A hearty roasted vegetable quinoa salad that makes a good vegetarian lunch or a lovely side dish for barbecues, picnics, potlucks or parties. Easily made vegan by omitting the feta cheese.
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 2 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
- several grinds of fresh ground black pepper
- 1 cup raw quinoa, rinsed
- 1 small red onion, peeled, halved and thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
- 3/4 cup water
- 2 teaspoons white sugar
- 1 bunch of thin asparagus, ends trimmed
- 1 bunch of tender stem broccoli (broccolini)
- 1 small bunch slender young carrots, peeled. (see below for substitutions)
- 1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces.
- 3-4 handfuls of arugula roughly chopped (about one cup, packed), optional
- 3/4 cup of pitted green olives, sliced or quartered
- 2 ounces (or more, to taste) of good quality feta cheese, roughly chopped or crumbled (1/2 cup)
You will need one or two rimmed baking sheets (veggies need to spread out in a single layer)
Preheat the oven to 400ºF.
- To make the vinaigrette, in a small bowl whisk the lemon juice (2 tablespoons), mustard (1 teaspoon), salt (1/4 teaspoon) and olive oil (2 tablespoons) until combined.
- To cook the quinoa, follow the package instructions, adding a pinch or two of salt to the cooking water. Transfer cooked quinoa to a large mixing bowl to cool.
- To make the quick pickled red onions, place the sliced onions in a heat-proof bowl. In a small saucepan bring the vinegar (1/2 cup), water (3/4 cup), sugar (2 teaspoons) and salt (1/2 teaspoon) to a boil. Stir until the sugar is dissolved. Pour the hot liquid over the onions and let them steep and cool for 15-20 minutes. Drain them and add to the bowl with the quinoa. These can be made up to two weeks ahead and refrigerated until ready to use. Bring to room temp before using.
- In a large bowl, toss the asparagus, broccolini, carrots and zucchini, with 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Spread them out in a single layer on two baking sheets. Sprinkle them with salt (2 teaspoons) and pepper, to taste. Roast in the top and bottom shelves of the oven for 20-25 minutes or until the vegetables are just tender but still retaining some of their crunch, switching the position of the trays after 15 minutes.
- To assemble the salad, add the sliced olives, chopped arugula and vinaigrette to the bowl with the quinoa and onions. Toss to coat. Correct the seasoning with salt and pepper to taste. Add the roasted vegetables and toss again. Transfer the salad to a platter and top with feta. Serve warm or at room temperature.
MAKE IT DAIRY FREE/VEGAN: Omit the feta. Still delicious! Garnish with lemon zest or whole green olives, if you like.
SUBSTITUTIONS: If you can't find baby carrots, you can use regular carrots but look for slim ones. If they're fatter than 1/2-inch in diameter, slice them in half lengthwise so they cook through in the same amount of time as the other vegetables.
Prep Ahead Strategies: Cook the quinoa up to a day ahead and store in the fridge, covered. Bring to room temp before using. Prepare the pickled red onions up to two weeks ahead and store, covered in the fridge. Bring to room temp before using.
- Prep Time: 25 min
- Cook Time: 25 min
- Category: Side dish, Salad
- Method: oven
- Cuisine: Mediterannean
Keywords: quinoa salad with vegetables, quinoa with roasted vegetables and feta