Fresh Strawberry-Quinoa Salad with Roasted Strawberry Vinaigrette

Who doesn’t love a delicious strawberry salad? Knowing that California strawberries are low in sugar and calories – only 45 calories per serving! – enjoying this salad is even sweeter. Not to mention, it’s a super easy way to eat a serving of 8 strawberries.

Eating one serving of 8 strawberries a day has many surprising health benefits! For example, eating 8 medium strawberries provides 160 percent of the recommended daily intake of vitamin C, and 5 percent of the recommended daily intake of potassium. Talk about some great health benefits in a tiny package!

Check out the recipes below from our friend and registered dietitian Manuel Villacorta. Let us know what you think!

Fresh Strawberry-Quinoa Salad with Roasted Strawberry Vinaigrette
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 cup dry quinoa
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 16 medium sized California strawberries, de-stemmed and cut into half inch slices
  • 1 whole avocado
  • 8 tablespoons Roasted Strawberry Vinaigrette (see recipe below)
Instructions
  1. In a small sauce pan, add the quinoa, vegetable stock, and sea salt. Bring it up to a boil and then simmer. Cook for 15 minutes or until the quinoa is cooked. Set aside and cool.
  2. Slice up the strawberries and set aside in a bowl.
  3. Peel and cut the avocado into ¼ slices.
  4. Serve 4 strawberries sliced with ¼ avocado and mix 2 tablespoons of dressing per serving.

 

Roasted Strawberry Vinaigrette Recipe

In this recipe, roast the strawberries to bring out the natural sweetness of the fruit.  By combining it with thyme, the herbal notes offer a great complement to the sweet berry flavors.


Roasted Strawberry Vinaigrette
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 8 medium sized California strawberries, stemmed and cut in half
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • Canola oil spray
  • ½ teaspoon mustard
  • ⅛ teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees.. In a medium-sized bowl, add the strawberries, coconut sugar and thyme. Mix and let it sit for about 5 minutes to allow some of the natural juices to be released.
  2. Cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with canola oil. Add the strawberry mixture and roast for 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for 1 minute.
  3. In a food processor, add the strawberry mixture. Make sure to get any excess juices left over from the baking sheet. Add the mustard, salt, vinegar and oil. Puree until it reaches a smooth consistency.
  4. Refrigerate and store up to one week.

 

 

 


Contest-Winning Strawberry Basil Quinoa Salad

Strawberry Basil Quinoa Salad 1024
Believe it or not, this lovely dish was developed by a kid! Twelve-year-old Danielle McNerney took first place in the recent California Strawberry #KidsCookOff where mini chefs everywhere were challenged to create a five-ingredient strawberry recipe for a chance to win up to $500 in Amazon Gift Cards. Danielle’s recipe was so simple and tasty we couldn’t resist sharing with you.

It was a lot of fun checking out all the cute kids and their strawberry masterpieces – I wish they all could have won! The main judge, MasterChef Junior Season 3 Nathan Odom, made the final picks. Check out the three video submissions that landed the top three slots and then try their simple and delicious strawberry creations!

1st Place – Danielle, 12 – Strawberry Basil Quinoa
2nd Place – Sophie, 6 – Chocolate Chip Cookie Cups with Strawberry Marshmallow Filling
3rd Place – Archer, 4 – Strawberry Guacamole

I prepared the quinoa dish to share with my co-workers and we all agreed it’s a winner. We loved the crunchiness of the pistachios along with the combination of sweet and savory flavors. For those who like to enjoy salads with cheese, you may want to add feta for a little extra pizzaz (that’s what we did).

Enjoy!

 

Strawberry Basil Quinoa Salad
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 1½ cups fresh strawberries, sliced or chopped
  • 1 cup dried quinoa, cooked (makes about 3 cups)
  • ¼ cup shelled pistachios, chopped
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup fresh basil
  • * optional - salt and pepper to taste
  • *optional - crumbled feta cheese
Instructions
  1. Prepare quinoa according to package directions; set aside.
  2. To flavor the olive oil with basil, in small pan, heat the olive oil and then sauté basil until crispy, about 4 minutes.
  3. Remove basil and let drain on paper towel.
  4. In mixing bowl, gently stir all ingredients.
  5. Garnish with feta cheese and crumbled fried basil leaves.