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Southwest Quinoa Salad with Lime Vinaigrette

  • Author: Tessa
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: about 4 cups 1x


A healthy, colorful salad to serve anytime, anywhere. Lime vinaigrette with raw spices and fresh cilantro adds surprising punch and extra green to only a few other ingredients.



Lime Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 C grapeseed, vegetable, or olive oil
  • 2 T fresh squeezed lime juice (from about 2 limes)
  • 2 T finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 t ground cumin
  • 1 t ground coriander
  • A few dashes hot sauce (your favorite kind; optional; I used Frank’s)
  • 1/41/2 t sea or kosher salt, plus more to taste


  • 2/3 C dry quinoa, any color, rinsed (see notes)
  • 1 red or orange bell pepper
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced, including a few slices of the dark green tops
  • 1/2 C frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • For serving (optional): shredded red cabbage, lime wedges, black beans, crumbled Queso Blanco or feta cheese


  1. Bring 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons water to a boil in a 1 quart saucepan. Add rinsed quinoa, stir, and return to a boil for a minute. Then cover and reduce heat to low, simmering for 15 minutes without stirring. If the quinoa has absorbed the water and tastes done (tender, no crunch, but not falling apart), drain in a colander then place in a mixing bowl to cool.
  2. Meanwhile, make the dressing. Whisk or stir together all the ingredients and set aside, or refrigerate if making ahead of time. Add half the vinaigrette to the quinoa and stir to combine. Stir bell pepper, scallions, and corn into the salad. Add remaining dressing a little at a time to the quinoa (to ensure the quinoa doesn’t get soggy) or serve it on the side. Taste the dressed quinoa salad and season with salt or more hot sauce to taste.
  3. Serve salad alone or with any of the options listed above. Keeps well in the fridge for a few days and can be served cold or room temperature.


Salad is gluten free and vegan. Always check packaged ingredients (spices, etc.) for allergens.

To rinse quinoa, run cold water over it in a fine mesh strainer for about 30 seconds.

  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Category: Salad
  • Cuisine: Healthy