Red Quinoa & Citrus Salad

A stunning and healthy Red Quinoa & Citrus Salad that rocks a ton of flavor combining Mother Natures Super Food Red Quinoa, peas, Julienne carrots, blood oranges,diced red onions, fresh parsley and mint dressed in a Blood Orange Vinaigrette.

I decided to be the last minute blogger to jump on this Quinoa Bandwagon after it died down on everyone’s blog– better late than never right? SO you know I have been researching the daylights out of it for all you lovely readers. Below are some of the things I have learned during this process

Have you tried Quinoa yet? If you have not, see the information below.
Red Quinoa & Citrus Salad

What is Quinoa…

Quinoa (/ˈkiːnwɑː/, from Quechua: kinwa),[2] a species of goosefoot (Chenopodium), is a grain crop grown primarily for its edible seeds. It is a pseudocereal rather than a true cereal, as it is not a member of the true grass family. As a chenopod, quinoa is closely related to species such as beetroots, spinach, and tumbleweeds. As a member of the Amaranthaceae family, it is related to and resembles amaranth, which is also a pseudocereal. – Source Wikipedia

Quinoa in Layman terms is a quick-cooking, gluten-free whole grain ( a pseudo whole-grain, due to the fact it’s cooked like a whole grain but is the seed of a beet relative). Quinoa grows in a rainbow of colors, but the most commonly available are red quinoa, black quinoa, and white quinoa. Quinoa is also high in protein, lacks gluten, and is tolerant of dry soil.

I’ve only used White Quinoa; what is the difference between white and red?

White: Most common type of quinoa available in most stores, so you’ll often see it just called quinoa. Sometimes it’s also called ivory quinoa.

Red: Red quinoa holds its shape after cooking somewhat  better than white quinoa, making it more suitable for cold salads or other recipes where a distinct grain is especially desirable.

Quinoa Facts

  •  Quinoa has the perfect balance of all nine amino acids essential for human nutrition.
  •  Quinoa offers a decent amount of fiber and iron in every serving.
  •  There are only 111 skinny little calories in 1/2 of a cup of this super food.
  • While the quinoa is not technically a grain, it has similarities with whole grains. Its natural color is white but possesses the same qualities of whole grains.
  • Quinoa is considered a kosher food because it is not a true grain; it is actually the fruit of a broadleaf plant in the same family as spinach and beets.
  • Quinoa is a food that is permitted during Passover.
  • People who are on a diet may benefit from quinoa which contains complex carbohydrates (carbohydrates of quinoa are digested gradually), making it food of choice for people who follow a low carbohydrate diet. With its high protein content, it is a substitute of choice for people who follow a high protein diet and it is an excellent food for athletes.

Below is my recipe for Red Quinoa & Citrus Salad Recipe utilizing Red Quinoa – If you enjoy Quinoa you are going to love this delicious salad featuring Florida’s beloved winter Blood Oranges from our neighbors citrus farm.– you know the one I’ve been stalking since November?

Red Quinoa & Citrus Salad Recipe

  • 2 cups organic red quinoa, rinsed well
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • Pinch of kosher salt, to taste
  • 1/2 of a cup of organic frozen peas, thawed
  • 1/4 of a cup organic carrots sliced Julienne
  • Zest of 1 blood orange
  • 2 blood oranges sliced thinly, peels removed
  • 1/4 of a cup diced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoon of fresh mint, Chiffonade

Blood Orange Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup of blood orange juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon of finely minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tablespoon of sugar in the raw
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/8 cup olive oil
  • A pinch of Kosher salt
  • fresh ground pepper, to taste

Directions for Vinaigrette 

In a  blender combine blood orange juice, minced garlic, Dijon mustard, sugar in the raw, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, kosher salt, fresh ground pepper- blend for about 30 seconds

Directions for salad

Rinse red quinoa well to remove any impurities. In a large saucepan bring 4 cups of salted to your taste vegetable broth and red quinoa to a rolling boil- boil for about 1 minute then reduce heat to low-temperature simmer about 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. When red quinoa is done cooking, it looks somewhat soft, and the  ring along the outside edge of the seed becomes visible and separates slightly.

While still hot add organic thawed frozen peas, organic Julienne carrots, zest of 1 blood orange, sliced blood oranges, diced the red onion, fresh parsley and chopped the mint. Add desired amount of Blood Orange Vinaigrette, to your taste. TToss gently to incorporate all ingredients careful not to break up oranges.

Allow red quinoa salad to cool or serve hot.

Note: Any type of orange may be used if you can not gain access to Blood Oranges.

© Heidy L. McCallum and The McCallum’s Shamrock Patch, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material or photos without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Heidy L. McCallum and The McCallum’s Shamrock Patch with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. You may not copy and paste recipes to share on Social Platforms.

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