Summer Quinoa Salad

May 30 2013 by
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Summer Quinoa Salad

June 21st might technically be the official start of summer but everyone knows Memorial Day is the real kick off day.  As far as I’m concerned summer has started and I’ve been enjoying all the yummy produce it has to offer.  I’ve been living off cherries, watermelon, peaches and nectarines for the past few weeks and I’m not looking back!  This salad is the perfect combo of summer flavors all wrapped up in one amazing dish.  I used nectarines for both the salad and dressing because I had them on hand but peaches would be delicious too!  I serve the salad at room temperature but you can easily serve it cold on hot summer days.  Enjoy!



For the salad:

  • 1/2 cup quinoa
  • 1 cup water
  • 8-10 stalks asparagus, woody ends trimmed
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion
  • 1 peach or nectarine, diced
  • 1/3 cup roasted, unsalted almonds

For the dressing:

  • 2 tbsp coconut nectar
  • 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 a peach or nectarine (about 3-4 tbsp pureed fruit)
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp dried parsley or 3 tbsp fresh parsley
  • sea salt and black pepper to taste


  1. Place the quinoa and water into a medium sauce pan and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to low, cover and let simmer for 15 minutes.  Remove from heat, fluff with a fork and transfer to a mixing bowl.
  2. While the quinoa is cooking, preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Lay the asparagus on a baking sheet, drizzle with oil and sprinkle with sea salt.
  3. Place in the oven and roast for about 10 minutes or until the asparagus is bright green and tender.  Let cool, cut into 1 inch pieces and place in the mixing bowl along with the quinoa.
  4. Add the diced onion, fruit and almonds to the bowl and stir to combine.
  5. In a blender add all the ingredients for the dressing.  Process until smooth and drizzle your desired amount over the salad.
  6. Give everything a stir and serve at room temperature or place in the fridge for 15 minutes to serve cold.


Serves 2 as an entree.


Leftover dressing can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.  The salad is best when served right away.  If you plan to store the leftovers it’s best to do so without the dressing added.

On really hot days that you don’t want to use your oven you can grill the asparagus outdoors on your grill.


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