Mediterranean quinoa salad is simple to make and loaded with texture and flavor. It is a perfect summer side dish featuring fresh tomatoes and cucumbers.
This fresh salad is perfect for summer. It is loaded with fresh vegetables, protein filled quinoa, a pop of fresh herbs and a bit of salty feta.
Summer’s bounty is here! It is time to make the most of it.
The tomatoes and cucumbers are in their peek, so it is easy to make tasty and healthy side dishes with them. One of my favorite go-to salads is just some fresh onion, tomato and cucumbers with a bit of vinaigrette and feta.
It is so fresh and easy to throw together. So I thought I would do a combination of that and caprese quinoa salad and this is what it turned into.
It is a well balanced salad that has loads of texture and bright flavors. The salty feta balances it all out.
It would be perfect for bringing to a potluck or picnic. Or if you are a meal planner, make a batch on the weekend and have it for lunch throughout the week.
That is what I did. We enjoyed the salad as a side dish with some grilled chicken on Sunday and then I packaged up the leftovers in small containers for easy take to work lunches.
Easy additions and substitutions
The best part about salads like this is they are easily customizable. Make it match your tastes and preferences.
I used fresh parsley in this version, but basil would be amazing as well. Or use some chives or a mixture of whatever fresh herbs you have on hand.
I love adding a can of chickpeas to salads like this. I had originally planned on adding some, but there weren’t any cans in the pantry.
Of course I picked some up my very next trip to the grocery store. Now I’m ready for the next batch!
If you are an olive fan, toss some in. That’s a sure way to make sure it doesn’t get eaten at my house though. 😉
You could also toss in some cooked chicken and make a whole meal out of the salad. Do whatever your heart desires.
Should quinoa salad be served hot or cold?
Quinoa salad should be served cold. Cook the quinoa ahead of time and let it cool before you add the produce. That will keep it from cooking any of the vegetables and making them soft. It is a great make ahead salad as well. It stores and transports well.
What is the trick for cooking quinoa?
Quinoa needs to be rinsed before it is cooked. That helps to get rid of the saponins which can taste bitter or soapy. Place the quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer and rinse well before using.
More tasty summer salads
Wilted lettuce with bacon is the perfect way to eat leaf lettuce from the garden. The warm bacon dressing is a little sweet, tangy and savory all at once. It’s the perfect mix.
Grape orzo salad combines a hint of sweet grapes with bright lemon juice, savory feta cheese and more. It is the perfect side dish for grilled meats or seafood.
Texture and flavor abound in Mizuna green and quinoa salad. Don’t worry if you can’t find mizuna greens, kale would be a fabulous substitute.
Fresh summer vegetables like corn, cucumbers and tomatoes come together to make the perfect summer corn salad.
Or whip up a blueberry summer salad with greens and all of the good stuff.
Did you make this recipe? Please leave a review in the recipe card.
Mediterranean Quinoa Salad With Tomatoes and Cucumbers
- 1½ cups quinoa uncooked
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup diced onion
- 2 cups chopped tomato
- 2 cups chopped cucumber
- ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper
- 4 oz crumbled feta cheese
- ¼ cup fresh parsley or basil
- Cook quinoa according to package directions. Set aside to cool.
- Put balsamic vinegar, olive oil and onions in a large bowl. Allow onions to soak for a couple of minutes. This will help to soften the onion flavor a bit.
- When the quinoa is at room temperature, add remaining ingredients to the bowl. Toss to combine.
- Adjust the salt and pepper to your taste then refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to a week.