April 9, 2014

Quinoa Avocado Spinach Power Salad


POW! Nutritional punch! Quinoa, tender spinach, and sweet cherry tomatoes join forces with bites of creamy avocado to bring it all together. I find it to be a perfect marriage of filling and energizing. I'm fascinated with the fact that it's so simple, yet the flavors seem so complex as you eat it. My head starts spinning at how many variations there could be. Add some beans for an extra protein punch, change up the veggies, or use fresh lemon juice in the dressing instead of red wine vinegar. Although I probably won't stray too far from this version because my husband raves about how much he loves it. It's our new favorite quinoa dish! Not to mention it makes a rock star take-along cold lunch. Hope you love it too!

For more healthy salads, check out this list of 20 of our favorites!


Vegan, gluten-free

Ingredients
1 cup dry quinoa
2 medium avocados
3 oz. baby spinach
8 oz. cherry tomatoes
3 green onions

{For the dressing}
1-2 cloves garlic, minced (I use 2)
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/8 tsp. salt

Directions
Cook the quinoa according to package directions.
Meanwhile, make the dressing: in a small bowl whisk together ingredients and set aside.
Roughly chop the spinach and place in a large bowl.
Slice the green onions, halve the cherry tomatoes, and dice the avocado.
When quinoa is done cooking, add it to the large bowl with spinach and toss. The heat from the quinoa will lightly wilt the spinach.
Add the green onions, tomatoes, and dressing. Stir to combine.
Add the avocado and lightly toss.
Serve immediately or refrigerate to let flavors blend more.

{Printer Friendly Version}


Update: I ended up making another version of this! 

Come join me on Instagram and share your creations! I love to see what you guys are cooking up! :)

84 comments:

  1. yes! this looks so simple but incredibly delicious! Yum!

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  2. Replies
    1. Hi Angie! Depends on if you're using it as a main dish or side dish. I'd estimate main dish servings to be about 3-5, and side dish servings about 6-8. It can really vary based on your serving size preference :)

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    2. Thanks! Going to make this tonight, since I am not vegan migjt add.some xhicken and call it a main dish!

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    3. Awesome! Thanks for the message - hope you love it!!

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    4. Made this to go with some grilled chicken; fabulous!!! I also added some goat cheese. This is a GREAT salad and easy!!

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    5. Hi Mary Jane! So glad you enjoyed it!!

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  3. Just made this dish. It's real good! :) Thanks!
    I love your recipes. Have made several of them!

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    1. Aw thanks so much! Glad to hear you're enjoying the recipes :)

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  4. This is the kind of salad I could happily eat everyday for lunch. Great dish, Kaitlin!

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    1. Us too!! Thanks so much Dara :)

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    2. This is soooo delish!! I have so much energy after eating this power salad. This is a must try!!

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    3. Aww yay! Glad it energized you too!! Thanks for the sweet message :)

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  5. If you are having this the next day should you eat it cold or heat it up?

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    1. Hi Sarah! I always eat the leftovers cold :)

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  6. I loved this salad! Even my little 7 year old liked it. Very tasty. I ended up doubling the spinach. Packing up leftovers for hubby's lunch. Thanks for the quick easy meal, the only thing I didn't have on hand was the avacado. :)

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    1. Yay Shan! Glad you all enjoyed it, and I LOVE that you doubled the spinach!! :D

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  7. Hello,

    New to the site but was wondering if you post nutrition information?

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    1. Hi and welcome! Unfortunately I don't provide nutritional stats, but if you'd like to calculate your own you can try this website:
      http://caloriecount.about.com/cc/recipe_analysis.php
      I've heard it's pretty straightforward and easy to use. Hope that helps and that you enjoy the recipes you find here! :)

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  8. This sounds great! I would love to make it and portion it out for my lunches this week. Will it stay good refrigerated for a few days, or is it a dish that doesn't last more than a day or two?

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    1. Hi Jennie! Yes! I've kept this in the fridge for about 4 days before. The avocado will brown a little so if that's an issue you could leave it out and add it right before serving. I don't mind, so I just do it all in the beginning :) Hope you enjoy it!!

