Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Zucchini, Chickpea, Corn, Quinoa Salad with a Pesto Lemon Dressing

Looking to add more protein to your diet? This salad has it all with these healthy ingredients. 

½ Cup of cooked quinoa contains about 4g of Protein. Quinoa is not a grain, but it belongs to the same family of the leafy vegetables, like spinach. However, it looks like one and almost has similar uses. Quinoa is a rich source of fiber, vitamins, minerals, and above all protein. Quinoa is one of the most protein-rich whole Carbs that you can add to your daily diet as it provides all the essential amino acids.
Chickpeas½ cup of cooked chickpeas contains about 5.90g of Protein. They are also known as garbanzo bean, extremely affordable source of protein. They are also loaded with fiber, and help to reduce cholesterol levels and decreases the risk of coronary heart disease.

Zucchini, Chickpea, Corn. Quinoa Salad with a Pesto Lemon Dressing
Cook's Notes: I used Tri-Color Quinoa for this recipe. I found a box at Target (6.75 oz) called Tri-Color Quinoa with Savory Herbs. The salad was served at room temperature. Diced grape tomatoes added more color contrast to the salad. The dish was quite flavorful and easy to prepare. I can safely say most healthy recipe I have ever served. 
Recipe adapted from and serves 4-6 as a side.
  • 2 cups quinoa cooked (substitute vegetable or chicken broth for water) 
  • 1 TB. olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup sweet onions, diced
  • 2 cups zucchini, diced
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen corn
  •  1 cup chickpeas, rinsed and drained 
  • 1 cup diced grape tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 2 TB. jarred basil pesto 
  • 1 TB. lemon juice
  • Keep cooked quinoa warm in a covered pan.
  • Heat oil in a medium sized saucepan. Add garlic and onions and saute 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Add in zucchini, corn, chickpeas and saute 5 minutes. 
  • Place all ingredients in a bowl with cooked quinoa and mix well. 
  • Add in tomatoes toss with lemon juice and basil pesto. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  

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