The combination of quinoa and beans in this salad makes it an ideal centerpiece for a warm weather meal. Enlivened with small tomatoes, bell pepper, olives, and dill, the flavor twist in this salad is a simple salsa dressing. This is ideal served with a cold soup, though for lunch, it can stand on its own. Photos by Hannah Kaminsky.
Quinoa and Red Bean Salad with Crisp Vegetables
- ¾ cup quinoa any color, or a combination, rinsed in a fine sieve
- 1 cup halved yellow or red cherry tomatoes
- ½ cup peeled diced turnip or daikon radish
- ½ medium orange or yellow bell pepper diced
- 8 baby carrots quartered lengthwise
- ⅓ cup chopped black olives
- 1 ½ to 2 cups cooked or one 15- to 16- ounce can small red beans drained and rinsed
- 2 to 3 tablespoons minced fresh dill
- ½ cup salsa your favorite variety
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Combine the quinoa with 1 ½ cups water in a small saucepan and bring to a rapid simmer, then lower the heat. Cover and simmer gently for 15 minutes, or until the water is absorbed. Transfer the quinoa to a wide bowl or casserole dish so that it can cool quickly.
- Meanwhile, place the tomatoes, turnip, pepper, carrots, and olives in a serving bowl.
- When the quinoa is just warm, add it to the vegetables along with the beans, dill to taste, salsa, and olive oil; toss together. Season with salt and pepper.
- Let stand at room temperature for 15 to 30 minutes to allow the flavors to marry if time allows, then serve.
- Here are more quinoa recipes.