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Golden Quinoa Salad with Mango and Walnuts

I've adapted this recipe from the California Walnut Commission, but you can use your favourite toasted nut. I prefer to use thawed frozen mangoes (which I chop a little smaller), since I always have those on hand.

I love to make this in the summer with mint from my garden, but if you've got a pot of mint in your kitchen, it can be made during the colder months as well. Of course you can skip the mint, but it adds a lot of flavour to the salad.


Makes 4 servings

For the dressing:

1/3 cup plain yogurt OR 4-5 Tbsp cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp fresh lime or lemon juice
1 tbsp minced ginger root
2 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp EACH salt and freshly ground pepper

For the salad:
1 cup quinoa + 2 cups water
2 ripe mangoes (or about 4 cups thawed frozen mangoes), chopped
(if you don't have mangoes, you can substitute with 5 diced medjool dates, but the salad volume will be reduced)
1 sweet red pepper, sliced
1 green onion, thinly sliced
1 chili or jalapeno pepper, finely chopped (optional)
1/3 cup chopped fresh mint
1 cup walnuts, toasted and roughly chopped

To prepare dressing, in a medium bowl, whisk together yogurt, lime juice, ginger root, curry, salt, pepper, and oil. Set aside.

To make salad, put quinoa and water in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Turn down heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Turn off heat and leave pot on the element for 7 minutes. Remove from heat, uncover and fluff with a fork. Let cool.

In a bowl, combine quinoa and dressing until well combined. Gently stir in mangoes, red pepper, green onion, chili pepper (if using), mint, and walnuts.