a balanced plate with room for dessert

Maple Balsamic Quinoa Salad

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I’ve been hunting for quinoa dishes ever since my co-worker picked up the world’s largest bag of quinoa from Costco for me. I’ve come across some seriously drool-worthy dishes laden with cheese and other delicious dairy-ness. While I’ve been able to introduce dairy back into my diet with some success, I’m still wary – one bite too many is bad news.

Fortunately, this super easy maple balsamic quinoa salad is 100% dairy-free. As an added bonus, the ingredients in the recipe are fridge and pantry staples for me. I found the original dressing proportions of oil, vinegar and syrup to be way too sweet, so I decreased the amount of syrup and oil. If you prefer a sweeter dressing, use a 1:1 ratio of oil, vinegar and syrup.

maple balsamic quinoa salad |

Maple Balsamic Quinoa Salad

1 2/3 cup quinoa, rinsed
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup raw unsalted almonds, roughly chopped
4 to 5 scallions, thinly sliced
1 tsp sea salt, plus additional to taste

  1. Cook quinoa according to package directions. Refrigerate until completely cooled, stirring occasionally.
  2. Meanwhile, prepared the dressing by whisking oil, vinegar and maple syrup together in a small bowl.
  3. Add dressing to the cooled quinoa. Stir in cranberries, pecans, scallions and salt until well combined. Refrigerate at least 1 hour, preferably overnight. Serve cold or at room temperature.

Slightly adapted from Clean Eating Magazine


Author: Jenni

Dietitian by day and Midwest food blogger by night. Lover of whiskey, running, and all things food.

One thought on “Maple Balsamic Quinoa Salad

  1. That looks very good. I have a box of tri-colour quinoa in the cupboard to try new gluten free salads for my coeliac son. I think he would go for this. It’s on the list for the weekend. margaret

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