Good morning! Today I want to share a new salad that doesn’t suck with you guys. This one is so, so simple to throw together. It was a go to lunch in my home over the summer because it requires no oven use, and we’ve kept it in our rotation ever since.
Simple Broccoli and Bell Pepper Quinoa Salad
Serves 4 as a main dish or 6 as a side
For the salad:
- 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
- 2 small-medium heads of broccoli, chopped
- 2 bell peppers, de-seeded and chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds or other crunch of choice
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Crumbled feta, optional
For the dressing:
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup lemon juice (juice from 1 lemon)
- 1 tbsp raw honey or maple syrup
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp dijon mustard
- 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
- Salt and pepper, to taste
Rinse the quinoa in a fine mesh strainer. Place the 1/2 cup of uncooked quinoa in a medium size pan with 1 cup of water, and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low, cover with a lid, and simmer until all the water is absorbed. In a large bowl, combine the cooked quinoa, chopped broccoli, chopped bell peppers, chopped basil, and slivered almonds. In a separate small bowl, whisk together all the dressing ingredients. Pour the dressing over the salad, and mix well. Season with some extra salt and pepper, to taste. Top with crumbled feta if using.
The dressing is actually the star of the show in this dish, so don’t skip it! One of the things I’ve been coaching my Master Your Meal Prep crew this fall on is to not automatically feel overwhelmed if a recipe looks like it has a long ingredient list, especially recipes for salads with homemade dressings. Often times the recipe will not be as complicated as you might think at first glance. For example, in this quinoa dish, there are seven ingredients that make up a homemade dressing, but they are all pantry staples and should take approximately 60 seconds to whisk all together. That’s an extra minute to give the dish a better flavor profile and make it more enjoyable to eat than not using a dressing on the salad and having it taste meh and boring and bland. I’d rather use more seasonings upfront so I’m left more satisfied with the taste of my food in the long run. After all, a girl’s gotta like how she eats!
If you have other veggies or leftover herbs lying around, throw them in! That’s a great way to use up leftovers lying around. Just because the recipe doesn’t call for it doesn’t mean you can’t add em! You could also prep the quinoa and chop the veggies ahead of time and then assemble everything as you go during the week.
Love the crunch that the veggies and almonds add to this dish! Give it a try and let me know what you think. Make sure to post any pics on social media with #saladsthatdontsuck and tag me. 🙂
For more simple, delicious, and nutritious salad recipes, make sure to grab your copy of my FREE Salads That Don’t Suck guide! It includes tips for making your salads taste better so you’ll actually WANT to eat them, some nutritional considerations, and a recipe index for sixteen of my favorite salad related recipes. Enjoy!