Mediterranean Quinoa Salad
This recipe for Mediterranean Quinoa Salad will quickly become a staple in your kitchen. It’s perfect to enjoy on its own, bring to a
A healthy quinoa salad recipe everyone will love
If there’s one type of food I eat on the reg it’s definitely quinoa. I usually take some time on Sundays to do some meal prep, which ALWAYS includes preparing a pot of quinoa. This way I know I’ll have some on hand to use for breakfast quinoa, in salads or even to make a batch of my black bean quinoa burgers.
This Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is it’s so
Mediterranean Cold Quinoa Salad Ingredients
- Quinoa: we can’t make quinoa salad without quinoa! I like to use white quinoa in this recipe which is light and fluffy. Red and black quinoa tend to have a bit more of a firm texture.
- Red bell pepper: you can substitute with any colour bell pepper you love.
- Cucumber: English cucumber is best for this recipe. It has less water content than some other varieties of cucumber and tends to be on the sweeter side.
- Chickpeas: canned or dried chickpeas will both work. If using dried chickpeas, cook them according to package directions before adding them to the salad.
- Red onion: red onion gives the salad a beautiful colour and a nice slightly spicy and sharp taste. If you’re not a big fan of onions in your salad you can leave this out or use shallots, which will have a milder taste.
- Kalamata olives: make sure to use pitted olives! You don’t want to end up biting into a pit when eating the quinoa salad.
- Sundried tomatoes: you’ll find two varieties of sundried tomatoes at the grocery store. The first is sundried tomatoes in oil and the second is dried sundried tomatoes in a package. I recommend using the sundried tomatoes in oil. They are tastier and have a better texture.
- Basil: fresh basil! Don’t substitute dried.
- Feta: I recommend using double creamed feta. You can find this at most cheese stores. If you can only get regular feta that will work fine too.
- Lemon oregano dressing: this homemade dressing is made with olive oil, fresh lemon juice and dried oregano and lightly coats the quinoa salad.
How to make a Mediterranean quinoa salad
This quinoa salad is so easy to prepare it will quickly become one of your go-to quinoa recipes!
- Cook the quinoa according to package directions
- Chop up all the veggies into small pieces
- Add the quinoa veggies, chickpeas and feta cheese to a large mixing bowl
- Make the dressing and toss together with the salad
Make ahead Mediterranean Quinoa Bowl
This quinoa salad is a great make-ahead recipe and can be prepared in advance if you’d like to make it meal prep or are preparing it to bring to a brunch or dinner.
If you’d like to make this quinoa salad ahead of time, make sure to keep the dressing on the side! It’s important to only dress the salad right before serving so it will stay as fresh as possible. I recommend preparing this salad no more than a day in advance so the basil stays fresh and the vegetables stay crisp.
Mediterranean Quinoa Salad tips and variations
- If there’s any ingredient in this salad you’re not particularly a fan of, you can simply leave them out, or even replace them with something else.
- You can try adding fresh tomatoes in addition to or in place of sun-dried tomatoes, parsley instead of basil, roasted red peppers instead of fresh red peppers…the possibilities here are endless!
- I like to prepare my quinoa in advance and keep in the fridge until it is completely cool before adding the other ingredients. This way the quinoa doesn’t warm up the salad.
- This salad is great to bring to a potluck, picnic or a bbq!
How long does quinoa salad keep in the fridge?
This quinoa salad can be stored in the fridge in a sealed container for up to 2 days if it’s dressed, or up to 4 days if it’s not dressed. (The salad dressing has a dependency to make everything soggy quicker.)
If you’re planning on having leftovers, I recommend only dressing part of the quinoa salad and storing the rest of the salad and dressing separately.
Can I freeze quinoa salad?
Unfortunately no. Everything will become soggy and mushy if you try to freeze it.
White quinoa is the best to use for this salad because it has the most delicate taste and texture when cooked. White quinoa is fluffier than red or black quinoa, which tends to have a dense and grainier texture.
