feta heaven!
Don’t forget to pin this quinoa salad recipe for later! Made it and loved it? Be sure to rate it 5 stars in the recipe card below!
Greek Quinoa Salad
- 1 cup quinoa
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- ¼ cup red onion, minced
- ¼ cup green bell pepper, minced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- ¼ cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- 2 tbsp green onions, diced
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- ¼ tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- ¼ cup capers
- 15.5 oz can chickpeas, drained & rinsed
- ½ cup zucchini, diced
- ¼ cup feta cheese, crumbled
- ¼ cup sun dried tomatoes
- Add the quinoa and 2 cups of water to a medium pot on the stove over high heat.
- Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in small skillet on the stove over medium high heat, add the onion and bell pepper.
- Sauté for 2-3 minutes, then add the garlic and sauté for an additional minute.
- Remove from the heat and set aside.
- Combine the remaining ½ cup olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, green onions, oregano, salt and pepper in a medium bowl.
- Whisk well, then add the sauteed onion, bell pepper and garlic.
- Add the tomatoes to the dressing.
- Add the cooked quinoa, capers, chickpeas and zucchini to a large bowl.
- Add the tomatoes and vinaigrette dressing to the salad and toss well.
- Top with feta cheese and sun dried tomatoes.
- To make this quinoa salad vegan, simply omit the feta cheese.
- I use tri-color quinoa in this recipe, but any type of quinoa will work just fine.
- This quinoa salad will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
- If you want to add grilled chicken to this salad, check out this Greek chicken recipe. The flavor of the marinade pairs perfectly with this salad!
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