Apple Avocado Quinoa Salad
EVENT: A- Z RECIPE CHALLENGE
THEME : AN INGREDIENT BEGINNING WITH THE LETTER Q
Apple Avocado Quinoa Salad
I love how filling and delicious quinoa salads are and apple avocado quinoa salad is no less. The charming thing about quinoa is that it can be paired with practically any ingredient to make a filling, healthy and enjoyable dish. For the Apple Avocado Quinoa Salad, it was not a planned salad at all. I knew that I wanted to make a quinoa salad but the ingredients just sort of popped up when I opened my fridge. I am so glad that it turned really well.
What is Quinoa?
Quinoa(pronounced as Keen -Wah) is not a grain but is classed as a pseudo cereal. It actually belongs to the same family as amaranth.The seeds of the flowering plant Chenopodium Quinoa plant are edible. It’s a fantastic replacement for rice. Generally the seeds are white but these days it common to find a mixture of red, white and black quinoa, commonly called the tricolor or rainbow quinoa.
The first time I tasted quinoa was at my son’s home. Just before he left for work, he asked me to prepare a quinoa salad for dinner! Had heard of quinoa but had not seen it, tasted it and absolutely had no idea how to cook it. Thankfully, he had left the quinoa packet on the kitchen counter. Cooking part became simple because of the instructions on the packet. What salad to make, well I thought this just looks like couscous so any ingredient will work well. While the quinoa was cooking I had my eyes on it like a hawk, didn’t want it to burn, stick or become soggy. Exciting moment when the quinoa turned out good and more exhilarating when the salad was appreciated. I made a Nectarine and French Bean Quinoa Salad.
Health Benefits of Quinoa
- Rich in Protein, Quinoa is ideal for vegetarians as a source of protein. 1 cup of cooked protein contain 8 grams of protein.
- Gluten Free
- High in Fiber, making it very good for the digestive system.
- Quinoa is a complex carbohydrate which makes it longer to digest and as a result keeps on full for a longer time.
Cooking quinoa is pretty easy. Quinoa is coated with a naturally bitter coating called saponin. Therefore, its important to rinse quinoa well. Put it in a sieve and under running water rub it gently in your hand so that the coating comes off.
To cook Quinoa, for 1 cup quinoa you need 2 cups of water. Place both in a an and allow it to simmer for 15 minutes. For a more fluffier quinoa you can add ¼ cup more of water.
After the quinoa is cooked, gently fluff it up using a fork.
Some More Quinoa Dishes:
- Try the traditional Gujarati lapsi by replacing broken wheat with quinoa – Quinoa Lapsi
- Roasted Vegetables with Quinoa and Cashew Hummus – a delicious and fun lunch or dinner meal.
- A protein rich dish Garlicky Broccoli Quinoa
- Nectarine And French Bean Quinoa Salad – a delicious summer salad
- Chickpea Quinoa Burgers – a protein rich burger for vegetarians
- Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad – for parsley lovers
- Quinoa Tangerine Salad – another refreshing summer salad
- If you’re looking for an ultra protein rich breakfast option, then check out Vidya’s Quinoa Adai Dosa. I know I’m going to try it out soon.
- Poonam’s Mexican One Pot Quinoa is a filling and delicious meal option with Mexican flavors.
- Shobha’s gluten free Quinoa And Egg Muffins are what I’d love to have as a light dinner option with some salad on the side.
A bit about the group
A – Z Recipe Challenge group started by fellow bloggers Vidya and Jolly, is themed based. This month we have to use any ingredient whose English name begins with Q. Besides quail eggs, the only other ingredient beginning with Q is Quinoa. Using quail eggs was a tempting option but because of the Adhik Maas (Hindu Calendar Leap Month), eggs, meat, fish are not generally allowed. Since I’m fasting for the whole month, Quinoa was a much better option.
Vidya blogs at Masala Chilli, a blog full of traditional Tamil recipes. Jolly’s blog Homemade Recipes is at the opposite end to Vida’s, in the sense that her blog is where you’ll find some lip smacking Punjabi food recipes.
Ingredients required for Apple Avocado Quinoa Salad:
- Apple – I prefer using the sweetish red apples for this salad
- Avocado – a small ripe avocado
- Pomegranate Arils – optional, I had some so added to the salad
- Quinoa – cooked
- Walnuts – lightly roasted and chopped
- Mint – fresh mint leaves. However add any herbs of your choice.
- Lemon Juice – as I’ve not used any other salad dressing
- Salt – I’ve used Himalayan Rock Salt, but feel free to use any salt of your preference
- Pepper Powder – best to use freshly ground
Is this Salad ideal for Ekadashi/ Navratri Fasting?
Yes it is. I’ve used ingredients that are allowed during fasting. This salad is makes a change from the usual samo or sabudana khichdi. The quinoa and avocado combination kept away hunger pangs for most of the day. In fact I enjoy it as a main meal. I would have loved to add paneer but didn’t have any.
Is Apple Avocado Quinoa Salad limited to fasting days?
Not at all, when I’m not fasting I like to add chopped onion, cooked beans and corn too. Can also drizzle a salad dressing of your choice.
- Gluten Free
- Satvik as it has no onion or garlic
- Enjoy it for Fasting days like Ekadashi, Navratri, basically its a farali dish.
