Good ‘ole green beans offer a surprising range of health benefits. That’s why I add them to my farm buying club order every couple of weeks. However, I find them a bit ho-hum on their own. So I try to come up with tasty ways to use them. This 3 Bean Quinoa Salad recipe might be one of my favorites!
Quinoa Makes It A Meal
Traditional 3 bean salad is usually comprised of:
- Oil/vinegar dressing
It’s tasty, but the range of ingredients isn’t wide enough to make it a meal. I often turn my family’s veggie side dishes into my meals, so I wanted to bulk it up. I added:
- Leafy greens
- Lime dressing
3 Bean Quinoa Salad
To keep things light, I replaced the traditional oil/vinegar dressing with a lovely lime dressing. Most of the researchers I follow recommend avoiding processed oils. So I opt for oil free dressings and sauces when possible.
The lime dressing compliments this salad beautifully. It has just the right mix of tang and sweetness to bring out the flavors of the ingredients.
3 Bean Quinoa Salad with lime dressing
- 1 cup quinoa uncooked
- 2 cups water
- 1/2 lb. green beans trimmed
- 15.5 oz. navy beans low sodium can, rinsed and drained
- 15.5 oz. pinto beans low sodium can, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup dark leafy greens chopped finely (pulse in food processor fitted with the S blade), I used beet greens and chard
- 1/2 cup baby carrots chopped finely (pulse in food processer fitted with the S blade)
- 1 cucumber large, peeled and seeded, diced
- 1/2 red onion large, diced
- 3 limes
- 1 Tbsp. mustard (I use Nathan’s Coney Island)
- 2 1/2 Tbsp. maple syrup
- Rinse quinoa if it hasn’t been pre-washed.
- Combine quinoa and 2 cups of water in a saucepan, cover and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 15 minutes or until quinoa is tender. (Check to be sure quinoa doesn't cook dry. If water evaporates before 15 minutes, remove from heat and keep covered.) Let cooked quinoa sit covered for about 5 minutes.
- While quinoa is cooking, place beans in a steamer pot and steam for 10 to 15 minutes or until beans are crisp tender. Rinse immediately with cold water.
- Combine navy and pinto beans, minced greens and carrots, diced cucumber and onion in a large mixing bowl.
- Chop green beans into 1-2 inch pieces and add to mixing bowl.
- Add 1/3 of quinoa to mixing bowl and stir to blend. Repeat with remaining quinoa.
- Juice limes.
- Combine lime juice with mustard and maple syrup and stir briskly with a wire whisk. (You could also shake the mixture in a sealed container.)
- Pour dressing over salad and mix well.
- Serve salad cold or at room temperature.
Note: I do not include nutrition information with my recipes because I subscribe to the theories presented in the book Whole and believe we should focus on eating a variety of whole foods instead of counting calories or keeping track of individual nutrients.
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