Quinoa Tangerine Salad

May 29, 2022mayurisjikoni
Blog post




Quinoa Tangerine Salad is a very colourful, flavourful, protein rich and filling salad. Not difficult at all to make, add ingredients of your choice. Colour, different textures and taste makes any salad appealing for fussy eaters. What I like about this salad is that is can easily be enjoyed as a light meal or for picnics. Easy to make for potluck parties.


Quinoa (pronounced as keenwah) is not grain but edible seeds which have originated from the Andean region. Quinoa can be white, red and black. It is also possible to buy the tricolour quinoa. Whenever available, I prefer to use that for salads. Rich in protein, half cup of uncooked quinoa has 8g of it. Quinoa is ideal as a protein source for vegetarians, because it contains all the essential amino acids (protein building blocks) that the body needs. The only other plant that has that unique quality is soy. It is also a rich source of thiamin, vitamin B6, folate, zinc, potassium, magnesium and selenium. Along with that it provides 15% of the daily iron requirement.Easy to cook, quinoa is gluten free.



  • Use it in place of rice with dals, curries, sabjis.
  • Replace the rice to make pulao.
  • Add cooked quinoa to salads.
  • Enjoy it for breakfast as a pudding topped with fruits.



Chickpea & Quinoa Burgers are protein rich with delicious savoury flavours, healthy and filling too. Served with hummus, salad leaves, tomato, cucumber, onion and cheese, it is an excellent way to add vegetables to your family's diet.
Check out this recipe
Apple Avocado Quinoa Salad is a filling, refreshing, protein rich, gluten free and vegan salad. Nuttiness from th quinoa and nuts, creaminess from the avocado and the crunch from the apple, its a perfect light meal option.
Check out this recipe
Quinoa Lapsi is a gluten free version of the traditional Gujarati sweet dish, lapsi. It is not only rich in protein but healthy with the addition of nuts, dried fruits and jaggery. This lapsi is totally suitable for those who follow a gluten free diet 
Check out this recipe
Quinoa Tabbouleh is a different version of the famous Classic Middle Eastern Salad. Bulgur wheat is replaced by protein rich quinoa which adds a lovely nutty kind of flavour to the salad. A healthy, filling, gluten free, vegan salad that is perfect served with pita bread or enjoyed on its own as a light meal.
Check out this recipe

Farali Quinoa Khichdi


By the way, Sunday Funday is a group of Food Bloggers. Every Sunday we  share some fun, traditional, hearty or easy recipes to make Sunday Family Meals a bit more exciting. To join this fun group, visit the Sunday Funday Facebook Page. Request to join in.



Renu, who blogs at Cook With Renu, suggested that we prepare any dish where the star ingredient is quinoa. The theme reminded me of a very old recipe on my blog which seriously required an update. So instead of making something new, decided to give Quinoa Tangerine Salad a complete overhaul. As you read along, you will understand why I had to do that.

This recipe was first published on 11/09/2013. Updated on 29/05/2022


There are many recipes that don’t mention rinsing quinoa. However, it is best to rinse quinoa before cooking. Quinoa naturally has very thin bitter coating called saponin. If you cook it without rinsing, then the quinoa will taste slightly bitter. Some quinoa packets indicate whether it is rinsed or not. Put the quinoa in a fine meshed sieve and rinse. Best to rinse it under the tap water, gently rubbing the quinoa between your fingers.



Heat some oil in a pan. Roast the quinoa. Then add water or stock and salt. Cover and bring to a boil. Then lower, the heat and cook till done. Takes about 15-20 minutes. You know it is done when ‘tail’ appear around the seed. When done, fluff up the quinoa using a fork.


Add rinsed quinoa and water/stock with salt to a saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil. Then lower, the heat and cook till done. Takes about 15-20 minutes. You know it is done when ‘tail’ appear around the seed. When done, fluff up the quinoa using a fork.

For every cup of uncooked quinoa you need 2 cups of water or liquid.

Quinoa can be cooked in the microwave but I’ve not tried it as yet.


Our local cable TV keeps on showing repeated old episodes of Rachael Ray Show. In one of the episodes she cooked quinoa salad with chicken and I knew I had try out this interesting new grain. But it was not easily available in the supermarkets back then. During a trip to Nairobi, I picked up a small packet from Healthy U. Pricey, compared to millet, rice, etc but I had to try it.

Can’t remember how many trips we’ve made to Nairobi to get our Super Visa for Canada! The wait at the medical centre for health tests was the worst. We were there from 8a.m. to 5p.m.! And the building is so basic that the cold air came in through the doors and winters. I thought we’re definitely going to catch a cold, but luckily we didn’t.

