Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

One of my tricks to getting through the work week is to make gigantic quinoa salads to dig into all week for lunches & dinners. This Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad is perfect for leftovers because it gets better with age.  The flavors develop & meld like whoa!

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

Eat it on its own or add avocado and cucumber on top. Throw some in a pita with lettuce & tahini. Mix it into your regular salad and make a super salad from it! Freshen it up with more lemon juice or a splash of red wine vinegar. Serve it with some grilled chicken or sausage. I told you it was versatile…

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

And BTW- It’s vegan (although I wouldn’t mind if you put feta on top of it!). It’s also gluten free, HEALTHY and I’m obsessed with it. There’s a smokiness, a tang, a sweetness, and an herbaceous kick! You’re gonna want to make this every week. It’s a lifesaver.

And we’re off!

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

First we make the quinoa. You cook it in coconut oil to toast it slightly.

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

Now we cook the quinoa.

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

Here we have the spice blend!

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

Cook the onions in the coconut oil. Add the spices.

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

Tomato paste goes in! THIS IS WHERE THE FLAVOR IS AT.

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

We mix the onions in with the cooked quinoa.

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

We stir in the garbanzo beans and all of the herbs! Look at all of that green.

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

Squeeze the lemon in. Add the grapeseed oil & pomegranate molasses.

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

Don’t forget the tomatoes.

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

Let’s plate it!

I served mined with avocado, cucumbers and lemon.


Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean


Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean


Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

This one is definitely going in the weekly rotation.

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad // shutterbean

Here’s to your health!

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad

serves 3-4
recipe slightly adapted from the Thrive Energy Cookbook

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin coconut oil
  • 1 cup red quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 medium tomatoes, seeded & diced
  • 1 15 oz. can garbanzo beans, drained & rinsed
  • 5 green onions, finely chopped (both white & green parts)
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh Italian parsley, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
  • 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
  • sea salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
  • a few lemon wedges, for garnish
  • 1 avocado, thinly sliced for garnish
  • 1/3 English cucumber, sliced for garnish

Heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat and drizzle the bottom with some of the virgin coconut oil. Add the quinoa; toast, stirring frequently, for 1 to 2 minutes or until dry. Add the water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to the lowest setting, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let the quinoa sit, covered for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork, transfer to a large bowl and let cool.

Meanwhile, heat another medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the remaining coconut oil and onion. Cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the cumin, coriander, red pepper flakes, and tomato paste. Cook, stirring for another 3 to 4 minutes. Let cool.

Add the paste mixture to the quinoa and toss gently until fully incorporated. Add the tomatoes, garbanzo beans, green onions, mint, parsley, lemon juice, pomegranate molasses, and grapeseed oil. Toss gently. Season with salt and pepper to taste and garnish with lemon wedges, avocado & sliced cucumber.

  • Abby @ The Frosted Vegan

    Ah, I love the way your arranged the salad, so pretty! I agree, quinoa salads are where it is at!

  • Marie

    As a teacher I pack my lunch every day, so I’m always looking for recipes like this. This sounds divine!

  • Katelyn

    I love this! I make something similar with a southwest twist to it – change up the spices (cumin, oregano, chili powder) and sub in black beans, corn (fresh or thawed frozen) and cilantro instead of parsley. Lime for lemon juice – you get the idea. I find that quinoa salads are incredibly forgiving, too – they’ll take whatever odd bits you’ve got in the fridge. Yum!

  • Dixya @ Food, Pleasure, and Health

    i made a big batch of quinoa yesterday, this will be happening this week for lunch!

  • Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar

    This salad is so freaking yummy looking. I love all those spices!!

  • Allyn

    I JUST learned how to make quinoa with a texture that we actually enjoy. Seriously, just yesterday. I feel like a champion.
    This salad now goes into the “need to make” category.

  • Elise Spontarelli

    I spy garbanzo beans but they’re not in the recipe?? Did you use a whole can or just a few? Looks yum 🙂

  • Janie

    This looks amazing. I look forward to making it. I just made your celery salad and the white bean and tuna salad. They were delicious! Thanks for sharing your recipes.

