Pomegranate Quinoa Salad

Author - Alyssa Rimmer

Healthy and protein rich this Pomegranate Quinoa Salad is crunchy and delicious.

When you're world seems like it's spinning at warp speed and you feel like you're getting left in the dust, there is only one thing to turn to. Your comforts.

For me that means surrounding myself with the people that make me happy, doing the things that bring me joy and cooking the food that makes me light up inside.

Quinoa. 

Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah), is that little miracle food that brings a smile to my face with every bite. No matter what ingredients I throw together, quinoa is always the star. It shines brighter than any other food in my kitchen.

The best thing about quinoa is its reliability. I know that if I'm craving something healthy and nutritious, I can make quinoa. If I want something sinfully delicious, I can make quinoa. If I want something to last me through the day and keep me feeling satisfied, I can make quinoa. Quinoa is my go-to, always.

A heavenly treat from the gluten-free gods

Take advantage of the fabulous pomegranates that are now in season!

We all worry about the Holidays. Each November, as the weather begins to get colder and the trees are almost bare, our bodies gear up for six solid weeks of eating food. Decadent, rich, delicious, heavenly, guilty, amazing food. Food that is fattening, sweet, and not so healthy, but oh so very tasty.

It begins with Thanksgiving.

For many gluten-free and dairy-free guests, this meal is their worst nightmare. Pumpkin pie, gravy, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, you name it and the traditional recipe probably contains gluten / dairy. I'm here to tell you, don't fret, lovely. You have options, and plenty of them.

Thanksgiving at my house is traditionally fairly healthy. I'm lucky because my family is loves natural and whole foods and has embraced my gluten and dairy-free dietary needs. I will be whipping up some fabulous recipes for our meal and I'm sure they will be thrilled.

This brings me to my Pomegranate Quinoa Salad recipe. The best advice I can give you for the Holidays, is to embrace you inner baker and chef and start experimenting with the T-day classics. Don't be afraid to add your twist to it or simply bring something entirely new to the table. That's what I plan on doing. I'm introducing Quinoa to my family's Thanksgiving feast.

A simple and easy salad to help make the Holidays worry-free.

Pomegranate Quinoa Salad

My family is in for a treat this Thanksgiving. I'm bringing a guest. A sweet, fabulous, ity-bity guest. I'm bringing Quinoa. Not just any quinoa, though. I'm bringing an amazingly fresh, light and crispy quinoa salad that will help off-set those heavy dairy and gluten laden dishes. I'm excited to share my gluten-free creations with a crowd full of gluten-eaters.

ingredients:

  • 1 cup dry quinoa
  • 2 zucchinis, halved lengthwise and sliced
  • 2 leeks, halved lengthwise and sliced
  • 1 pomegranate
  • 1/2 cup toasted pepitas
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Start your quinoa by bringing 2 cups water to boil. Add your quinoa, cover and let simmer for 8 – 10 minutes. When the water has been absorbed, turn the heat off and let stand, covered for another 5 minutes. 
While the quinoa is cooking, sauté the zucchinis and leeks together with a little bit of olive oil. Add a sprinkle of sea salt and pepper to taste. When the zucchinis have started to soften, add your toasted pepitas. Saute for another 2 minutes and remove from the heat.
Prepare your pomegranate by removing all the seeds. I find the easiest way to do this is to cut the pomegranate in quarters and then removing the seeds from each quarter. Don't try to be mess-free with this task, be prepared to get very red and juicy. I advise wearing an apron to avoid the splatter!
Once your quinoa has cooled a bit, transfer it to a large bowl. Combine the sautéed veggies and seeds with the quinoa and toss to combine. Add you pomegranate seeds and apple cider vinegar. Lightly fluff all the ingredients together. Add a dash of sea salt and pepper if you want more flavoring.
Serve over greens or as a side. It was delicious drizzled with a bit of golden balsamic vinegar.

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2 comments
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  1. Hi Lori! Thanks for the kind words. The Cleanse is definitely a great way to start a gluten-free diet. It will not only help you see the amazing effects of eating a gluten-free and dairy-free diet, but hopefully you'll be able to pinpoint if you have any other sensitivities.

    Quinoa flakes are great. I use them in burgers to serve as a binding agent, in crumbles, in cookies, in granola and even as hot cereal. They're great. I also adore their pasta although most of Ancient Harvest's pasta has corn in it, so it's a no-go on Clean.

    Check out my recipe for Quinoa Burgers, they're super tasty!
    http://queenofquinoa.blogspot.com/2011/10/vegan-quinoa-burgers.html

  2. Great recipe. I am just beginning my search for gluten-free veggies dishes since I am going to start the Clean cleanse. This sounds like a winner. Can' wait to try this. Any ideas of what one can do with Quinoa FLakes? I used to add it to my oatmeal giving it a nutty flavor.

    FYI: Ancient Harvest makes some great Quinoa Pasta.

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