Quinoa and Tofu Salad
This refreshing and nourishing salad is perfect for any occasion and season! Give it a try and let us know what you think on our Challenge 22 Facebook and don’t forget to sign up for the Challenge, as well!
- 1 cup quinoa, rinsed in a fine-mesh colander
- 2 cups water
- 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained, or 1 ½ cups cooked chickpeas (or 15 oz)
- 300g package of tofu, diced (or 10 oz)
- 1 ½ cups roughly chopped baby spinach
- ½ cup chopped fresh parsley
- ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro (or additional parsley)
- ⅓ cup chopped green onion (green parts only)
- ¼ cup thinly sliced Kalamata olives
- ⅓ cup toasted pumpkin seeds
For the Tahini dressing:
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 4 tablespoons lemon juice, to taste
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- 1 large clove garlic, pressed or minced
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- To cook the quinoa: Combine the rinsed quinoa and the water in a medium saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, then decrease the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook until the quinoa has absorbed all of the water, about 15 minutes, reducing heat as time goes on to maintain a gentle simmer. Remove from heat, cover, and let the quinoa rest for 5 minutes, which gives it time to fluff up.
- Meanwhile, roast the pumpkin seeds in a small skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently, until fragrant and making little popping noises, about 5 minutes. Transfer them to a large serving bowl to cool for a few minutes (we’ll add more to the bowl in a minute).
- To make the dressing: In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, 3 tablespoons lemon juice, tahini, garlic, salt and several twists of freshly ground pepper. Taste, and add up to 1 more tablespoon of lemon juice and/or more pepper, if necessary (I like my dressing pretty zippy for this salad, so I used the full 4 tablespoons).
- Once the quinoa is ready to use, add it to the large bowl. Add the chickpeas, spinach, parsley, cilantro, green onion, tofu, Kalamata olives and toasted pepitas. Drizzle the dressing over the salad, and toss to combine. Serve immediately, or let it cool and refrigerate for later. This salad keeps well in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 3 days.
- CHANGE IT UP: You could add shredded carrots and/or top with diced avocado.
- You can sub the tofu for seitan or marinated tempeh (cook the tempeh with the marinade before)
- Try our weekly plant based meal plan for more healthy ideas!
For more recipes and tips from experienced mentors and certified dietitians, join Challenge 22 for free!
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