Quinoa is a very versatile grain that can be enjoyed both hot and cold and is delicious served both ways! For the salad, you’ll want to let the quinoa cool completely before using it so it doesn’t heat up the fresh vegetables used in the salad.
No. While you may sometimes see a sprinkle of raw quinoa as a garnish on salads, you don’t want to use all raw quinoa in the salad. It doesn’t have a great taste or texture.
Rinsing quinoa before cooking can help remove any bitter flavour from the quinoa. I personally don’t find white quinoa to be bitter so I don’t usually rinse it, but if you want to take the extra step you can rinse the quinoa in a strainer under cold water for 60 seconds before proceeding with the recipe.
Yes! Quinoa is a pseudocereal and is a great gluten-free alternative to some other types of grains.
Serve cold quinoa salad with:
Mediterranean Quinoa Salad pairs well with almost anything! It can be served as an appetizer or as a side. Here are some pairing ideas:
Mediterranean Quinoa Salad
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 25 mins
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- Category: Main
- Method: Cook
- Cuisine: Mediterranean
This Mediterranean Quinoa Salad will be your new favourite salad recipe! It’s fresh and light and perfect to enjoy as a meal or side!
- 2 cups quinoa, cooked (about 1 cup uncooked)
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1/2 cucumber, chopped
- 1 cup chickpeas
- 1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup kalamata olives, cut in half
- 1/4 cup sundried tomatoes, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup fresh basil, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese (*use vegan feta cheese if needed)
Lemon oregano dressing:
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp white wine vinegar (or red wine vinegar)
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1 tbsp dijon mustard
- 1 tsp maple syrup
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp ground cumin
- salt & pepper to taste
- To prepare the salad mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl. If there is any ingredient you like more of feel free to add more!
- Mix all the salad dressing ingredients together in a small jar. Cover with the lid and shake until incorporated.
- Pour half the salad dressing onto the quinoa salad and give it a taste. If you like more dressing, add more. Otherwise reserve leftover dressing for other salads.
I usually use about half of the salad lemon oregano dressing on this salad. The rest I keep stored in my fridge. This salad is great to bring to parties & potlucks!
If there are any ingredients in this salad your not a fan of you can leave them out.
You can swap out sundried tomatoes for fresh tomatoes if you prefer!
Prepare your quinoa in advance and store it in the fridge to make this recipe even faster.
- Serving Size: 1/4 of recipe
- Calories: 361
- Sugar: 5g
- Fat: 14g
- Saturated Fat: 2g
- Carbohydrates: 47g
- Fiber: 8g
- Protein: 12g
Keywords: healthy quinoa salad recipes, easy quinoa recipes
If you tried this Mediterranean Quinoa Salad or any other recipe on the blog let me know how you liked it by leaving a comment/rating below! Be sure to follow along on Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook for even more deliciousness!
I made this today! Wow! Absolutely delicious! I substituted artichoke hearts in place of the chickpeas. This is outstanding & I will be making it again, often. Thank you!!
So glad you enjoyed it! Sounds delicious with artichoke hearts!
This salad is so yummy – it is my go to and I love to share it with friends. It is always well received. One question in the nutrition information….the calories given…..are they for the salad only without the dressing? Thank You!
So happy you like it Jennifer! The nutrition includes dressing.
Glad you enjoyed it Lena!
This is so fresh and delicious. Good clean eating!!
Thanks Jackie! Happy you enjoyed it!
The salad dressing is amazing!!! Very fresh and flavorful! It’s my family’s go to salad dressing now. I can eat quinoa salad everyday! I added grapes to give it a little sweetness. Thank you for sharing this recipe!
So glad you enjoyed!
I’m always weary of Dijon and maple syrup for some reason but man this is a wonderful and tasty recipe. Thank you!!
So happy you enjoyed it 🙂
Wow! I just made this and it was super delicious! I omitted the feta + used cauliflower rice instead of quinoa & it still had lots of flavor. Thank you for another fantastic dinner!
