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Layers of veggies

Friday Foodie: Quinoa Apple Walnut Salad with Mint

Layers of color before tossing. I seem to have failed to take a final picture, but this gives you the essence of this light, tasty, easy to prepare salad.

Layers of veggies

Start with 1 1/2 cups quinoa, prepared according to package instructions. I made mine in the rice cooker on the white rice setting. I made it a day ahead so it would already be cooled.

Sliced Apples

I used already sliced apples and then simply chopped them up into small, bite size pieces.


The walnuts did not need further chopping.

Frozen Corn

I like this frozen roasted corn, as it is easy to throw into any dish. No need to defrost. By the time the salad is ready to be tossed, the corn will be defrosted. If frozen roasted is unavailable, either roast a cob and remove or use any frozen corn. It does not have to be roasted. Do not use canned.


This celery was in the bottom of the drawer on its last leg, but still crunchy and this salad was a good way to use it up. I cut into long strips, as above, then chop.

Tender Young Kale

This kale is quite young and tender. Avoid the big heavy leaves as they will not be as tender. If that is all that is available, cut the amount to 1/4 cup instead of 1/2 and chop into small pieces.

Red Peppers

Aren’t red peppers just beautiful! I love the color and they always seem so juicy.


This is just a few sprigs of the mint leaves I had. Sadly, kind of blurry. The mint adds the refreshing pop that makes this salad so delicious.

This salad was inspired by a salad I ate at the Flying Star a few weeks ago. I almost didn’t order it, as it sounded like such an odd combination, but it truly is delicious. I dressed the salad with pomegranate balsamic, but I have included a recipe for a pomegranate vinaigrette that could be used. I hope you will give this a try. This salad kept nicely for 4-5 days, so it is a great choice to fix ahead and have ready for a sack lunch. Quinoa provides a protein punch that satiates and keeps you feeling full. This could also be served on a bed of mixed greens. Give it a try and enjoy!

Quinoa Apple Walnut Salad in a Pomegranate Balsamic

1 ½ cups quinoa prepared following package instructions
¾ cup chopped apples (use a tart apple, no need to peel)
½ cup chopped walnuts
½ cup roasted corn kernels (frozen is fine)
½ cup chopped celery
½ – 1 cup chopped baby kale leaves
½ cup chopped red pepper
½ cup chopped mint leaves (or less if preferred)
¼ cup Pomegranate Balsamic

Place all ingredients, except balsamic, in a large salad bowl. Toss until well combined. Pour balsamic across salad and toss until ingredients are moistened.

The mint and apples make this a refreshing salad. This salad could also be dressed with a:

Pomegranate Vinaigrette

1 cup of POM or other 100% pomegranate juice (read the label)
½  tsp of sugar
½ tsp of salt
2 tsps high quality balsamic
1 tsp high quality olive oil (optional)

Bring the juice to a boil. Turn down heat and reduce the liquid to about 1/3 – ½ cup. Remove from heat. Stir in remaining ingredients until sugar and salt are dissolved. Allow to cool. Dress salad with desired amount.

Recipe by Jane Thompson