No Meat Zone Recipes: Quinoa Salad with Buckwheat and Cranberries

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Quinoa Salad with Buckwheat and Cranberries

This salad makes a perfect offering to a buffet table, or a nice light supper. The chewy, solid texture of the grains here works well with the slightly spicy, sweet dressing; the salad’s flavors develop even more and the cranberries plump a little by the second day (if it lasts that long). When I first created the recipe I conducted a nutritional analysis and discovered that one serving (about a cup) of this salad offers 12 grams of protein–enough for a substantial main course in anyone’s books.

  • 1 cup dry quinoa (rinse if you remember)
  • 1/2 c. dry buckwheat groats (kasha)
  • 3 c. water
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, lightly toasted
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries or cherries
  • 2 medium stalks celery, chopped
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds (toasted or raw)
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley or cilantro

  • 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp. flax or hemp oil
  • 3-4 Tbsp. agave nectar
  • juice of 1/2-1 lemon (to taste)
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg

Pour water into a pot and bring to the boil over high heat. Rinse quinoa well and add to pot with the buckwheat. Reduce heat to low, then cover and simmer without disturbing for 20 minutes. Uncover (all the water should be absorbed) and let sit until cool. Fluff with a fork and turn the quinoa into a large bowl. (Note: for a “cleaner” look, you can boil the grains separately from each other, then combine in a bowl to make the salad).

Add walnuts, dried cranberries, celery, sunflower seeds, scallion, and cilantro and toss to mix.

In a separate bowl, mix together all the dressing ingredients with a whisk. Pour over salad and toss to coat evenly. May be served immediately or covered and refrigerated overnight.

Makes 8-10 servings.

Ricki Heller, PhD, RHN | @RickiHeller
Formerly the owner of a vegan bakery, Ricki adapted those recipes for her cookbook, Sweet Freedom: Desserts You'll Love without Wheat, Eggs, Dairy or Refined Sugar. She also writes articles about food for various publications and online sites. Find Ricki posting delicious, healthy recipes on her blog, Diet, Dessert and Dogs.

Photo credit: Ricki Heller

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