I’m really excited to share with you this amazing quinoa cherry salad recipe!
I was so excited over the weekend when I went to Whole Foods and they had cherries. I intended to buy just a pound but I get a little distracted in Whole Foods.
Bright Shiny Object, Bright Shiny Object
I wasn’t paying close attention and I accidentally picked up a two pound bag. (So, you’ve been warned – you might see more cherries than just this cherry salad in the near future.)
Anyways, I knew that this was the perfect opportunity to adapt a cherry salad recipe I had been wanting to try from Super Natural Every Day.
The original called for rice, so it was prime to become my latest quinoa salad experiment. I reduced the oil a bit, but if you are not watching calories or fat you may wish to add a bit back – if this is the case you can use ½ cup instead of 1/3.
I really like the cherry salad dressing – I’m not sure I’ve ever had anything quite like it before. The dressing really makes this cherry salad recipe and if like me you have some left over use it for a salad!
To make this a great vegan quinoa recipe, just skip the cheese.
Now, if you are like me and find yourself sans cherry pitter, I will tell you how to pit a cherry without a cherry pitter. I had a package of grill skewers that I use to grill vegetables. I poked the dull end of one through the cherry. It didn’t pop the pit out like a pitter would but it helped the cherry easily break in half and was much easier than trying to use a knife.
- 3 ½ cups cooked quinoa, warm
- 2 cups spinach, chopped
- ⅔ cup walnuts, toasted
- 1 ½ cups fresh cherries, pitted
- ½ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup white wine vinegar
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 T basil, chopped
- 3 oz goat cheese, crumbled
- Combine warm quinoa, spinach and most of the walnuts in a large bowl and toss, allowing spinach to wilt slightly.
- Make dressing by combining ⅓ of cherries, olive oil, vinegar and ¼ tsp salt in the blender. Process until smooth.
- Cut remaining cherries in half. Stir most of them into quinoa. Salt and pepper to taste.
- Place in serving bowls and top with additional cherries, walnuts, basil and goat cheese.
- Make it vegan by omitting the cheese.
Or, if you want to get really crazy, you can spend $13 and buy a cherry pitter.