Tri Color Quinoa Salad…..A Guest Post from Lauren Kelly, Certified Nutritionist

I am so excited to feature the super fabulous Lauren Kelly on my blog today!!  Lauren is also a healthy living foodie and shares great wellness tips and nutritious recipes on her blog LaurenKellyNutrition.  She is a staff Nutritionist for The Bar Method in Montclair, NJ and also for The Bootcamp in Westfield, NJ.  Lauren is dedicated to an authentic and realistic method to achieving optimal health.  Lauren will provide nutritional consulting for the following but not limited to: weight loss, disease prevention, reduction in cholesterol and blood pressure, controlling blood sugar, vegetarian diet, heart health, weight gain, eating disorders, increase energy, gluten intolerance, food allergies and sensitivities and overall improved lifestyle.  You can also visit Lauren on facebook here.

Tri Color Quinoa Salad with Veggies, Avocado, Cranberries & Almonds

adapted from Fine Cooking

  • 2 Tbs. cranberries
  • 1 cup tricolor quinoa, rinsed well
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/2  lemon
  • 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp. basil
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. sweet paprika
  • 1 medium firm-ripe avocado, pitted, peeled, and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots
  • 1 can (BPA FREE) artichokes, rinsed, drained well and sliced
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 cup baby spinach
  • 2 Tbs. coarsely chopped toasted almonds
  • 1 medium scallion, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. In a 2-quart saucepan, bring 2 cups water, the quinoa, and 1/2 tsp. salt to a boil over high heat. Cover, reduce the heat to medium low, and simmer until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is translucent and tender, 10 to 15 minutes. (The outer germ rings of the grain will remain chewy and white. Some germ rings may separate from the grain and will look like white squiggles.) Immediately fluff the quinoa with a fork and turn it out onto a baking sheet to cool to room temperature.
  2. In a pan, place 1 Tbs. oil with carrots, artichokes, tomatoes and spinach.  Saute’ until vegetables soften. Add sliced almonds for  1 minute and blend until well mixed.  Remove from heat.
  3. Finely grate the zest from the lemon and then squeeze 1 Tbs. juice. In a small bowl, whisk the lemon zest and juice with the olive oil, basil, cumin, paprika, and 1/4 tsp. salt. In a large bowl, toss the vinaigrette with the quinoa, cranberries, avocado, scallions, and almonds. Add the vegetable mixture and season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.
Serves 4.


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