So glad you enjoyed it Christin! 🙂
Delicious! Guilt free clean eating! So fresh! Perfect for summer! I need a little more protein so I diced up two chicken breasts and threw them in. So yummy with or without the chicken!
Thanks for the recipe!
So glad you enjoyed Lisa!
One of my favorites dishes. I eat it with chicken shawarma and tzatziki
So happy you love the recipe!
Can’t say enough how much I love this recipe! I make it all the time in the summer to bring to work for lunch . It’s quick, easy and so delicious and refreshing!!
Thanks for the review Linda! So happy you enjoyed the recipe, it’s one of my personal favourites 🙂
I love all of the flavors you used in this recipe!
Absolutely delicious. I’ve made.twoce now and it’s one of my favorite lunches to have on the go! For the dressing how long does it keep in the fridge in a Mason jar?
So happy you enjoyed the recipe Crystal! The dressing should stay fine in the fridge for up to 10 days.
Thanks for this awesome recipe! Deeeeelicious and the possibilities are endless with how many things I got to add. I added artichoke hearts on top of everything else. ♥
Thanks Felicia! So happy you enjoyed it. Sounds delicious with the addition of artichoke hearts, great idea!
I brought this dish to a dinner party and everyone loved it! Left a bit of it at home and my family loved it too! Had to make more for my family the next day! Thank you for the delicious recipe!
So happy to hear everyone enjoyed it, Laura! It’s a great recipe to bring for dinner parties and potlucks!
Very tasty and fun to make! It’s 99 in Florida so it’s great to eat a nice cool salad like this! Amazing flavors
Thanks Laura! Glad you enjoyed!
I’ve made quite a few quinoa salads and this is by far my favorite. It’s possible I will eat it all before Dinner us served!
So happy you love the recipe Mikki! This ones my personal favourite too 🙂
This was so good, thank you! I didn’t have any chickpeas, so substituted black beans. I also had fresh grape tomatoes, so used them. Loved the dressing and like you suggested I put half on this salad, so have the other half for next salad. Looks like I’ll have lunch for the week, yay!
So happy you enjoyed it Kathy!
I made this salad, and everyone at home loved it. Also my 11 year old girl:-) thanks
Thanks Nami, happy you enjoyed!
This was excellent! First time I have made a Quinoa salad that I actually enjoyed eating. Dressing was great will use for other things. I left out the olives but I did add some chopped preserved meyer lemons which we have an abundance of here.
Thanks Melissa! Happy you enjoyed!
I loved this recipe! So easy, delicious and light. Will definitely be making this more during the summer time!!
Happy you enjoyed!
I don’t normally leave reviews or comments but this recipe was fantastic! I followed it exactly other than adding extra feta cheese. I will definitely make it again and again.
Thanks Lani! Happy you enjoyed it! 🙂
Really good and easy!
Thanks Vanessa! Happy you liked the recipe!
Most yummy! The dressing is perfect against the savory of the feta. Will definitely save this one.
Thanks Missy! Happy you enjoyed!
Loved this simple and delicious salad! Looking forward to having it as a go to throughout the year. I subbed out chickpeas and added falafel for work lunches. Yum!
So happy you liked the recipe Tayler!
I subbed fresh cherry tomatoes for the sun dried, added more feta and used the whole can of chickpeas. Super yummy!! Thanks:)
So happy you liked the recipe Katie!
Made this for a co-worker and her husband who are vegan and just welcomed home twin girls! I could not find vegan feta cheese in my area so omitted that. I did not have fresh basil so used fresh parsley and added a little dried basil to the dressing. I also added a heaping (!) tablespoon of drained capers because I love them. 🙂 The salad was great! I am saving to Pinterest and will definitely make again!
So happy you enjoyed the recipe Mandy!
This was my first time making quinoa and this salad was absolutely delicious! I will surely be making it again!
Thanks for the review Tracey! Happy you liked the recipe!
