Quinoa and Lentil Salad

High protein, high fiber, tastes terrific - what more could you ask for in a salad?

Quinoa Lentil Salad

A great reason to enjoy this quinoa and lentil salad is because quinoa has a high-protein content, which makes it a great cholesterol-free and low-fat source of protein. According to the USDA nutrient database, 1 cup of cooked quinoa (185 g) contains 8.14 grams of protein. To put that in perspective, the recommended daily protein intake is about 56 grams for most men and 46 for most women....

It is also a great source of fiber, iron, calcium, potassium and zinc. Quinoa is also fairly low in calories. One cup of cooked quinoa provides about 222 calories.

Another reason to love this quinoa and lentil salad, of course, is the lentils! Lentils have almost no fat (<1g saturated fat), zero cholesterol and about 9 grams of protein and 8 grams of dietary fiber.

Lentils are also very rich in numerous other vitamins and minerals and provide about  179 mcg of folic acid per 1/2 cup serving.

So, while this quinoa salad may look decadent and is actually pretty filling, it is a great way to get excellent nutritional value while enjoying the taste and texture of a great salad!

Quinoa and Lentil Salad


1/2 cup quinoa, well rinsed
1 (14.5 oz.) can vegetable broth
1 cup canned small brown lentils, cooked
1 tomato, seeded and chopped
1/2 cup frozen cut green beans, defrosted
1/2 cup chopped orange bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1 tsp. dried thyme
3 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp lemon pepper
1 Tbsp. canola oil
2 Tbsp. lightly toasted pine nuts (optional)

How we make it

In a medium saucepan, combine the quinoa with
the broth. Cover and bring to a boil over medium-
high heat. Reduce heat to medium and
cook until the grains of quinoa are slightly al dente,
about 20-25 minutes. Remove from the heat, let the
covered pot sit for 10 minutes, then uncover and fluff
with a fork.

Place the cooked quinoa in a mixing bowl. Add the
lentils, tomato, green beans, pepper, red onion,
walnuts and thyme.

In a small bowl, mix together the vinegar and salt
until the salt dissolves. Whisk in the lemon pepper
and oil. Pour the dressing over the salad and mix
with a fork to combine.

If possible, allow the salad sit at room temperature
for about 20 minutes before serving. Or, cover and refrig-
erate for up to 24 hours. Garnish with lightly toasted
pine nuts, if desired.

Makes 12 servings, 1/2 cup per serving.

Per serving: 80 calories, 3.5 g total fat (0 g satu-
rated fat), 10 g carbohydrate, 3 g protein, 2 g dietary
fiber, 170 mg sodium.

Adapted from “Something Different”, written by Dana Jacobi, author of 12 Best Foods Cookbook and contributor to AICR’s New American Plate Cookbook: Recipes for a Healthy Weight and a Healthy Life.

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