Gluten Free Recipes/ Rice and Grains/ Salads and Sides/ Vegetarian Recipes

Southwest Quinoa Salad

Southwest Quinoa Salad by

Do you love Southwest flavors? Well here is a delicious Southwest Quinoa Salad for you to try!  BBQ sauce, corn, black beans, tomatoes and avocado give this quinoa salad its Southwest flavors everyone adores. This vegetarian version is a healthy and gluten-free salad that is fresh tasting and loaded with protein. It’s a perfect salad to bring to a summer barbecue or a picnic.

We found out that May is National Salad Month! And what a perfect month to celebrate! We love making salads this time of year and especially ones that are truly good for you.  This Southwest quinoa salad is not only loaded with protein, it’s  packed with wonderful nutrients including vitamins A, C, along with calcium and iron.

I was given a can of Redpack Petite Diced Tomatoes the other day and decided to try them in this salad.  They are sweet tasting already diced tomatoes and add the fresh salsa flavor needed in this quinoa salad.  Since the barbecue sauce adds the sweet and hickory smoke flavors, I didn’t need to add any salt or pepper to it.  But by all means, you can.

Once the quinoa has been cooked, the rest of the ingredients are easily added and mixed into a large bowl, then chilled before serving.

Quinoa salads are incredibly simple to make and can be made up to one day ahead.  This one actually took me less than 20 minutes to make, and the outcome was really good.  It makes enough to feed a crowd.

My daughter Lizzy loved this salad and enhanced its flavor by adding a touch of fresh lemon juice.  It was the perfect finishing touch to make this recipe even more delicious and fresh tasting.

Need to add more protein?  Try adding in some shredded or diced cooked pork or chicken to this salad, about 2 cups is good enough.  It’s also a great way to use leftover chicken or pork from the night before.

For more quinoa salads, try these: Quinoa Tuna Salad and our Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad.

Southwest Quinoa Salad

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups of vegetable broth (or chicken broth)
  • 1 (28-ounce) can RedPack petite diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 Tbsp. barbeque sauce of your choice (I used Kansas City Masterpiece)
  • 1 avocado – chopped
  • 3 green onions – chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped cilantro
  • salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
  • Optional: 2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

Cook the quinoa with vegetable broth, follow the directions on the box, then set quinoa aside to cool for 5 minutes.

In a large mixing bowl, combine corn, black beans, tomatoes, green onions, and cooked quinoa.  Stir in barbecue sauce and 1/2 the chopped avocado.  Add salt and fresh cracked pepper, to taste.

Transfer to a serving bowl or platter. Top with cilantro and the remaining chopped avocado.  Cover with clear wrap and chill for 1 hour or more before serving.
Optional: Stir in fresh lemon juice just before you serve it.

Yields: 6 to 8 servings

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We hope you all had a relaxing weekend and Mother’s Day, we certainly did!
Thanks for stopping by!
Anna and Liz

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  • Reply
    Tricia Buice
    May 12, 2015 at 11:45 pm

    I bet that BBQ sauce really holds on to the quinoa – what a great combination and this is a beautiful salad. Glad you had a good mother's day 🙂

  • Reply
    May 13, 2015 at 1:05 am

    Thank you Tricia! The salad is so incredibly light and tasty – we enjoyed eating it for days.

  • Reply
    Sue/the view from great island
    May 13, 2015 at 6:43 pm

    This reminds me of my favorite Chipotle bowls, only healthier, love it!

    • Reply
      May 14, 2015 at 1:35 am

      Thanks Sue and I bet your chipotle bowls are delicious too!

  • Reply
    Abbe@This is How I Cook
    May 15, 2015 at 4:53 am

    What a great recipe. I love the BBQ sauce in it!

    • Reply
      May 18, 2015 at 8:54 pm

      So do we! So cool that it's made with quinoa – we hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

  • Reply
    May 15, 2015 at 11:29 am

    LOVE these flavors!! This sounds incredibly tasty.

    • Reply
      May 18, 2015 at 8:55 pm

      It is Joanne, you have to try it and let us know what you think!

  • Reply
    SavoringTime in the Kitchen
    May 15, 2015 at 9:31 pm

    I am so glad that quinoa has become so well known and used today! I love it and know I would love this salad too with all of those SW flavors. So pretty too!

    • Reply
      May 18, 2015 at 8:56 pm

      We are glad too Sue and the flavors make this quinoa so much more enjoyable. Thanks for stopping by!

  • Reply
    Roz Corieri Paige
    May 30, 2015 at 4:55 pm

    Such a flavor-packed salad! I'm pinning this to my quinoa board for a new recipe idea! Thanks Liz and Anna!

  • Reply
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