Spring herb quinoa salad

By Rebecca Mullins, RHN

Spring is a great time to start increasing the amount of greens and other raw veggies that we include in our meals.

Leafy greens are often the basis of our salads – the more familiar milder choices like spring mix or bibb lettuce; the crispier choices like romaine and kale, and the more bitter choices like arugula and radicchio.  All greens contain a surprisingly high amount of nutrients – besides fibre, water, complex carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals, did you know that they also contain protein and good fats?

Another source of highly nutritious greens grow in our own yards or local (pesticide-free) park!  Besides dandelions, consider adding chickweed, stinging nettle, miner’s lettuce, chicory or lamb’s quarters to your salads.  Although more pungent, bitters are extremely beneficial to our digestive systems. They trigger the production of digestive enzymes and balance hydrochloric acid levels in the stomach.

Common herb flowers like basil, rosemary, dill, oregano and thyme add a subtle flavour.  And the flowers of most vegetables are safe and delicious, like broccoli, chives, garlic and radish.

Spring herb quinoa salad


  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • Pinch sea salt

Ingredients for the dressing:

  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • Pinch sea salt

Ingredients for the salad:

  • 1/2 cup fresh dandelion greens, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh peas, lightly cooked
  • 1 cup cooked salmon (optional)
  • 1/2 cup feta or goat cheese (optional)
  • 1/4 cup fresh chives, chopped


Place quinoa, water and salt in a medium-sized pot. Cover; bring to a boil; reduce to medium-low; simmer for 15-20 minutes.  Remove pot from heat; allow to cool.

Place dressing ingredients into blender; blend for 30 seconds. (Don’t completely puree herbs – just blend enough to release flavours.)

Place cooked quinoa into a large bowl. Pour dressing over it; lightly toss.  Add the rest of the ingredients; lightly toss – and serve.

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