Quinoa and corn salad is an abundant meal in a bowl, infused with the flavor of your favorite salsa. A great main-dish salad, it’s perfect for pairing with simple soups or vegan quesadillas. It’s also an excellent dish to share at potlucks all year round.
There’s an option to add beans to the salad to make it even heftier, but if you don’t go with that option, you can serve this with simple bean dishes or tortilla specialties using beans.
Complete the meal: Baked sweet potatoes and/or simply prepared broccoli, hardy greens, or green beans are good companions for everyday meals.
ARE YOU NEW TO QUINOA?
Quinoa seems like an established staple in the plant-based world, but here, for those who have yet to discover it, are a few basics:
- Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wa) is an ancient food indigenous to the South American Andes. It was introduced to the American natural foods market in the 1980s.
- Quinoa is considered a superfood for its vitamin and mineral profile. Botanically, it’s more of a seed than a grain.
- You can use it as a bed of grain for vegetable or bean dishes as a change of pace from rice; to stuff winter vegetables, especially hard squashes; to make pilafs; and for delicious tabbouli-style salads like this one.
- The most common variety of quinoa grain is a kind of yellowish-tan, but red and black varieties are now available as well. They cook up the same way and taste pretty much the same as well; their appeal is mainly visual. Sometimes you can purchase a mix of all three colors.
- Quinoa cooks quickly and easily — use a ratio of liquid to grain of 2 to 1 (like 2 cups water or broth to 1 cup quinoa).
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed (any color, or a combination of two)
- 1 1/2 cups lightly cooked or thawed frozen corn kernels
- 2 cups lightly cooked fresh or thawed frozen green beans, halved or cut into 1-inch lengths
- 1/2 medium orange or yellow bell pepper, finely diced
- 1/2 cup chopped carrot
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced
- 1 cup salsa, your favorite variety 1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped black or green olives, optional
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- Juice of 1/2 to 1 lime, to taste
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
- Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
- Combine the quinoa with 2 cups water in a small saucepan and bring to a rapid simmer, then lower the heat. Cover and simmer gently for 15 minutes, or until the water is absorbed.
- Transfer the quinoa to a large mixing bowl to cool. If need be, speed up the cooling process by refrigerating for a while.
- Once the quinoa is just warm, combine it with the remaining ingredients in the mixing bowl and stir together. Transfer to a serving container or serve straight from the mixing bowl.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 170Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 386mgCarbohydrates: 31gFiber: 5gSugar: 9gProtein: 5g
Nutrition data is always an estimate depending on program used to calculate and exact products used. This is given for informational purposes only and accuracy cannot be guaranteed.
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Photos of Salsa Quinoa and Corn Salad by Kat Ka / Bigstock