Delicious vegan Quinoa salad
high in plant based protein
By: Vegan Agility Team Last updated: December 5, 2020
This delicious vegan quinoa salad loaded with chickpeas and a whole host of tasty vegetables is most definitely a Vegan Agility favorite thanks to the incredible flavors and high plant-based protein content. It pleases your tastebuds, stomach, and muscles, all at the same time. What more could you ask for?
Is quinoa vegan?
With so much hype around quinoa but not everyone knowing what this unique sounding food is, we get a lot of readers asking is quinoa vegan? Many may think quinoa is a grain due to wide uses that share similarity with rice, but quinoa is actually a seed of the Amaranthaceae family. Quinoas plant origin makes it 100% vegan, and its high nutrient content makes it one of the best plant foods for vegans and vegetarians to have stocked up in their kitchen.
Quinoa Nutrients and Benefits
Nutrition per 1 cup serving:
Macronutrients: Fat 3.6g, Carbohydrates 39.4g, Protein 8.1g
Vitamins: Vitamin B9 (folate) 77.7mcg – 19% DV, Vitamin E 0.6mg 4% DV, Vitamin K 6.6μg 5% DV
Minerals: Zinc 2mg – 18% DV, Iron 2.8mg – 15% DV, Magnesium 118.4mg – 28% DV
Health Benefits of quinoa in a vegan salad
- Quinoa is one of the most fantastic plant foods to add to any vegan salad helping to boost the amount of protein in your vegan salad as well as healthy carbohydrates and fiber.
- High in fiber, providing 21% of your daily needs with every one cup of cooked quinoa.
- For every cup of cooked quinoa, you get 8.1 grams of protein per providing around 16% of your minimum daily protein needs and 21% of your daily fiber needs.
- Quinoa is also high in healthy plant compounds and antioxidants, particularly kaempferol and quercetin, which research shows have anti-inflammatory properties as well as showing attributes that may help to fight off certain cancers.
What to serve with vegan quinoa salad?
Finding the right foods to compliment a delicious quinoa salad can be the icing on the cake, leaving your stomach pleasantly satisfied and your tastebuds thanking you for the experience.
Our favorite vegan sides to complement a vegan quinoa salad are:
- vegan hummus – a deliciously cool dip compliments a salad amazingly well
- vegan falafel – falafel works perfectly with any vegan salad, especially when cooked fresh at home
- vegan wings – tasty vegan wings can be an incredible way to boost your protein intake with this quinoa salad recipe. Excellent for vegans or vegetarians trying to stay lean or build muscle mass
Additional ingredients to boost this vegan salad with protein
Nutrition per 1 cup:
- Macronutrients: Fat 4.2g, Carbohydrates 45g, Protein 14.5g
- Vitamins: Vitamin C 2.1mg 2% DV, Vitamin E 0.6mg 4% DV, Vitamin K 6.6μg 5% DV
- Minerals: Zinc 2.5mg – 23% DV, Iron 4.7mg – 26% DV, Magnesium 78.7mg – 19% DV
Health Benefits of chickpeas
- Chickpeas are one of the most magnificent salad ingredients to boost protein levels in a delicious vegan salad.
- Chickpeas provide 14.5 grams of protein per cup, helping you 20% of your protein RDA needs while increasing your intake of beneficial amino acids.
- Recent studies indicate that chickpeas may be great for lowering the risk of obesity and helping to maintain healthy body weight, which is likely due to the high amount of fiber and protein.
- Chickpeas are also a phenomenal source of magnesium, iron, and zinc, which are all essential nutrients needed on a vegan diet.
How to make this vegan quinoa salad recipe?
Vegan quinoa salad
- 1 cup quinoa dry – to be cooked
- 1 cup chickpeas cooked or canned and rinsed
- 1 cup baby spinach can be swapped for kale or your favorite salad leaves
- 1/2 cup chives fresh and diced
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
- 1/2 red onion diced
- 1/4 cup flat leaf parsley chopped
- 4 mint leaves chopped
- 1/4 cup green olives seedless and sliced
- 1.5 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 2 tbsp lemon juice freshly squeezed (adjust to your liking)
- Medium sized pot
- Salad bowl
- Chopping board
- Take a sufficient sized pot and add the rinsed quinoa. Add double the amount of water to the amount of quinoa into the pot to prepare for cooking. Add some fine sea salt to give the quinoa some flavor while boiling. Ensure the pot has a lid on and allow the water to heat up
- Once the water begins to boil, lower the flame to its lowest setting and let the quinoa gently simmer for about 10-12 mins depending on the size of your pot. Check the pot every now and again to see whether the water has been completely absorbed.
- Once the water is fully absorbed switch off the flame and allow the quinoa to cool.
- Vegan Agility Tip For faster cooling remove the quinoa from the hot pot and allow to cool in a ceramic dish.
- Add all the prepared salad ingredients to the bowl
- Once the quinoa has cooled add to it to the salad
- Squeeze on the lemon, sprinkle on the salt and pepper.
- Add the balsamic vinegar and olive oil and mix the salad till the ingredients are evenly spread.
- Serve and enjoy with some vegan hummus or falafel.
The nutritional information provided is approximate and can vary depending on your ingredients and tools.
Do you want more deliciously healthy vegan salad recipes?
Why not try out some of our alternative vegan salads that use a blend of different plant-based foods high in essential nutrients to achieve a delicious yet healthy result. These recipes allow you to get a bit creative with your salads while adding extra nutritional benefits that enhance the end result in both nutrients and flavor.