Cooked about a cup of quinoa following instructions on the packet, added some tangerine which hubby’s patient had given us, and lots of them! Added a bit of mint, lemon juice and made my first quinoa salad. Hubby commented that it required more flavour. Being my first exciting moment of cooking and tasting quinoa, the recipe was published on my blog. That is way back in 2013!

Since then this recipe has had so many additions to turn it into a light meal. Especially handy when it gets too hot in my kitchen to cook elaborate meals during the hot season.

My first trip to Canada and came back with some quinoa. It was also the first time I got to know that besides white, quinoa can be red or black.




      • Quinoa – use white, red, black or tri coloured one. Rinse the quinoa in a sieve to remove the bitter coating saponin.
      • Chickpeas – cooked. Use canned or dried ones. If you use dried ones, soak them overnight in warm water. Next day cook them in enough water and salt till done.
      • Onion – peeled and finely chopped. Use red, white or yellow one.
      • Pomegranate arils – can replace them with grapes if you want.
      • Tangerines – peel, remove the white fibre and slice or chop. Can replace them with clementines or oranges.
      • Almonds – slightly toasted and chopped. Can replace them with any other nuts of your choice. Or omit them.
      • Dried Cranberries – can replace them with raisins, sultanas, dried blueberries, etc.
      • Cucumber – I prefer using English Cucumber. Slice or chop.
      • Salad Leaves – use any of your choice. I  like adding arugula or baby spinach.
      • Mint Leaves – fresh mint leaves, adds so much flavour to the salad.
      • Salt – use normal table salt, sea salt or rock salt. Need it for the quinoa and the dressing.
      • Water/ Stock – to cook the quinoa.
      • Pepper Powder – for the salad dressing.
      • Lemon Juice – for the salad dressing.
      • Olive oil – for the salad dressing. I prefer the flavour of olive oil for salad dressings. Can use any of your choice.
      • Garlic – need one clove only. Peel and minced. Don’t add too much as you don’t want the overpowering taste of garlic.
      • Za’atar – adds so much flavour. I have used ready made za’atar mixture. If you don’t have any, replace it any dried herb mixture.
      • Maple Syrup – optional. We prefer the tangy flavour of this salad so I don’t add any. Also the sweetness from the tangerines is enough. Can use honey or sugar instead.






Quinoa Tangerine Salad is a very colourful, flavourful, protein rich and filling salad. Not difficult at all to make, add ingredients of your choice. Colour, different textures and taste makes any salad appealing for fussy eaters. What I like about this salad is that is can easily be enjoyed as a light meal or for picnics. Easy to make for potluck parties. 
5 from 7 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Light Meal, Salad, Starter
Cuisine International
Servings 4



  • ½ cup quinoa uncooked
  • 1 cup chickpeas cooked
  • ¼ cup onion finely chopped
  • 2-3 tangerines peeled
  • ¼ cup almonds toasted and cut into pieces
  • 2 tbsp dried cranberries
  • ¼ cup pomegranate aril
  • 1 medium cucumber sliced
  • 1 cup salad leaves baby spinach
  • 10-12 mint leaves
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup water/stock


  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp za'atar
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper powder
  • 1 tsp maple syrup optional



  • Add lemon juice to a small mixing bowl.
  • Add salt and whisk till the salt dissolves.
  • Add olive oil and whisk till is becomes creamy.
  • Add the chopped onion and garlic.
  • Let the onion marinate till the quinoa gets cooked.
  • Just before adding the dressing to the salad, add za'atar, pepper and maple syrup if using any.
  • Mix well.


  • Rinse the quinoa just the way you do for rice. Rub it gently between your fingers to remove the coating that may be on it. The coating makes it taste bitter.
  • Add water/stock and salt to a pan. Add the rinsed quinoa.
  • Bring it to a boil. Lower the heat to medium and cover the pan. Let the quinoa simmer for 15 minutes.
  • After 15 minutes, switch off the heat. Let the quinoa stand in the pan, covered for a further 5 minutes.
  • After 5 minutes remove the quinoa into a serving dish or sieve.
  • Fluff it up using a fork.
  • Allow the quinoa to cool down.
  • In the meantime get the other salad ingredients ready.


  • Peel the tangerines. Remove all the fibres. Slice them into rounds or chop into quarters.
  • Slice or chop the cucumber.
  • Toast the almonds in a wide pan over low heat or in the microwave oven for 1-2 minutes.
  • When the quinoa becomes cold, add it a mixing bowl.
  • Add the almonds, cranberries, chickpeas,pomegranate, mint and chopped salad greens.
  • Add the dressing. Mix well.
  • Add the tangerine slices and gently mix.
  • Serve the salad as a side or as a light meal.


