Basic Quinoa Salad

Always excited to share Louisa from Living Lou’s recipes on here. I’ve really, really been making an effort to grocery shop and cook at home. The simpler the recipe the better. (This weekend it was simple pasta and tomato sauce… that counts, right?) It’s easier for me to do dinners because by the end of the day I’m done with work. But during the day? I’ve gotten in the habit of ordering food or popping into a little cafe nearby. Whoops! This is the perfect lunch that is simple and healthy to make! Thanks for sharing Louisa!
Basic Quinoa Salad
by Louisa from Living Lou
Are you looking for a healthy salad to add to your week? I promise that this simple, basic quinoa salad will quickly become your go-to salad! I’m a huge fan of bringing a lunch to work or to school (it saves you so much money) and this salad has been one of my go-to weekday lunches for a couple of years now. Plus it’s really good for you which is a nice bonus. And while we’re talking bonuses, it only takes about 15 minutes to make, so if you’re strapped for time (which we all are these days), this is the recipe for you. 
Since we’re going back to basics, I wanted to share a recipe that would build on the techniques that I shared in my last post, so this quinoa salad uses my Basic Balsamic Vinaigrette as a dressing. If you haven’t made it yet, hopefully this salad will inspire you to give it a try. What I love about this recipe is that it’s kind of like a blank canvas, you can add whatever vegetables you have in your fridge or use the ones I’ve highlighted below. Quinoa salads are packed with protein which will keep you full throughout the day. You’ll notice that I’ve included feta cheese in here because it’s my favourite cheese on the planet, and I highly recommend you give it a try.
Today’s tips: 
1. Prep for the week
Doing a bit of prep on the weekend for the coming week is one of the best things you can do for your health and your wallet. This quinoa salad is the kind of dish that I would prep on the weekend to eat during the week. You’ll thank me on Tuesday night when you have this in your fridge after a long and exhausting day!
2. Get creative!
The most fun thing about cooking is to explore your creativity! Like I said earlier, you can really mix and match your favorite veggies in this salad (even fruit too if you’re feeling adventurous). Try adding some white beans for extra protein, shredded carrots, tomatoes or sugar snap peas. I would love to see what you guys come up with, so share with Carly and me in the comments or on Twitter and Instagram!

Basic Quinoa Salad
For quinoa: 
1 cup uncooked quinoa
2 cups water
For salad:
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 green onion, sliced
1 cup diced cucumber
1 cup diced feta cheese
3 ½ tbsp basic balsamic vinaigrette

Bring 2 cups of water to a boil, add quinoa. Cover and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 12  minutes. After 12 minutes, remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork, and allow to cool.
Once quinoa is cool, add red pepper, green onion, cucumber and feta cheese. Drizzle with balsamic vinaigrette and stir. Serve immediately or keep refrigerated.

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