Quinoa and Black Bean Salad

Quinoa is 100% whole grain and is close to being a perfect food source. Technically it’s not a grain but the seed of a leafy plant related to spinach. Quinoa is an excellent source of protein. A 1/4 cup of Quinoa has a nutritional value of 30g carbohydrate, 3g dietary fiber, 1g sugar, 5g protein equivalent to 12 to 18%), 3g fat and 5mg sodium. According to the National Academy of Sciences, Quinoa is “one of the best sources of protein in the vegetable kingdom”.


Quinoa contains the amino acid lysine which helps the body to produce protein. The World Health Organization has rated the quality of protein in Quinoa to be equivalent or superior to that found in milk products. Therefore, Quinoa is a good source of protein for those who are allergic to cows milk.


Quinoa has been one of the primary foods of the Inca Indians for more than 5000 years. The Incas referred to Quinoa as “Mother Grain”. Most Quinoa is grown in the Andes in South America. Some Quinoa is now being grown in the Colorado Rockies. The fact that Quinoa will grow in extremely poor soil together with its great nutritional value makes it a true super grain to feed the world. However, it is still not a common food that you can find in the supermarket. Minoo bought this 1 kg pack of organic Quinoa from Galloway for $12. Someone in the kitchen told us that you can find Quinoa in the bulk section of Save-On-Foods.


The Quinoa and Black Bean Salad is absolutely great. The Quinoa has a nutty, smoky flavour and is less filling than other grains and pastas.


  • 1 1/2 cups Quinoa
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked black bean, rinsed if canned (you may substitute black bean with red asuki bean)
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked corn
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped red pepper
  • 1 jalapeno chili, seeded and minced
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh coriander or parsley


  • 1 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 5 tablespoons fresh lime or lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/3 cup olive oil


Click on the link below for the instructions.


quionasalad-4-300x200In a bowl, wash quinoa with at least 5 changes of cold water, rubbing the grains and letting them settle before pouring off most of the water. Wash until the water runs clear and drain in a large fine sieve.In a saucepan of salted boiling water, cook quinoa for 10 minutes. Drain the quinoa in a sieve and rinse under cold water. Set the sieve over a saucepan of boiling water and steam the quinoa, covered with a kitchen towel and lid, until fluffy and dry, about 10 minutes.

Transfer the quinoa to a large bowl and cool.

quionasalad-5-300x200While the quinoa is cooking, chopped the red pepper and jalapeno. Add corn, beans, red pepper, jalapeno and coriander in a big bowl.
quionasalad-3-300x200To make dressing, in a small bowl whisk together all the dressing ingredients.Add the cooled quinoa to the bowl of other ingredients. Toss the dressing with the salad well, adjust seasoning to your taste.
quionasalad-2-300x200Serve the salad as a side dish.

This Post Has 5 Comments

  1. StyleDish

    Do you think couscous would work as well in place of quinoa?

  2. RobynT

    Ooh, looks good and I’ve been wanting to try quinoa! And yeah I don’t see why it couldn’t work with couscous…

  3. Janice

    THANK YOU for this recipe!!
    A friend gave me a large bag of quinoa for my birthday and I have yet to find a way to make it tasty. This recipe looks very promising 🙂

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