  • Cooked quinoa stays in the fridge for a day or two but make sure you store it covered.
  • The rule of the thumb is that for every 1 part of quinoa you need 2 parts of water.
  • ½ cup of uncooked quinoa gives about 1 cup of cooked quinoa.
  • Can replace chickpeas with beans, fish, chicken, tofu, paneer, etc
  • Add a dressing of your choice.
  • Replace the cranberries with raisins or sultanas.
  • Use any quinoa of your choice, white, red, black or tricolour one.
  • Can replace tangerine with clementines or oranges.
Keyword easy quinoa salad, how to prepare quinoa tangerine salad, quinoa tangerine salad



If you do try this recipe then please either
add a comment below,
send a picture to my email mayuri.ajay.patel62@gmail.com
tag me as #mayuri_jikoni on Instagram
or tag me on Twitter as #Mayuri1962








  • Srimathi Mani

    September 12, 2013 at 1:53 am

    Thank you for sending in your recipe to our event. Quinoa is what I enjoy all the time. The combination of feta and oranges in the salad, does make it extra special. A perfect salad to make ahead of time and take them to work or school. Perfectly satisfying.

  • Linsy Patel

    September 12, 2013 at 4:23 pm

    delicious and healthy salad.

  • Karen’s Kitchen Stories

    May 29, 2022 at 2:32 pm

    Great tip about rinsing the quinoa. I did not know that!

    1. mayurisjikoni

      June 1, 2022 at 6:40 pm

      Thanks Karen, and you’re welcome.

  • Sneha Datar

    May 30, 2022 at 5:38 am

    Would love to have this as my dinner, a salad so healthy and filling!

    1. mayurisjikoni

      June 1, 2022 at 6:37 pm

      Thank you so much Sneha, enjoy when you try it.

  • Seema

    May 31, 2022 at 2:06 am

    5 stars
    The flavours of the salad were amazing.i loved it for lunch and had the leftovers in the box for the next day. The quinoa gave the necessary volume to the salad and the tangerines , so yum.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      June 1, 2022 at 6:36 pm

      Thank you so much Seema. Am so glad you enjoyed the salad and yes it does make a perfect lunch box meal.

  • Priya Vj

    June 4, 2022 at 10:18 am

    5 stars
    All my favorite ingredients have gone into this salad . The tangerines must be making it very refreshing ..chickpeas add the needed protein quotient of the day ..all in all a filling and healthy option.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      June 6, 2022 at 2:18 pm

      Thank you so much Priya, it is a healthy, filling and delicious salad. Give it a try. Can add any fruit you have at hand. I sometimes add pineapples too.

  • Jayashree T.Rao

    June 4, 2022 at 1:30 pm

    5 stars
    Lovely and filling salad with quinoa and tangerine. I have some quinoa left and will be making this for my lunch tomorrow.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      June 6, 2022 at 2:15 pm

      Thanks Jayashree, enjoy the salad.

  • Wendy Klik

    June 5, 2022 at 10:17 am

    I didn’t know about rinsing quinoa. Thanks for the tip.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      June 6, 2022 at 2:13 pm

      You’re welcome Wendy.It also removes any dirt that might be present on it.

  • Karen’s Kitchen Stories

    June 8, 2022 at 6:16 pm

    That’s a gorgeous salad, and quite a story to go with it!!!

    1. mayurisjikoni

      June 8, 2022 at 10:24 pm

      Thanks Karen.

  • Renu

    June 9, 2022 at 5:01 am

    5 stars
    The salad looks absolutely tempting. With quinoa, chickpeas, and all the fruit and veggies , this is the perfect filling salad for Summers

    1. mayurisjikoni

      June 9, 2022 at 11:19 pm

      Thanks Renu, it definitely is a perfect summer salad.

  • Archana

    June 13, 2022 at 11:56 am

    5 stars
    Ahh! what a delight this salad is to the eyes n the palate. Loved the delicious fruit n veggies in it. It is filling enough so I don’t need a snack after lunch. Thanks dear we loved it.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      June 13, 2022 at 4:27 pm

      Thank you so much Archana, am so glad you enjoyed it.

  • Kalyani

    June 13, 2022 at 12:11 pm

    5 stars
    Perfect quinoa salad for the summer. Am getting my new stash next month so this will definitely be in a menu rotation

    1. mayurisjikoni

      June 13, 2022 at 4:26 pm

      Thanks Kalyani, adding quinoa makes the salad more filling and protein rich. Please do try out the recipe.

  • Preethicuisine

    June 13, 2022 at 9:13 pm

    5 stars
    This quinoa tangerine salad sounds so refreshing .love the Amazing flavours of this nutritious salad. Can’t wait to make it at home. Thanks for sharing this fab recipe.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      June 15, 2022 at 6:02 pm

      Your most welcome Preethi and enjoy the refreshing and healthy salad.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Previous Post Next Post

Example Colors

%d bloggers like this: