I am always on the lookout for tasty lunch options. I love salads, but sometimes they just aren't filling enough and by the end of the work day, I'm shoving quarters as fast as I can into the break room vending machine.
I love to make this delicious Thai Crunch Salad w/ Peanut Dressing for work, but I wanted something more filling. So when I found this recipe for a Crunchy Cashew Thai Quinoa Salad w/ Ginger Peanut Dressing, I knew I had to give it a try.
I ended up using a combination of the two recipes- the dressing part of the first recipe (modified a bit) and the salad part of the second recipe. I found the dressing for the quinoa salad to have too much soy sauce and was way too salty. Plus, I already prefer the taste of the other dressing.
It's an easy salad to make; cook the quinoa, chop all the veggies, blend the dressing in a food processor, toss and voila! Yummy salad!
Crunchy Thai Peanut Quinoa Salad
1 cup uncooked quinoa
2 cups red cabbage, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 carrot, shredded
1/2 a red onion, chopped
1/3 cup chopped green onions
1/3 cup chopped cilantro leaves
1/2 cup cashews or peanuts
1/2 cup edamame, shelled and cooked
1/3 cup peanut butter
1 tbsp red wine vinegar (or unseasoned rice vinegar)
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp honey
1/2" square ginger, chopped
1 clove of garlic
1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp cilantro leaves
1 tsp sesame oil (optional)
1/2 tsp red chili pepper flakes (optional)
* When making the dressing, don't forget to taste test and tweak it to your personal preferences. I rarely follow the recipe to a T, I add a bit more here and there until I like the flavor. I enjoy spicy, so I add more chili flakes! :)
Cook the quinoa first. Bring 2 cups of water to a boil, add quinoa, cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until all water is gone.
While the quinoa cooks and cools, chop and prep all your veggies. If you need to, cook the edamame.
I love the vibrant colors of the salad!
Red onions, carrots, red cabbage, red bell pepper, green onions, and cilantro.
Let's make the dressing!
Throw all the ingredients into a food processor and blend. Add move olive oil if it's too thick. Don't thin it out too much; it should be the consistency of a sauce.
After letting the quinoa cool, mix all the ingredients together. Don't add the dressing all at once. Add a little at a time as the dressing can definitely overpower the salad. I found that I did not use all the dressing I had made.
Since I'll be taking leftovers to work, I didn't add the cashews yet. I'll add those the day of.