This strawberry quinoa salad is one of my favorite things to eat when the warmer weather arrives. It starts with a base of fresh greens, followed by plenty of fresh strawberries, mandarin oranges, a generous serving of quinoa, herbaceous mint, and a few crunchy almonds. Drizzle it with a simple balsamic vinaigrette for a healthy, protein-packed, delicious salad.
Quinoa For This Salad
I like to prepare the quinoa for this salad ahead of time and let it cool completely in the refrigerator. I typically cook a cup or two on Sunday and store it in the fridge to use throughout the week. When I'm ready to assemble the salad I just pull out what I need. By preparing it ahead of time, you won't have to put hot quinoa on your cool salad.
Any variation of white, red, or black cooked quinoa will work here, so feel free to use your favorite. Just be sure it's plain quinoa and doesn't contain any seasonings.
Sweetening The Dressing
I like to use agave syrup to make the balsamic vinaigrette that tops this salad, but honey will work here too. If you're watching your sugar intake, you can also omit the sweetener altogether. I have some delicious raspberry balsamic vinegar that also pairs amazingly with this just as-is, without the oil or sweetener (other options are here and here).
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, this salad is vegan! It contains no animal products, including cheese.
Yes, honey works great.
Quinoa is rich with antioxidants and fiber that help with cholesterol and blood sugar levels, as well as help prevent damage to your heart and organs. It's full of anti-inflammatory phytochemicals and also helps you feel full longer!
Yes, quinoa is gluten free. However, it may not be safe for everyone that has celiac disease. You can read more here.
Strawberry Salad With Quinoa and Mint
For The Salad
- 4 cups spring mix
- 8 large strawberries hulled and sliced
- 6 mint leaves chopped
- ⅔ cup quinoa cooked
- ¼ cup chopped or sliced almonds
Make The Salad
- Evenly divide your ingredients between two large bowls, and drizzle with vegan balsamic vinaigrette. Serve immediately with balsamic vinaigrette.
Make The Dressing
- Whisk together all of the ingredients and pour evenly over each salad. Store leftovers in the refrigerator, and bring it to room temperature before serving. Be sure to whisk or shake this dressing before using.