Cilantro Lime Quinoa Side Dish

Cilantro Lime Quinoa in a bowl with spoon.  It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood

This Cilantro Lime Quinoa Side Dish is fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice.  Just 25 minutes to cook the Quinoa, 3 ingredients, and this is yours too!

Cilantro Lime Quinoa in a bowl with spoon with lime and cilantro on counter. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood

Quinoa is truly a superfood!

Quinoa, pronounced KEEN-wah, is actually an edible seed that is referred to as a Superfood because of its health benefits.  It’s high in complete protein including 8 amino acids and it has more fiber than most other grains.  It also has Iron, Manganese, Lysine, and magnesium.

The texture is similar to a couscous, but a little more fluffy.  It has a mild, slightly nutty taste, similar to brown rice.  However, because it’s so mild, it really absorbs any flavors you mix with it.  

Try these other easy and delicious Quinoa Recipes!

Cilantro Lime Quinoa in a bowl with spoon with lime and cilantro on counter. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood

Quick note!  This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase from them.  This commission is what helps me keep this blog afloat :).  But, I also share these links because I have used the products, genuinely love them, and want you to know exactly what I used. 

PREP-AHEAD TO MAKE YOUR CILANTRO LIME QUINOA SIDE DISH

We are all extremely busy and making dinner during the week can be overwhelming. Here are the steps you prepare in the day(s) in advance and store in the fridge as your meal Kit… (See the recipe below for more details) 

Well my friends, not much to this one, so make the entire thing ahead!  Woo hoo!

To start, rinse the quinoa in a strainer under water.  Then cook it according to package instructions.

Rinsing Quinoa in strainer for Cilantro Lime Quinoa. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood

Boiling water with Quinoa for Cilantro Lime Quinoa. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood

Cooked Quinoa for Cilantro Lime Quinoa. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood

While the Quinoa is cooking, you can zest the Lime and chop the cilantro.Zesting lime for Cilantro Lime Quinoa. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood

Chopped cilantro on cutting board for Cilantro Lime Quinoa. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood

When the Quinoa is done, fluff it up with a fork. Then add the Lime Zest, a teaspoon of lime juice, the cilantro, and olive oil. Mix to combine and then taste for seasoning. Add salt as needed. Top with just about any veggie or protein and enjoy!

Chopped cilantro and lime zest on quinoa in pot for Cilantro Lime Quinoa. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood

Cilantro Lime Quinoa in a pot. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood

ENJOY!

😍 Carrie

Cilantro Lime Quinoa in a bowl with spoon with lime and cilantro on counter. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood

Cilantro Lime Quinoa

Cilantro Lime Quinoa is fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American, Mexican
Keyword gluten free, healthy recipes, quinoa
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4 Servings
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Uncooked Quinoa
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Lime Juice
  • 1 Lime, Zested
  • 3 Tbsp Cilantro, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Instructions

  1. Start by rinsing the quinoa thoroughly in a strainer and then cooking it according to package directions making sure to add a tsp of salt to the water. 

    Cooked Quinoa for Cilantro Lime Quinoa. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood
  2. While the Quinoa is cooking, you can zest the Lime and chop the cilantro.

    Zesting lime for Cilantro Lime Quinoa. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood
  3. When the Quinoa is done, fluff it up with a fork.  Then add the Lime Zest, a teaspoon of lime juice, the cilantro, and olive oil.  Mix to combine and then taste for seasoning.  Add salt as needed.  Top with just about any veggie or protein and enjoy!

    Chopped cilantro and lime zest on quinoa in pot for Cilantro Lime Quinoa. It's fluffy, nutty, citrusy, salty, and the perfect accompaniment for any protein or vegetable!  With just a few simple ingredients, you can make this fantastic healthier alternative to rice. #quinoa #quinoarecipes #sides #healthyfood

Quinoa and Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas and Creamy Lemon Dressing

Close up of bowl of Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale
Bowl of Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

Welcome to my breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks in between OBSESSION!  This Quinoa and Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas and Creamy Lemon Dressing has everything you could ever want in a meal.  It’s fresh, light, and bright from the lemon dressing, kale, scallion, and red pepper.  Then it’s hearty, nutty, and salty from the quinoa, roasted chickpeas and Feta Cheese.  And then you get a burst of fresh sweetness from the pomegranate seeds.  And all of the different textures will make your mouth so happy!    

Roasted Chickpeas on pan for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale
Fork with bite of Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate,Feta, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

The Perfect Healthy Meal Prep Recipe

Not only is this delicious and good for you, but it’s incredibly versatile and can be made well in advance to enjoy all week!  

Quinoa, pronounced KEEN-wah, is actually an edible seed that is referred to as a Superfood because of its health benefits.  It’s high in complete protein including 8 amino acids and it has more fiber than most other grains.  It also has Iron, Manganese, Lysine, and magnesium.

The texture is similar to a couscous, but a little more fluffy.  It has a mild, slightly nutty taste, similar to brown rice.  However, because it’s so mild, it really absorbs any flavors you mix with it.  Check out more Quinoa Recipes!

Pomegranate cut in half on plate for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

Pomegranate Seeds are also so good for you!  They are loaded with nutrients, have antioxidants, have anti-inflammatory benefits, and so much more.  Read more about the many benefits of pomegranate seeds. 

