Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

My mind is craving all things soup, chili, stews and cozy fall foods. However, my body is still craving fresh summer fruits and veggies. I feel conflicted and torn.  I want to want snuggle up in a big bowl of chili and cornbread, but not on an 80-degree day. I do not care if it is October or not I just can’t. I am actually not mad at all about the warm fall so far. I not a fan at all of the cold, so the longer warmth lingers around here the longer I can put off pulling out the bulky winter coat. I am a big fan of that!

I have been craving cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onions recently. Actually since my sweet college roomie and her husband came and stayed a weekend with us not too long ago.  She talked about how she was eating them as a salad every day and the craving monster hit my mind and tummy hard. Like that’s all I want to eat, which is weird because it wasn’t long ago I hated all three of those veggies. Now all I want is for them to be tossed lightly in balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper. It is delicious, promise, you have to try it. Taste buds change, I can’t explain it but I am glad they do.

So thank you to my roomie for this salad inspiration. I thought I would take those basic flavors and turn it up a notch to turn it into a more hearty side or salad.

It takes about 30 minutes to make (thanks to roasting the chickpeas–it’s a must, but you can totally just add a drained can and cut down on prep time). While those are roasting, make quinoa according to package directions.  Diced your cucumber and onion. Add to a bowl along with the sun-dried tomatoes, olives, and feta. Make the simple lemon dressing (which I only ended up using about half of). Add in quinoa and chickpeas once finished, toss, add dressing, toss and done!

You can serve this as a side, eat as a mid-day snack or add on top of a bed of spinach with some turkey meatballs for dinner (this may or may not be what I planned for dinner tonight). Keep covered in the refrigerator for 3-4 days and enjoy some meal prep work being finished.

It is healthy, light and still savoring all of the flavors of summer with a Mediterranean twist. Not to worry,  I have plenty of cozy and hearty meals coming your way, just not until the weather cools a little. Enjoy!

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad
Author: 
Recipe type: Salad
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
 
All the flavors of summer packed into a Mediterranean style dish. Enjoy this alone or on top of a salad!
Ingredients
  • 1 Cup Quinoa, uncooked
  • ½ Cup Red Onion, diced
  • ½ Cup Cucumber, diced
  • 3oz Sundried Tomatoes
  • 4oz can Slice Black Olives
  • 3oz Feta
  • 15oz can Chickpeas, roasted (see recipe link above)
  • Dressing:
  • ¼ Cup EVOO
  • ¼ Cup Lemon Juice
  • ¼ Teaspoon Salt
  • ¼ Teaspoon Pepper
  • ½ Teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • I Tablespoon fresh Parsley, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 Teaspoon Honey
Instructions
  1. Roast Chickpeas according to the recipe (linked in the post).
  2. Cook quinoa according to package directions.
  3. In a large bowl add in diced red onion and cucumber. Then sundried tomatoes and a can of sliced black olives. Set aside
  4. To make the dressing, add all dressing ingredients into a mason jar. Screw lid on tightly and shake until all combined.
  5. Add in cooked quinoa and roasted chickpeas to the large bowl. Pour over about ½ of the dressing and toss until well combined. Add feta on top and enjoy!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: ½ cup Calories: 196 Fat: 5.3 Carbohydrates: 30.1 Protein: 8.4

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