This quinoa salad has “Mason Jar Lunch Recipes” written all over it. It’s a quick and simple meal that can be ready in minutes and will stay fresh in the fridge through the week – easily reinvented into a number of grab-and-go lunches. It also made a delicious side accompaniment to some pesto-baked salmon for a healthy and satisfying weeknight dinner.
Here’s the game plan: While the quinoa is cooking, prepare the dressing and cut the vegetables. After the quinoa has cooled, toss it all together. But here’s the catch – if you are planning on eating the salad for lunch tomorrow, keep the arugula and sunflower seeds separate so the delicate leaves don’t become mush.
To prep your on-the-go, wellness meal, use a 2-cup, wide-mouthed Ball jar (16 oz). Place 1 cup of quinoa salad at the base of the jar, then fill the remainder of the jar with arugula. Top with a tablespoon of sunflower seeds, lemon wedge, and a pinch of salt. The arugula should stay fresh and crisp until lunch time!
If you are in the mood for something hardier, sardines packed in olive oil and tossed with a squeeze of lemon and pinch of salt make an excellent accompaniment to this salad. If sardines aren’t your thing, shredded chicken from last night’s leftovers would also pair quite well.
Spring Quinoa Tabouli Salad with Arugula
Yield: 4 servings
1 cup quinoa, rinsed well and drained
1 ¾ cups water
½ teaspoon salt, divided
3 tablespoons olive oil
½ teaspoon lemon zest
¼ cup lemon juice
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup parsley, minced
½ cup mint, minced
1 bunch radishes, sliced
1 bunch scallions, cut into thin rounds
1 cucumber, small diced
Sunflower seeds, toasted
- Bring the quinoa, water, and ¼ teaspoon salt to a boil in a small pot, reduce to simmer, and cook covered for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let rest for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and spread over a baking sheet or plate to cool.
- Whisk together the olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, and the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt.
- In a large bowl, combine the cooled quinoa, dressing, parsley, mint, radishes, scallions, and cucumber.
- To serve, toss the arugula with a pinch of salt, drizzle of olive oil, and squeeze of lemon. Add the quinoa tabouli and top with toasted sunflower seeds.