Quinoa is perhaps my favorite gluten free discovery. It is wheat and gluten free, tastes great, is extremely versatile, and a nutritional powerhouse. Similar to the soybean, quinoa is a complete protein which makes it an excellent protein source for vegans and vegetarians. It is a nutrient dense food providing a source of magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorus.
Quinoa is easy to digest, making it an good grain for babies and toddlers, and has an addictive nutty taste. I find myself eating quinoa for breakfast topped with cinnamon, coconut butter and sliced almonds; tossing it into salads or side dishes such a quinoa tabouli; baking it into vegetable burgers; or making it into stuffing for baked acorn squash or red peppers.
Here I've mixed leftover cooked quinoa with black beans, cilantro and red onions for a tasty lunchtime salad.
Quinoa and Black Bean Salad
2 cups cooked quinoa 1 can black beans, drained 1/2 red onion, diced 1 bunch cilantro, chopped 2 cloves garlic, minced 2 tablespoons olive oil 2 tablespoons flaxseed oil 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar salt to taste lettuce 1 avocado, sliced
Mix quinoa, black beans, red onion and cilantro in a medium sized bowl and set aside. In a seperate bowl, mix together the garlic, olive oil, flaxseed oil, apple cider vinegar and salt to make a dressing. Add the dressing to the quinoa mixture and toss gently. If possible, let the salad sit for a least an hour to allow the flavors to develop. Serve over salad greens with sliced avocado.