Are you also struggling to find an appetite for heavy and warm dinners these days? It’s getting pretty warm and humid right now and ain’t nobody wants to eat soups and stews for dinner. I got you, my friend. Although I’m not gonna lie, I do love a good vegan stew no matter the season. But fresh veggie salad is bomb right now! So if you are looking for easy and simple, yet nutritious and plant-based dinner recipe you came to the right post!
Perfect summer picnic dish!
This quinoa salad is perfect for hot summer nights! It is also an excellent picnic side dish because I know lots of you are enjoying outside gatherings this time of year.
I personally am a huge fan of quinoa. Especially if you don’t eat animal products and strive to incorporate less processed foods into your meals, quinoa is the answer! Quinoa is kinda like a grain, but not entirely. It looks like a seed but is cooked and eaten like a grain. Anyways, the point is that it’s very high in protein and contains all nine essential amino acids. It is also packed with nutrients, like manganese, B vitamins, magnesium, antioxidants and very high in FIBER! Oh, plus it’s gluten-free.
Good for you quinoa! I certainly love you.
And so should you! You can find quinoa in all food stores, cook it in water: 2 cups of water for 1 cup of dry quinoa until it absorbs all the liquid and gets nice and fluffy. Takes about 10-15 minutes, talk about fast and easy, yes!
But enough about the quinoa and its benefits, this summer salad also contains other amazing veggies. Obviously, I love incorporating seasonal vegetables here, because that’s the whole purpose of eating healthy and nutritious. We have lots of cucumbers and tomatoes in our garden at the moment so those go everywhere right now!
The point is to mix in as many different colored veggies to make this summer salad as nutritious and wholesome as possible. The more the merrier, right!? Different vegetables give this salad more taste and texture, which I love! At the end of the day, it’s all about taste and texture, especially if you are trying to impress friends and family with this one. It does look very pretty too, just saying.
Use any veggies or even fruit you enjoy and have in the garden or is in the season when you are making this. Like I said, cucumber and tomatoes go amazingly here, also red bell pepper, beets, broccoli maybe and don’t forget about beans. Roasted chickpeas are my favorite!
About the dressing…
Hempseed dressing is the simplest recipe really. It is just a matter of blending a few ingredients together. Comes out super thick and creamy and goes perfectly with this summer salad. But if you don’t like this one for some reason (it’s pretty rich), I’m also giving you an alternative with tahini, which is even easier to prepare. I do prefer the hempseed one, because I’m all about food prepping and using leftovers, and this hemp dressing is perfect for this. You can store it in the fridge for a few days and use it in potato salads, as a dip, on pasta, on grilled vegetables…DELICIOUS!Print
Perfect summer quinoa salad for hot summer evenings. Super nutritious and delicious, dressed in creamy and rich hempseed dressing. Ideal for picnics and side dishes. Very simple and quick to prepare, packed with vitamins, protein, and fiber to keep you full and satisfied. You are definitely going to impress your guests at the next picnic party with this one.
For the quinoa salad:
110 grams dry quinoa
330 ml water
1 red bell pepper
1 medium-sized cucumber
1 ripe avocado
1 medium-sized cooked beetroot OR grated carrot
1 can of chickpeas (pan roasted with cayenne pepper, salt, and cumin)
For the hemp dressing:
120 grams hemp hearts
100 ml soy milk
juice of half a lemon
1 tsp garlic powder
pinch of sweet paprika
For quick tahini dressing:
1 tbsp tahini
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 – 2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp water (or more to thin it out)
- Boil the quinoa in lightly salted water covered until it absorbs the liquid and becomes soft and fluffy. Takes about 10-15 minutes.
- Pan roast chickpeas with a dash of olive oil, salt, cayenne pepper and cumin until they become crispy. Let them cool down.
- Cut all the vegetables into bite-sized pieces and stir them in a big bowl together with the quinoa and chickpeas.
- For the hemp ranch, combine all the ingredients in the food processor or high-speed blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Dress the salad with the dressing and enjoy.
Store the leftovers in the fridge in airtight container for a day or two.
TAHINI DRESSING: whisk all the ingredients with a spoon and dress the salad.
Store the hemp seed ranch in the fridge in a glass container for a few days.
Keywords: Easy summer salad, cold quinoa salad, vegan quinoa salad, healthy plant-based summer salad
USING PINTEREST? PIN THIS IMAGE FOR LATER!