Fitness Focus: Lemon Parsley Quinoa Salad

Cooked up on June 19, 2012

Filed under: dinner, fitness focus, frugal, gluten free, healthy eating, lunch, pantry, salad, side, under 1 hour, vegetarian

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I have a problem.

A problem where I run 3-4 miles in the morning and then, despite having eaten a healthy breakfast EVERY day, and whatever I wanted for dinner and dessert the night before, AND refuel after the run, and then I’m still hungry by 11:15 or so. Then I eat lunch at noon and when 2 p.m. rolls around and I am starving! I want to refuel and not be hungry, but I want to do so in the healthiest way possible (so, sadly, not with cookies).

Enter my plan for an afternoon snack.

I’m starting with some quinoa. I’ve heard good things, and I know it’s pretty much faultless when it comes to nutrition. For some reason, when I tried it a long time ago it wasn’t my favorite. But when I tried it this time I had a much better experience. I added a little feta and lemon juice, and this was one tasty treat. You can also serve it with half a chicken breast, which is what we did for lunch-sized portions.

For two lunch-sized portions, you will need:

  • 1 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup quinoa
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 2 green onions
  • 2 Tbsp. feta
  • 2 Tbsp fresh chopped parsley (use WAY less if you use dried)
  • lemon juice, to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • optional: chicken breast

Bring the water to a boil in a saucepan, and then add the quinoa. Cover and bring back to a boil, cooking for 10-12 minutes until the quinoa is mostly soft. Fluff with a fork and take off the hot burner.

Chop the avocado into 1/2-inch pieces and put in a small bowl. Add 1 Tbsp. lemon juice and toss to coat.

Chop the green onions and red pepper into 1/2-inch pieces and toss with the avocado/lemon juice mixture, quinoa, feta and parsley. Taste it and see how you feel about the lemon juice content. I ended up adding just a teensy bit more. Season with black pepper to finish, and if you want, you can add some chicken breast.


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