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  9. I just finished making this! I had to substitute cucumber for avocado and added sugar to the dressing. I can't wait for my coworkers to try it.

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    1. Hi Cecille! Wonderful! Thanks for the message - hope you and your coworkers enjoy! :)

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  10. Serving Size 164 g
    Amount Per Serving
    Calories 292Calories from Fat 174
    % Daily Value*
    Total Fat 19.4g30%
    Saturated Fat 3.6g18%
    Trans Fat 0.0g
    Cholesterol 0mg0%
    Sodium 71mg3%
    Potassium 608mg17%
    Total Carbohydrates 25.7g9%
    Dietary Fiber 7.3g29%
    Sugars 1.1g
    Protein 6.2g
    Vitamin A 27% • Vitamin C 28%
    Calcium 3% • Iron 43%

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  11. Yum! I can't wait to try this :)

    xo,
    Allie
    http://lunavida23.blogspot.com/

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  12. Based on this recipe making 3 servings:

    Nutrition Facts
    Serving Size 329 g
    Amount Per Serving
    Calories 580Calories from Fat 351
    % Daily Value*
    Total Fat 39.0g60%
    Saturated Fat 7.2g36%
    Trans Fat 0.0g
    Cholesterol 0mg0%
    Sodium 137mg6%
    Potassium 1344mg38%
    Total Carbohydrates 51.6g17%
    Dietary Fiber 14.7g59%
    Sugars 3.2g
    Protein 12.0g
    Vitamin A 73% • Vitamin C 59%
    Calcium 7% • Iron 86%


    Nutritional Analysis
    Good points
    No cholesterol
    Low in sodium
    Low in sugar
    High in iron
    High in vitamin A
    Very high in vitamin B6

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  13. We made this for dinner last night, and it was fabulous! Used red bell pepper instead of tomato, since daughter doesn't care for tomato, and it added a nice kick. Thanks for sharing this easy and delicious recipe! Doesn't hurt that it's good for you, too! <3

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    1. Hi Roni! Yay! I've never tried this with bell pepper - what a great idea! So glad you enjoyed it, thanks so much for the sweet message :)

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  14. Hi Kaitlin! Just wanted to say that this recipe was absolutely delicious and has filled my lunch all week. I loved this so much I had to share it with all the readers on my blog. Thank you for sharing - I cannot wait to try more of your recipes.

    http://www.sugarandroses.net/sug-r/2015/3/3/superfood-quinoa-salad-with-avocado-and-spinach

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    1. Hey Danielle! Happy to hear you enjoyed it so much - your photos are gorgeous! :) Hope you love any other recipes you try!

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  15. We ate all our spinach in last night's green salad so I cubed up some zucchini. Otherwise, followed your recipe to use the rest of my leftover quinoa. PERFECT!!! mmm

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    1. Hi Carolyn! YAY - so glad you enjoyed! Great to hear you adapted it based on what you had :) Wishing you a lovely week!

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  16. I used WW recipe builder and came up with 8 points for 5 servings and 6 points for 6 servings.

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  17. OMG, this is sooooooo good! Thank you for sharing

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    1. Hey Jodi!! Aww thanks :) So happy you enjoyed it! Wishing you a lovely weekend!

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  18. Just made this and it is amazing!

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    1. Yay Candace!! Glad you enjoyed! Have a great weekend :)

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  19. Do you think I could use Balsamic instead of red wine vinegar for the dressing?

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    1. Hi Jody! YUM - I love balsamic! I bet that'd work great in this too! Let me know how it goes :)

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  20. The Quinoa Avocado Spinach Power Salad (QASPS) :)sounds delicious. You sound very similar to me.:)

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    1. Haha - yay!! Hope you love it :) I find it to be so energizing!

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  21. I just made this tonight--so light and refreshing! Awesome. Thanks!

