Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

This Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is a must make for a healthy, light dinner or an easy side dish! With protein-packed quinoa, tomatoes, feta, arugula and mint this easy-to-make salad will be on repeat this summer!

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad recipe in a bowlMediterranean Quinoa Salad Recipe

This is the first official quinoa recipe here on Lexi’s Clean Kitchen and it’s a good one! Many of you have requested healthy and nutrient-dense grain recipes and a promise is a promise! In the past we’ve had lots of oat recipes which you all have been loving and thought it time to incorporate some recipes with this healthy gluten-free grain! This Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is so flavorful and loaded with veggies and herbs! It tastes as fresh as it looks and is the perfect dish to serve as a light dinner or as a side. It also can work as meal prep for a few days.

Is Quinoa Healthy?

Our in-house nutritionist Gabby says: Quinoa is tremendously healthy, especially for those following a vegan or vegetarian diet. Quinoa is one of the very few plant proteins that contains all nine essential amino acids that our body cannot make on their own, making it a complete protein. Not only is it a rich source of protein, it is also naturally gluten-free, safe for those with celiac disease.

Many believe quinoa is a seed, but it is actually a whole grain. This makes it a nutrient-dense, high fiber substitute for things like white pasta. Last but not least, it is high in many vitamins and nutrients that Americans are deficient in such as magnesium, thiamin, folate, iron, potassium, calcium and phosphorus.

mediterranean quinoa recipeDo you need to rinse quinoa?

Yes! Don’t skip this step, even if your quinoa says “pre-rinsed”. Rinsing the quinoa get’s rid of the natural powdery coating called saponin that has a strong, somewhat unpleasant flavor. Put the quinoa in a strainer and rinse really well under cold water for 1-2 minutes. Then it’s ready to use.

How long will this salad keep?

This salad as made is best served immediately because of the arugula. But if you’d like to keep it longer, or use for meal prep you can make the salad up to 2 days ahead and either skip the arugula all together or add it to the prepared salad right before ready to serve.

quinoa and arugula saladIf you like this healthy salad recipe, check out these others:

Watch the video here:


Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

Prep Time 00:10 Cook Time 00:25 Total Time 00:25

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 medium shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 pints cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 cup crumbled feta
  • 1/2 cup freshly chopped mint leaves
  • 1 cup arugula

Directions

  1. Cook quinoa: Rinse quinoa under cold running water really well. In a pot add quinoa, pinch of salt and 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until quinoa is tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and spread out on a baking sheet to slightly cool, about 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl make dressing: whisk together olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper and shallots.
  3. Once the quinoa has slightly cooled, to the large bowl add quinoa, cherry tomatoes, feta, mint and arugula. Toss to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning.

Recipe Notes

  1. You can prepare the quinoa, dressing and chop all the veggies 1 day ahead of time.
  2. We enjoyed eating this both warm straight after making the quinoa, or after the quinoa has been completely cooled. Either way works, and just depends on your preference.
Loading nutrition data...
There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation, at no cost to you! However, I only recommend products I absolutely love and use in my own home! Thank you for supporting Lexi's Clean Kitchen when you shop! See my privacy policy for more information about this, the information we save, and more!

Sheet Pan Greek Meatballs with Veggies and Chickpeas

This Sheet Pan Greek Meatballs with Veggies and Chickpeas is a delicious dinner that will make the whole family happy! The greek meatballs have a healthy dose of spinach and a nice bright lemon and herb flavor to complement the veggies and chickpeas. This largely hands-off cooking dinner is gluten-free and optionally dairy-free too!

Sheet Pan Greek MeatballsSheet Pan Greek Meatballs with Veggies and Chickpeas

We can’t get enough of sheet pan dinners, and we’re happy to hear neither can you! Sheet pan dinners are great because they minimize dishes and utilize hands-off cooking! We love this Sheet Pan Greek Meatballs with Veggies and Chickpeas for all of those reasons, but most important we love it because that flavor is so bright with a healthy does of vegetables! The meatballs are made up of chicken, spinach, lemon and greek spices and optionally feta. It’s easy to leave that out if you are dairy-free but we love the salty kick it gives the meatballs.

We used a bunch of veggies like red onions, peppers and eggplants  to accompany the meatballs, but it’s easy to swap out for what’s in season or available to you, so long as it cooks in relatively the same amount of time. The chickpeas don’t get super crunchy because they’re cooked with a lot of vegetables with moisture but they add some nice texture and of course a healthy dose of fiber! All together this dish is so flavorful and likely to be your new favorite sheet pan dinner!

What vegetables go with meatballs?

We love recipes when they’re versatile in terms of what veggies you can use, and this sheet pan dinner is no exception. We opted to use red onions, red peppers and eggplants (along with chickpeas) for this dish because they complemented the lemon and herb greek meatballs, but really you could use any veggies that would cook in the directed amount of time. Some other options:

  • cauliflower (small florets)
  • broccoli (small florets)
  • diced zucchini or summer squash
  • grape tomatoes

Tips for sheet pan cooking:

  • Sheet pan dinners are the best. Make sure to read the recipe all the way through (of course) and plan to use a timer! This way you can truly walk away from the oven and not have to worry about when you need to add anything for the next step.
  • Do the prep ahead of time: You can prepare so much of this meal the night before so that right before cooking all you have to do is cook! Chop all the veggies (minus the eggplant, which may brown if left cut overnight) and prepare the chickpeas and spices in a bowl and cover overnight in the fridge. You can also prepare the meatball mixture the night before so all you have to do is scoop them when ready to bake.
  • Use the correct size sheet pan. When we say sheet pan we are referring to the rimmed half sheet pan which is 18″ by 13″. The size of the sheet pan matters because you do not want to overcrowd the pan when cooking, so if you are using a smaller sheet pan you may need to use 2 to achieve the same result.

sheet pan dinners

Watch the video:

If you like this sheet pan recipe, check out these others:


Sheet Pan Greek Meatballs with Veggies and Chickpeas

Prep Time 00:15 Cook Time 00:25 Total Time 00:40 Serves 4

Ingredients

For Veggies and Chickpeas:

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1- 15 ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored and sliced
  • 1 red onion, cored and sliced
  • ½ eggplant, diced to 1 inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper

For meatballs:

  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons almond flour
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup frozen chopped spinach, squeeze out
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese, plus more for garnish (optional)
  • 2 green onions
  • 1 lb. ground chicken (white or dark meat)
  • parsley, for garnish

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400ºF and lightly oil a 12" x 18" sheet pan.
  2. In a large bowl mix all of the ingredients for the veggies and chickpeas and toss to combine. Place the vegetable mixture on the sheet pan, spread out evenly and bake for 15 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile to the bowl add the egg, almond flour, oregano, salt, pepper, lemon zest and garlic and whisk until combined. Add in the spinach, feta, green onions and ground chicken and mix together.
  4. Take the sheet pan out of the oven at 15 minutes and move the veggies and chickpeas to each side to make space in the center for the meatballs.
  5. Using a small scoop (like a cookie scoop) portion meatballs onto the sheet pan (you want the meatballs to me on the small size, about 1” in diameter). Bake for an additional 10 minutes, or until the meatballs have cooked through to 165ºF.
  6. Garnish with fresh parsley and serve immediately, or portion in meal prep containers and cool completely before closing the lid.

Recipe Notes

  1. For dairy-free: leave out the feta!
Loading nutrition data...
There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation, at no cost to you! However, I only recommend products I absolutely love and use in my own home! Thank you for supporting Lexi's Clean Kitchen when you shop! See my privacy policy for more information about this, the information we save, and more!