I’m sorry if this is a stupid question…what exactly do you mean by “one bowl” as the serving size? 1 cup? Thank you! 🙂
Hey Megan! It’s about 1/4 of the recipe. For future reference you can check in the recipe card how many servings a recipe makes too. Then nutritional value is based off one serving:)
Would this salad recipe be good for lunch prep? Or would it become spolied?
Hey Melissa! If you want to make this for food prep then I’d recommend leaving the dressing on the side and dressing it before eating. Otherwise it’s a GREAT recipe for food prep!
What is a good substitute for maple syrup? I’m allergic.
Hi Jan, you can use honey or maple syrup or even just a touch of regular sugar!
I really liked this recipe! My Daughter especially. This is a wonderful and healthy. I will be serving this for dinner often.
Thanks Jan! Glad you and your daughter both love the recipe 🙂
Can you substitute dry basil fot fresh basil
Hi Beth, this recipe is already made with fresh basil, so if you mean can you substitute fresh basil for dry basil, the answer is yes, however, I do highly recommend using fresh basil for best results.
Thanks Sarah! Glad you enjoyed!
I make this using Farro instead if quinoa. Delicious!
Thanks for the review Sue, glad you enjoyed!
Made this for dinner last night with kofte. Hubs and I both LOVED it! This might be my new go to salad for parties!
Thanks Sara! Happy you and your hubs both loved it 🙂
Could you leave out the maple syrup or substitute honey?
Hi George, yes you can use honey!
What a perfect meal for a hot summer day, and one that makes for great leftovers! When I originally told my husband and daughter what was for dinner they both looked at me like, “Really?”, but two bites in they both asked if I had doubled the recipe so they could have it for lunch the next day!
Hi Jen, it’s always great to hear when a recipe is a hit with the family! This ones definitely great to have leftovers too 🙂
OMG you won’t believe this. My family hate chick peas and they don’t like quinoa so I made it just for myself. And now they ate it all!! And loved it
That’s amazing Dolly! So happy this recipe converted them to chickpea and quinoa lovers 😉
The first time I tried a quinoa recipe, I gagged while forcing myself to eat it. This one is so good. I want to go back for more already. Thanks for the recipe.
So happy this recipe has changed your mind about quinoa Nicolle 🙂
Quick, easy, and delish!
Any guidance on the serving size for nutrition info? One bowl?
Thanks Glenda!The recipe yields 4 servings. You can view these details in the top of the recipe card 🙂
Just made this salad and it’s delicious. Love the dressing. Substituted Israeli couscous for the quinoa and I do not have any sun-dried tomatoes so cut some fresh but just topped them with it at the end on the plate. This will be a new fav at our home! I’ll be getting some sun-dried tomatoes for next time.
Hi Christie, thank you for the review! I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe! 🙂
Hi. I was just wondering what is alternative I can use in the dressing other then white or red wine vinegar? I have balsamic if that works. Please let me know. Eager to try this. Thank you
Hi Hajjera, you can use lemon juice or apple cider vinegar in place. I wouldn’t recommend using balsamic vinegar for this recipe
I just made this recipe last night for dinner, and we had this again for lunch! Absolutely easy to make, and delicious! Thanks for sharing – this will definitely be a staple for a quick, and flavourful meal.
Hi Ramya, thank you for the review! So glad you enjoyed the recipe. I love making this one for meal prep and having it on hand. It makes great leftovers 🙂
made this within 25mins, super easy, healthy, cheap and delicious!!!!! this is perfect for meal preps for during the week. i will definitely do this more often!! the best quinoa recipe i have tried. thank you so much
Hi Rose, thank you for the review! SO glad to hear you enjoyed the recipe!!
I recently came back from a vacation in Greece, and the hardest part was not eating the delicious food anymore! I decided I couldn’t live without some Greece in my life and I came across this wonderful salad. I have made it everyday since I found it (no joke) and the sun dried tomatoes are an amazing addition. Just love it!
Hi Natalie, first off Greece is amazing! You must have had a wonderful time. So happy to hear you loved the recipe, this is my favourite quinoa salad!