Close up of bowl of Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

Quick note!  This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase from them.  This commission is what helps me keep this blog afloat :).  But, I also share these links because I have used the products, genuinely love them, and want you to know exactly what I used. 

PREP-AHEAD TO MAKE YOUR QUINOA & KALE SALAD

Red pepper, Kale, Pomegranate, and Quinoa for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

Here’s the wonderful news about this recipe…the entire thing can be made ahead!  Then you can eat it throughout the week! (See the recipe below for more details)

It starts with the quinoa, which you first want to thoroughly rinse with warm water in a strainer.  Then you cook it according to package instructions (very similar to rice).  Let it cool in the fridge. 

By the way, you can make extra and freeze quinoa.  Just spread it out on a sheet pan and freeze, then scoop it into a freezer bag/container. Check out more Freezer Hacks to Save Dinner here!

Water rinsing quinoa in strainer for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

Cooked quinoa in pot for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

While the Quinoa is cooking, you can also roast the chickpeas.  Roasting chickpeas gives them a crispy nuttier flavor and really transforms them into little bites of wonder.

Make the roasted chickpeas by first draining and rinsing them in cold water. Pat dry with paper towel and place on the lined baking sheet. Drizzle with Olive oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Toss to coat each chickpea with seasoning. Place in preheated oven and roast for 25 minutes.

Roasted Chickpeas on pan for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

Then make the dressing by combining the sour cream, lemon zest, lemon juice, honey, yellow mustard, parsley. Add a dash of salt and fresh ground pepper. Taste for seasoning and add more salt & pepper if needed.

Dressing ingredients in bowl on counter with lemon off to side for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

Dressing mixed in bowl on counter with lemon off to side for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

While the quinoa and chickpeas are cooking, prep all of the veggies! Dice the red pepper and chop the kale. Finely slice the scallion.

Chopping Kale for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

Chopped Red Pepper and Kale for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

Slice the Pomegranate in half and then holding one half upside down, hit the back with a mallet or the back of your knife to knock out the seeds.

Cutting a Pomegranate for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

Knife hitting Pomegranate to get seeds out for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

To a large mixing bowl, add the cool quinoa, chickpeas, kale, red pepper, pomegranate, scallion, crumbled feta, and dressing. Then mix to combine.

All ingredients in bowl for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

Quinoa & Kale Salad in clear glass bowl with spoon with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

ENJOY!

😍 Carrie

Close up of bowl of Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale

Bowl of Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale
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Quinoa and Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas and Creamy Lemon Dressing

This Quinoa and Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas and Creamy Lemon Dressing is everything!  It's fresh, light, and bright from the lemon dressing, kale, scallions, and red pepper.  Then it's hearty, nutty, and salty from the quinoa, roasted chickpeas and Feta Cheese.  And then you get a burst of fresh sweetness from the pomegranate seeds.
Course Main Course, Salad
Cuisine American
Keyword healthy dinner, healthy recipes, kale, quinoa, salad
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Cooling Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 445 kcal
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

Creamy Lemon Dressing

  • 1 Lemon
  • 1 tbls Sour Cream
  • 1/2 tsp Honey
  • 1 tsp Yellow Mustard
  • 1 tsp Italian Parsley finely chopped
  • Salt to taste
  • Fresh Ground Pepper to taste

Roasted Chickpeas

  • 15 oz Chickpeas 1 can
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Garlic powder
  • 1 tsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Other Salad Ingredients

  • 1 cup Quinoa, uncooked
  • 1/2 cup Red Pepper, diced
  • 2 cups Kale, sliced
  • 1/4 cup Scallions, sliced
  • 1/2 cup Feta, crumbled
  • 1 Pomegranate seeds only

Instructions

  1. Start by rinsing the quinoa thoroughly in a strainer and then cooking it according to package directions. Let cool in the fridge.

    Water rinsing quinoa in strainer for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale
  2. Make the dressing by first, zesting the Lemon and then cut in half and add the juice from only half of the lemon to a mixing bowl. Also to the bowl, add the sour cream, lemon zest, honey, yellow mustard, parsley.  Whisk the ingredients together. Add a dash of salt and fresh ground pepper. Taste for seasoning and add more salt & pepper if needed.

    Dressing ingredients in bowl on counter with lemon off to side for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale
  3. Make the roasted chickpeas by first draining and rinsing them in cold water. Pat dry with paper towel and place on the lined baking sheet. Drizzle with Olive oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Toss to coat each chickpea with seasoning. Place in preheated oven and roast for 25 minutes.

    Roasted Chickpeas on pan for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale
  4. While the quinoa and chickpeas are cooking, prep all of the veggies!  Dice the red pepper and chop the kale.  Finely slice the scallion.

    Chopped Red Pepper and Kale for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale
  5. Slice the Pomegranate in half and then holding one half upside down, hit the back with a mallet or the back of your knife to knock out the seeds.

    Knife hitting Pomegranate to get seeds out for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale
  6. To a large mixing bowl, add the cooled quinoa, chickpeas, kale, red pepper, pomegranate, scallion, dressing and crumbled feta.  Then mix to combine.

    All ingredients in bowl for Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale
  7. Store in pre-portioned lunch containers, serve as a side or as a main dish.  Enjoy!

    Close up of bowl of Quinoa & Kale Salad with Roasted Chickpeas, Pomegranate, Feta, red pepper, and Creamy Lemon Dressing. #glutenfree #lunch #dinner #healthyrecipes #healthyfood #salads #quinoa #kale