Very Berry Quinoa Salad with Cinnamon Toasted Pecans


This salad is light and fresh yet has plenty of protein from the quinoa and pecans. Fresh summer berries are little powerhouses of vitamins and are super kid-friendly. The toasted pecans take this dish to the next level.

This recipe comes to us from The Meatless Monday Family Cookbook by Jenn Sebestyen.

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Serves 4

  • For the Quinoa:
  • 1 cup (173 g) tri-color dry quinoa, rinsed well with cold water (or any color quinoa)
  • 1¼ cups (295 ml) water

 

  • For the Cinnamon Toasted Pecans:
  • 1½ tablespoons (30 g) pure maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon (9 g) coconut sugar or (15 g) brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup (110 g) pecan halves
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil

 

  • For the Salad:
  • 6 cups (330 g) mixed baby salad greens
  • 2 cups (weight will vary) fresh mixed berries (blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, etc.)

 

  • For the Maple Dijon Vinaigrette:
  • 3 tablespoons (45 g) Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons (40 g) pure maple syrup, or to taste
  • 2 tablespoons (28 ml) apple cider vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • ½ cup (120 ml) extra-virgin olive oil

 

For the Quinoa: Combine the quinoa and water in a small pot and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer for 12 to 15 minutes until the quinoa is tender and the liquid is absorbed. Fluff with a fork.

 

For the Cinnamon Toasted Pecans: Line a large plate with parchment paper and set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together the maple syrup, sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Add the pecans and stir to coat evenly.

Heat the coconut oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Pour the pecans in the skillet, spreading them out in an even layer. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until toasted. Nuts can burn quickly, so don’t walk away at this point! You’ll know the pecans are done when you start to smell them. Pour them out onto the parchment-lined plate and spread in an even layer. Let them cool. They will crisp up as they cool.

 

For the Salad: Combine the mixed baby greens, mixed berries, cooked quinoa, and toasted pecans in a large salad bowl. Mix well. To serve, divide among 4 bowls and drizzle with the Maple Dijon Vinaigrette.

 

For the Maple Dijon Vinaigrette: In a small bowl, whisk together all the ingredients until smooth.

Heat the coconut oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Pour the pecans in the skillet, spreading them out in an even layer. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until toasted. Nuts can burn quickly, so don’t walk away at this point! You’ll know the pecans are done when you start to smell them. Pour them out onto the parchment-lined plate and spread in an even layer. Let them cool. They will crisp up as they cool.

 

Swap it! Try using romaine, red leaf lettuce, or arugula instead of the mixed baby greens to change it up.

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Nutrition Information

Very Berry Quinoa Salad with Cinnamon Toasted Pecans

Servings per Recipe: 4

Amount per Serving

Calories:  695

Calories from Fat:  431

Total Fat:  50g

Saturated Fat:  7g

Cholesterol:  0mg

Sodium:  639mg

Potassium:  750mg

Carbohydrates:  57g

Dietary Fiber:  10g

Protein:  11g

Sugars:  23g

Vitamin A:  96%

Vitamin C:  52%

Calcium:  13%

Iron:  24%

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