Vegetarianized Recipe: Quinoa Spinach Salad


A work colleague, Fadia D., shared her recipe for this flavor-packed salad that would be a great addition at any Fourth of July barbecue or picnic. Quinoa brings protein and fiber to this salad party of spinach, almonds, dried apricots, feta, and shallots topped a tangy-tart dressing made with apricot preserves, lemon and honey. Highly versatile—you can substitute dried cranberries for the apricots, walnuts for the almonds, and add other veggies like tomatoes, broccoli, asparagus or beets.

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Servings: 10
Time: About 20 minutes active and total

For Salad:
1 recipe Quinoa, omit parsley and cool to room temperature
1/2 bunch spinach, coarsely chopped
1 cup fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped
1 medium shallot, finely chopped
1 can chickpeas, drained
1/3 pound dried apricots, chopped
2 oz slivered or sliced almonds
4 oz feta, crumbled

For dressing:
3 tablespoons 100 percent apricot preserves
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 lemon, zested
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon dijon mustard (use my homemade recipe)

1. In a large bowl, combine all the salad ingredients. Toss well.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients. Taste and adjust seasonings.

3. Add dressing to salad only right before serving. If taking to a picnic or party, store separately and toss when food is served.

Writer Bio: Adrienne D. Capps loves food AND is a vegetarian! These things are not mutually exclusive in her world. She is passionate about eating, drinking, cooking, teaching, reading about food and growing food. Her goal with her food blog,, is to open up the world of vegetarian cooking and eating to the veg-friendly and the veg-curious in an accessible way. She promises never to try to convert or make you feel guilty—just that eating less meat can be part of a healthy, fun and, above all, tasty lifestyle.