  • Rachel Taylor

    I’ve never tried red quinoa before, but I have a bunch of normal, white quinoa. Are those usually interchangeable in terms of taste?

    • Tracy

      pretty interchangeable. I prefer red for some reason. It seems nuttier!

  • Millie

    Yum yum!! I need some new recipes for my school lunch so this looks perfect!!

  • fabiola@notjustbaked

    The building of flavors are simply beautiful! I need that cookbook!!

  • Jamie

    So did you make your own pom molasses, or buy it?? I had a bottle of POM juice in my pantry for ages, intending to make molasses, but never got around to it… story of my panty-life… = )

    (p.s. I wish it was spelled moleasses. Mole asses. )

    • Tracy

      I bought it! I didn’t even think to make my own. NEXT TIME!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Todd | HonestlyYUM

    Holy yum! This looks insane, and that avocado is just perfect. Wow!!! I am SO in love with your ingredient shots.

  • Maria Tadic

    This look so yummy and fresh! I’ve been craving fresh flavors!! It’d be perfect for a leftover lunch too!

  • precious carroll

    The salad got me to stop and scroll through but then the bowls! Where are the bowls from?!

  • Amy

    Yummy! I love having a stock of something in the fridge to just grab and go for work lunches. That way I can concentrate on making yummy dinners and desserts through the week 🙂
    Thanks Tracy, this ones on the rotation!

  • Lisa

    That looks so good. I will definitely have to try that in the next weeks 🙂 I am going to San Francisco in May. Have you ever made a SF food guide? I would love to hear your recommendations. Thanks so much.

  • Kate @ ¡Hola! Jalapeño

    Looks fab! I bet it would be good warm or cold, can’t wait to try!

  • Julie

    This looks delicious!! Can the grapeseed oil and pomegranate molasses be substituted if you don’t have them on hand?

  • Heather Christo

    This is exactly what I love to eat for lunch and it look so great!

  • Sandy @ Reluctant Entertainer

    LOVE this recipe, Tracy! breakfast, lunch, dinner … LOL!

  • Tracy | Pale Yellow

    Quinoa salads are the best for lunch; so versatile and healthful. Great idea for toasting the quinoa before cooking.

  • Christina @ Scaredy Cat Kitchen

    Gorgeous! I just love quinoa salads and I have a bottle of pomegranate molasses that I was wondering what to do with. Problem solved 🙂

  • Krystal Johnson

    Thanks for the great lunch recipe, Tracy! I’m always looking for salads that are filling but don’t leave me feeling weighed down.

    I’ve been thinking about buying “Thrive,” Are you liking it so far?

  • Jackie

    This is wonderful – the pom molasses totally makes it! Thanks for sharing!

  • Sue

    This looks amazing! I really want to make it tonight, but I don’t have any pomegranate molasses. Any ideas for substitutions?

  • Sen

    I have made this twice now! Sooo good.

    PS. I just listened to the podcast about how we aren’t leaving enough comments and I realize suddenly how you don’t know that I faithfully read every one and try many of your recipes. Carrot coconut soup is my fave. I like your descriptions and your tastes, food and otherwise. Thank you for your work. Sincerely. (From a never before commenter, but an always enjoyer and lurker. 🙂

  • Stefanie

    Tracy Shutterbean! I’m making this for the fourth time tonight. Thanks for my latest work lunch addiction. Like Katelyn, I like it especially with cilantro and a limey twist. (Going to have to try your quinoa and avo salad very soon… If I can stop stuffing my face with this instead.)

    Thank you for posting such great (healthy?! whuuut?) recipes! 😀 Loving it!

  • Millie

    Love this recipe!
    I’ve got some leftover quinoa so will definitely be getting inspiration and putting something like this on my blog soon! 🙂

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  • Sophie Harriet

    I just made this for my blog! All I can say is “yum, yum, yum!”. Everyone should make it! Quick, easy and healthy – perfect for a life on the go! I really recommend it as a student supper – on my quest to find great meals for students to make! Thanks Tracy!

    • Tracy

      fabulous! I wish I had this recipe when I was a student. Would have helped me avoid soo much pizza in college 😉

  • Elizabeth

    I made this and have now fallen in love with quinoa!

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