APPLE AVOCADO QUINOA SALAD
- 1 medium apple
- 1 small avocado
- ½ cup quinoa
- 1 -1¼ cups water
- ¼ cup pomegranate arils
- 8-10 walnuts lightly roasted
- 12 mint leaves fresh
- 2 -3 tbsp lemon juice
- ¼ -½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp pepper powder
- Put quinoa in a sieve and wash it under running water, rubbing it gently with your hand to remove the coating.
- Transfer the quinoa in a saucepan. Add 1-1¼ cups of water.
- Put the pan over low to medium heat and cover it.
- Allow the quinoa to cook for 15 minutes till its done.
- Fluff it up with a fork and keep it on the side to cool.
- Wash, core and slice the apple. Drizzle a bit of the lemon juice over it to prevent it from turning brown.
- Peel, remove the stone and chop the avocado into cubes. Drizzle lemon juice over it and mix gently.
- Add the avocado to the apple.
- Chop mint leaves roughly and add to the mixture.
- Chop walnuts and add.
- Add the pomegranate arils, salt, pepper and cooked quinoa.
- Mix gently and serve.
- Add fresh herbs of your choice.
- I've used tricolor quinoa but you can use any that is available.
- Add some honey if you wish.
- Best to chop both apple and avocado just before serving as they tend to turn brown.
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October 9, 2020 at 9:15 pm
I love the salad recipe and the fact that it can be consumed for fasting! I love crunchy fruits like apples and pears in salad recipes. The quinoa just makes it a complete meal.
October 9, 2020 at 9:40 pm
Thanks Vidya, and it definitely makes it a complete meal. Also its a good change from the normal high starch fasting food.
Preeti Tandon Shridhar
October 10, 2020 at 8:43 pm
Beautifully plated salad. Absolutely my kinda dinner. I enjoy quinoa and apple combo. Loved the idea of adding avocado.
October 10, 2020 at 11:28 pm
Thank you so much Preeti, the avocado just makes it even more filling.
October 11, 2020 at 4:39 am
What a lovely colourful and healthy salad platter. A feast for the eyes and the tongue as well. I would also prefer such meal during the fasting period to those starchy , fried dishes.
October 11, 2020 at 8:22 pm
Thank you so much Shobha, I try and avoid fried dishes and only sometimes make them if hubby insists. I too prefer more nutritious meals.
October 18, 2020 at 10:37 am
This is a crunchy colourful salad, love it. I love the redquinoa on salads as i do find they have a crispness about them and that goes perfectly well with other salad elements.
October 18, 2020 at 9:19 pm
Thanks Seema, you’re right the red quinoa does have a bit of a bite and is great with salads. So in this tricolor one, its a mixture of textures.
October 25, 2020 at 3:04 pm
Such a colorful, healthy and nutritious salad with quinoa, apple and avocado. Never seen red or black quinoa here. It makes the salad so vibrant and inviting.
October 25, 2020 at 6:52 pm
Thank you so much Narmadha. I’ve also previously used white and tastes equally good.
October 27, 2020 at 3:45 pm
This is a lovely meal salad, Mayuri! And I really want to try this for lunch soon. Luckily I have all the ingredients too, just have to order in some quinoa. Great nutritional profile and very pretty pictures!
October 27, 2020 at 8:51 pm
Thank you so much Maria. Enjoy the salad.
October 27, 2020 at 8:04 pm
Quinoa salad with Apple and Avocado sounds like a wholesome guilt-free treat whether fasting or not. Loved how beautiful the salad plate looks like! Very inviting !
October 27, 2020 at 8:49 pm
Thank you so much Poonam. Its a filling salad and we love it especially when its too hot to enjoy normal dal sabji.
Super duper kitchen
October 28, 2020 at 5:24 am
Such a wholesome, healthy and filling salad with the goodness of fruits. Especially I loved the idea of adding avocado in it. Also the red quinoa is something I have not come across.
November 5, 2020 at 5:30 pm
Thank you Niranjana. Sometimes, we get a mixture of the red, brown and white quinoa. Avocado makes it very filling.
October 29, 2020 at 4:08 am
Wow that’s something interesting our favourite salads can be eaten during fasting! Loved the recipe and the adding of quinoa makes it a complete meal. I would love to enjoy this anytime. Perfect crunchy and full of flavour salad.
October 29, 2020 at 5:26 pm
Thank you so much Paarul. Enjoy the salad whenever you try it.
October 29, 2020 at 5:35 am
Quinoa apple walnuts wow what a nutritious meal. I would love to have it bowlful on lunch. Salad looks so delicious and colorful. Used quinoa flour but never used quinoa grains. Now your salad tempting me to order quinoa.
October 29, 2020 at 5:24 pm
Thank you Sujata, using whole quinoa seeds is so easy and its a versatile ingredient. I love using it.
October 30, 2020 at 5:49 am
So fresh and easy. all the flavors matched perfectly, a delight to eat. It was really delicious , perfect mix of flavors. I loved the addition of walnuts fro crunchiness into salad. It’s healthy, satisfying, and a full meal in one dish!
October 30, 2020 at 4:01 pm
Thank you Jolly and I agree with you, its a total meal in itself, filling and healthy.
October 31, 2020 at 5:29 pm
I like the crunch from the walnuts and apple in this recipe… could have this chilled on a hot summer day 🙂
October 31, 2020 at 8:01 pm
Thank you Kalyani.
October 31, 2020 at 8:51 pm
Apple Avocado Quinoa Salad seems so refreshing, protein rich dish ! Love the fact that it is completely gluten free and vegan salad. I am sure it is a perfect light meal opt for anyone
November 1, 2020 at 4:41 pm
Thank you so much Sasmita.