- Quinoa is an amino-acid rich seed
- It is a relative of spinach and swiss chard
- It includes all nine essential amino acids
- It is a good source of magnesium, iron, copper, and phosphorus
- It is gluten free
Basically, quinoa is extremely healthy and has a lot of health benefits. I am using it in my cooking as a substitute for rice or Cous Cous, but in my reading I found it is commonly used in soups. Please share with me your favorite way to use quinoa, as this is all new to me!
I was browsing some of my favorite food blogs for ideas to use my quinoa and found this recipe for Black Bean and Bell Pepper Cous Cous Salad on Beantown Baker. I loved how Jen's salad uses so many of hubby and my favorite flavors: corn, black beans, cilantro, lime. Although Jen's salad uses Cous Cous, I substituted quinoa and added fresh sliced avocado on top. This salad was so filling and flavorsome. I loved the taste of all the veggies with the zesty citrus dressing. The quinoa added a nutty, grainy taste and was a perfect addition. We ate it chilled for two days. It will be hard to find a more tasty use of quinoa!
Southwestern Quinoa Salad
Adapted from Beantown Baker
Makes 8 Servings
1 cup cooked quinoa
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
8 green onions, chopped
1 red bell pepper, seeded
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (my store was out so I used cilantro in a tube - great substitute)
1 cup corn (I used frozen corn kernels, thawed)
2 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained
Salt and Pepper to taste
Cook 1 cup of quinoa according to directions and set aside. In a large bowl whisk together the olive oil, lime juice, vinegar and cumin.
Add green onions, red bell pepper, cilantro, corn, and beans and toss to coat.
Fluff the quinoa and break up any chunks. Add the quinoa to the bowl with the veggies and mix well. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve.