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Easy Quinoa Salad with a Honey Mustard Dressing

Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) is a tasty, protein-rich grain, which is increasing in popularity as more and more people find out about it and search for quinoa recipes and quinoa ideas. The following quinoa salad features papaya for sweetness, as well as mung beans and white onion. The dressing is made with honey, mustard, lemon, garlic, and vinegar, for a mouthwatering acidity that counteracts the sweetness of the papaya.

Serve this warm or chilled, as a yummy lunch or appetizer. You could even stir some chopped cooked chicken into it to make it go further. Quinoa can be traced back to the Incas, who called it ‘chisaya mama’ meaning ‘mother of all grains’, although the Spanish conquistadores scorned it as ‘Indian food’ and tried to ban it, replacing it with wheat instead.

Quinoa boasts 18% protein, which is high for a grain. It is also a good source of iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and dietary fiber. Quinoa is gluten-free, so if you are looking for a gluten-free salad recipe you might like this one. It is also considered easy to digest and there is no doubt quinoa is versatile, being perfect for hot and cold recipes. Mix it with honey, berries, and almonds to make a breakfast food, or treat it like rice to make pilaf-type dishes. Quinoa is also perfect for salads.

Warm Quinoa Salad with Papaya
Summary: With quinoa and mung beans offering their superfood benefits, along with onion, papaya and a tasty honey-mustard dressing, this salad is sure to delight your taste buds.
Cuisine: Mexican
Recipe type: Salad
Serves: 2
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 oz mung sprouts
  • 2 cups water
  • ½ chopped white onion
  • ½ papaya
For the Honey Mustard Dressing:
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • Juice and zest of ½ lemon
  • 1 teaspoon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  1. Rinse the quinoa in a sieve, and then put it in a small pan with the water.
  2. Bring the quinoa to a boil and then reduce the heat, cover the pan and simmer for 12 minutes or until all the water is absorbed.
  3. You can cook it ahead of time if you want to use it cold.
  4. Peel and dice the papaya, reserving ¼ cup of the seeds.
  5. Toss the diced papaya with the salt, mung sprouts, and white onion in a bowl.
  6. Puree the apple cider vinegar, papaya seeds, garlic, lemon, mustard, and honey in a food processor to make the dressing.
  7. Toss the dressing with the papaya mixture.
  8. Add the quinoa and stir to combine.
  9. You can serve it warm or refrigerate it for a few hours if you prefer it cold.

Photo Description:

Adding papaya to a savory salad always gives it a nice touch of sweetness, and this is a great idea to balance out the acidity in the dressing. If you do not have papaya or do not like it, then use diced, cooked sweet potato or pumpkin instead. Both are the same color and both offer softness and sweetness. This is a very healthy salad recipe, so if you are trying to minimize your intake of fat-rich, creamy salads, why not try this one for a change? The quinoa is sure to fill you up and the other ingredients keep it interesting and tasty. Quinoa salad recipes are renowned for their health benefits, but this one boasts a fantastic flavor too.

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Christine Szalay-Kudra

Hello and welcome to Amazing Salad Recipes. My name is Christine and I'm delighted you are visiting. I started this blog because salad is such an important dish. It can be a side dish or a whole meal, and there are so many type I love to prepare and serve to my family, helping them get all their nutrients as well as having something they can really enjoy.

I have collected lots of salad recipes all in one place, to make finding the perfect salad for the occasion as convenient and easy as possible. Making a special salad can take as few as 5 minutes or you might be using freshly grilled seafood or meat as some of the ingredients, or adding other special touches.

Whether you are looking for a chicken salad or egg salad recipe, something international or unusual, or an elegant salad for a dinner party, you will find it all here. We have salads for carnivores and vegetarians, and also plenty of sensational salad dressings for you to consider. So take a look at some of our exciting salad recipes and choose something amazing to impress your family with.

Thanks for visiting,


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