Brandi is natural born food lover of anything from gourmet cheeses and wine down to plain baked breads. When not in the kitchen cooking, she loves to be outdoors, especially near the ocean. She puts her focus mainly on healthy organic ea...
This salad is full of fresh spring flavors. Sweet strawberries, basil and avocado are tossed with cooked quinoa and topped with fresh feta cheese and pine nuts. The champagne vinaigrette adds a light fruity touch to the already simple yet elegant salad. This is a must-make for any spring gathering or even as a light meal for your family.
This salad is loaded with healthy ingredients. Quinoa is still a little foreign to some, but it is widely growing in popularity. It's a wonderful option for vegetarians, vegans and also those on a gluten-free diet who may have trouble getting enough protein plus it's loaded with healthy nutrients. If you want to make this salad vegan, simply skip the feta or add a dairy-free cheese substitute like Daiya or an almond milk cheese.
Strawberry basil quinoa salad with champagne vinaigrette recipe
For the champagne vinaigrette
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup champagne vinegar (you can substitute balsamic, apple cider or even red wine vinegar)
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Pinch of salt and pepper to taste
For the salad
1 cup quinoa, cooked
1 cup fresh strawberries, sliced
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese (goat cheese is a good substitute)
4 cups fresh baby spinach, finely chopped (you can also use arugula)
1 small bunch fresh basil, very thinly sliced
1 small avocado, diced
Pine nuts or sesame seeds for garnish (optional)
In a blender, add all of the ingredients for the vinaigrette. Blend until thick and creamy and set aside.
In a large bowl add the quinoa, strawberries, 1/4 cup of the feta cheese, spinach, basil and avocado. Add in 1/4 cup of the vinaigrette and toss well to combine.
Divide the salad between serving bowls. Top with remaining 1/4 cup of feta cheese, pine nuts and extra vinaigrette before serving.