I just love a salad that’s hearty enough to be a meal! Don’t you?
I also love salads with many components, because it’s easy to please my sometimes picky-eater-kids!
Some things I leave on the side, and my youngest son, for example, doesn’t like “mixed” meals — he likes to see a few separate items on his plate. I’m a caterer, what can I say?
Quinoa is a fabulous ingredient to have on hand. I usually make a large amount at once and use it over a period of several days, in a few different recipes. My kids especially like Quinoa Parmesan Burgers! And I especially like this healthy dinner salad!
For the salad:
- Olive oil for the pan
- 2 cups cooked quinoa
- 4 chicken tenders
- 1/2 head red leaf lettuce, washed, dried and roughly chopped
- 11/2 cups roughly chopped tomatoes
- 1/2 cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
- 1 large, roughly chopped ripe avocado
- 1 cup frozen green peas, thawed
For the dressing:
- 1 teaspoon grainy mustard
- 1 1/2 teaspoons honey
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
Serves 4 to 6
Total Prep and Cooking Time: about 20 minutes
The quinoa should be made at least a couple of hours ahead of time so it can cool completely. You can cook the quinoa according to the package instructions — typically you mix 1 part quinoa with 2 parts water, bring to a boil, cover, reduce the heat to low and cook for 15 minutes.
Coat a small saute pan with olive oil and place it over medium heat. Season the chicken tenders with salt and pepper. Place them in the pan once it’s hot. You should hear a sizzling sound — if you don’t, wait until the pan is hotter! Cook until the chicken is cooked through, a couple minutes on each side. Cool the chicken completely, and then cut it into bite sized chunks.
In a large mixing or serving bowl, combine the quinoa, chicken. lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, avocado and peas.
To make the dressing, combine the mustard, honey, vinegar, and a bit of salt and pepper. Slowly blend in the olive oil. Add the dressing to the salad just before serving. Enjoy!