Roasted Sweet Potato & Spinach Quinoa Salad
The majority of the recipes I share are Whole30 and paleo, but quinoa is something I allow myself occasionally. Quinoa salad recipes show up routinely for me in the summertime because it is so perfect to throw in the cooler with some plastic spoons and bowls and off you go. Protein can be added to any quinoa salad and you have a meal ready for that first night of camping, or a picnic on the beach, and it is a very impressionable potluck dish that will keep your family and friends eating on the healthy side.
So here we go with a great tasting, simple, and healthy salad . . . with a little quinoa ☺️
4 cups orange sweet potatoes, cut in 1" cubes (about 2 sweet potatoes)
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
4 cups fresh spinach, chopped (about 6 oz)
2 large avocado's, diced
1/2 cup dried unsweetened cranberries
2 Tbsp chopped fresh basil
3 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1 1/2 Tbsp dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup olive oil
3 Tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
Sidenote - when you make the lemon vinaigrette, you might as well go ahead and make a double or triple batch. It's a great salad dressing to enjoy for the rest of the week! It can be used over a green salad, drizzled over fresh steamed green beans or broccoli, or used as a marinade for your favorite protein.
Back on track now - preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Rub your sweet potato chunks with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper (the same way we roast all of your other lovely vegetables) and roast for about 20 minutes, turning a couple of times while they are cooking.
While the sweet potatoes are cooking, prepare the quinoa. Combine the quinoa and water, bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. You can substitute the water with vegetable or chicken broth for another little pop of flavor. Fluff the quinoa with a fork when it is done and set aside. Allow both the quinoa and sweet potatoes to cool, and then combine them in a large bowl.
Whisk together all of the ingredients for the vinaigrette and store in the refrigerator.
Remove stems and chop the spinach into about 1 inch strips. Add spinach, diced avocado, dried cranberries, and basil to the salad.
When you are ready to serve, add the dressing and carefully stir together.
Pretty easy huh? This salad makes a great presentation, it is simple to pack along, and tastes great! If you are a quinoa salad fan, check out these recipes for some other variations -