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    1. Aww, great to hear Holly! Glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for the sweet message :)

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  22. Replies
    1. YAY Samantha!! So great to hear - happy summer!!! :D

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  23. I saw this on Pinterest and I was so excited that I had all the ingredients on hand. I made it right away for lunch. It was soooo good! Thanks for the awesome recipe. I'll be making this over and over again.

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    1. Score!! I love when I find a recipe and already have all the ingredients on hand! :) Thanks for the sweet message, so glad to hear you enjoyed it!!

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  24. I don't have any quinoa on hand but have everything else! Do you think brown rice would work?

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    1. Hey Jenny! Sorry for the delayed response - I've never tried this with rice! It may be a little weighed down, but still could work :) Would LOVE to hear if you give it a go!!

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  25. Love this! Wish you had a print button for your recipes.

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    1. Thanks! And there's a "printer friendly" link right under the directions! :)

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  26. This was super good! Thank you!

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    1. Aww, YAY Kim!! Glad you enjoyed it - thanks for coming back to let me know! :)

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  27. Enjoying every bite of it right now!! Pleasantly surprised!! Thank you!!

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  28. This was amazing! Even my 7 year old loved it! I doubled the spinach and added lemon … YUUUUMM! Thank you for a great recipe!

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    1. Hey Veronica! Yay for you and your daughter both loving it! Great call doubling the spinach and adding lemon :) Yum!!! Thanks for the sweet message, have an awesome week!

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  29. My family and I recently started eating more healthy foods, and this recipe was one I saw on Pinterest that I just had to try. It looked so delicious. We had this for dinner tonight and it tasted just as delicious as it looked! I added chickpeas to make it a bit more filling. Like you point out in your post, it's amazing how such simple ingredients can create such complex and delicious flavors. My daughter had three servings. I'm excited to try some of your other recipes, thanks for all the great, healthy inspiration!

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    1. Aw, thanks so much Stephanie :) I LOVE your addition of chickpeas! Great idea, definitely doing that next time! Hope you enjoy any other recipes you try!

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  30. Doing a 10 Day Clean Eating Challenge and this was today's lunch. YUM! Thanks so much for sharing! (Your website and salads are playing a big part in my challenge.)

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    1. Awesome Natalie!!! And thanks for the kind words about the site :) Hope you're enjoying your challenge!

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  31. Just made this made this for dinner tonight and It was awesome!!!!!! Very light on the tummy and fulfilling at the same time. I added almonds to mine.

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    1. Woohoo!! So fun to hear. And I never thought to add almonds - that'd be such a nice crunch! :)

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  32. This looks delicious! Do you have any suggestions for a substitute if I don't have red wine vinegar? Thanks so much!

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    1. Hi Leslie! Lemon juice would be a great substitute - hope you enjoy! :)

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  33. i love this recipe never tried quinoa before but thanks to this i love it had to change eating habits and this works well thanks for sharing

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    1. Aw, so great to hear :) Glad you enjoyed your first quinoa experience! Have a wonderful weekend!

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  34. Great recipe! I found adding fresh lemon juice prevented the avocados from turning brown if you want leftovers for the following days.

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    1. Oh and I used the tricolor quinoa which made it look even prettier!

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    2. Yes and yes!!! Great call adding lemon juice! I definitely need to try this with tricolor quinoa :) So glad you enjoyed it - have an awesome week!

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  35. I was so late to shop but when I saw this recipe I was oh yeah we have all this in the cupboard and frig just need to run to the corner store for the green onions yay!I am going to have it with pollock delish can not wait thanks a bunch!

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    1. Haha I love when you find a recipe and have (almost) all the ingredients already! Hope you enjoy!! :)

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  36. I made this for a picnic. It is very good. Next time I will double the spinach and add lemon juice or zest to the dressing. I love that it's good made ahead. Thanks for the recipe!

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    1. Hi Karon! So glad you enjoyed it for your picnic :) Great call adding more spinach and the lemon addition for next time - yum! Have a lovely weekend!!

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  37. I love this. Thank you. I sprinkle a little feta before serving. It tastes better cold.

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    1. Great to hear! I agree - the flavors really intensify after chilling in the fridge :) Have a beautiful weekend!

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