Grain salads (like this vegan quinoa salad) aren't really salads in the typical sense of the term (there is nary a green leaf in sight), but they do have a nice, cool, fibrous quality to them that is reminiscent of your favorite mixed veggie bowl, if not a bit more satisfying.
The roasted carrots, fluffy quinoa, and zesty dressing used for this vegan quinoa salad make for a dynamic and filling meal or side dish, depending on your needs.
Although quinoa can sometimes feel a bit overdone (come on, how many times do you want to eat a steamed grain and lentil buddha bowl?) it feels reinvented here thanks to the tanginess of fermented cabbage and the sweet addition of roasted carrots that stick to the quinoa and slightly bind everything together.
Not only does this vegan quinoa salad taste amazing--it's full of healthy fats (sesame and pistachio), vitamins (carrots and sauerkraut), pro and prebiotics, and even some protein. (Although top the dish with a bit of sliced vegan chicken or tofu if you are craving a bit extra.)
To top it all off, the fats in this salad help your body absorb the vitamins in the dish, and the fiber helps slow the absorption of any sugars, so you are left with lasting energy and the glow of good health (or maybe beta carotene).
Whip a batch up and let us know what you think!
1. Preheat oven to 400ºF.
2. Wash carrots and place them whole on baking sheet, drizzled with 1 tablespoon of sesame oil.
3. Put in oven for 35-40 minutes (until tender and slightly caramelized.
4. Meanwhile, bring 2 cups of water to boil.
5. Add quinoa and a pinch of salt.
6. Lower heat to simmer and cover.
7. Cook for about 15 minutes, until fluffy.
8. Transfer to mixing bowl and stir through remaining oil, sauerkraut, mustard, and pepper.
9. Slice up carrots once cooked and mix into quinoa.
10. Serve into bowls and garnish with pistachios.
Quincy is an NC-based college student who is passionate about leading a healthy and compassionate life. Aside from classes, she fills her time with cooking, writing, travel, and yoga. You can find more from her on her blog Shugurcän and on Instagram.