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!

Tomato, Eggplant, and Chickpea Stew

This Tomato, Eggplant and Chickpea Stew is a quick, hearty weeknight meal that uses up all the fresh summer veggies that are starting to roll in! Serve it as a vegetarian meal, or pair it with your favorite protein for a gluten-free and dairy-free dinner!

chickpea ragout with tomatoes and eggplantTomato, Eggplant Chickpea Stew

Hello summer produce! This Tomato, Eggplant and Chickpea Ragout is a hearty vegetarian main dish that is both light and satisfying. It’s also super quick to make, making this weeknight dinner a 30 minute meal! You can serve it as is, or you could pair it with another protein like fish or chicken, or you could pair this with pasta or spiraled veggies.

Here’s what you need to make it:

  • Olive Oil
  • Onion
  • 1 Large Eggplant
  • Garlic cloves
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Italian Seasoning
  • 1 Can Diced Tomatoes, or 3 Large Fresh Tomatoes
  • Chickpeas
  • Fresh Baby Spinach

Tomato and eggplant chickpea stew in pot with spinach

Do you have to peel the eggplant?

You can eat the skin of an eggplant and it does contain nutrients. But larger eggplants have tougher skins, and they do not do well in quick braised dishes like this one. Therefor, we are recommending to peel the skin off.

Can you mix up the veggies in this?

Yes! While we love the combination of eggplant, tomato and chickpea, you can substitute in other vegetables like:

  • zucchini
  • summer squash
  • mushrooms
  • cauliflower
  • kale

Eggplant chickpea recipe with tomatoes

If you like this vegetarian weeknight dinner, check out these others:

Tomato, Eggplant, & Chickpea Ragout

Prep Time 00:10 Cook Time 00:20 Total Time 00:30 Serves 4

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add onion and eggplant and cook until soft, stirring frequently, about 7 minutes.
  2. Add garlic, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning and cook for 30 seconds.
  3. Add tomatoes and chickpeas, increase heat to medium-high and cook for about 10 minutes, until the sauce has reduced slightly.
  4. Return the heat to medium-low and stir in the spinach.
  5. Taste and adjust seasoning and serve immediately. You can serve it as is for a vegetarian meal or serve with protein of choice, or pasta.

Recipe Notes

  • I served mine with pan-seared wild-caught salmon, but this dish is delicious with chicken or pork
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!

Chopped Antipasto Salad with Chicken

Looking for a flavor-packed dinner that’s going to be a hit? This healthy chopped antipasto salad recipe with chicken is loaded with fresh ingredients and is simple to make! It’s low-carb, paleo-friendly and kind of like eating an Italian sub without the bread (making it gluten-free, too)!

close up shot of antipasto salad recipe

Italian Antipasto Salad Recipe with Grilled Chicken

Let’s talk about what’s in this easy weeknight dinner! To begin, this antipasto salad has the best marinated and grilled chicken. Secondly, this salad has all of the best Italian meats. And finally it has crisp chopped lettuce, fresh veggies and an amazing basil balsamic dressing. Have I sold you yet on eating this salad, or what?! This salad is basically an Italian sub turned into a salad with dinner-worthy chicken added in to make this hearty and delicious. This is to say, this is the perfect salad to bring to potlucks, picnics or cookouts or make it for dinner tonight!

Italian dressing being poured onto antipasto salad

What is antipasto salad?

The word antipasto in Italian specifically refers to a pre-meal course. But in this instance I’m referring to the American style antipasto salad made up of cured meats and veggies. This antipasto salad recipe adds the extra addition of marinated grilled chicken to make it feel a little bit more like dinner. If you want an even easier meal you could skip the chicken and bulk up on the veggies for an even easier no-cook dinner recipe.

What kind of meats are in it?

The grilled chicken is the star of this dish along with classic Italian-American deli meats: pepperoni and salami! However, you can add any other Italian meats that you love. Some other great options are prosciutto, capicola or ham!

Can you make it ahead of time?

You can assemble everything for this salad about 2-3 days ahead of time, setting the dressing aside until ready to serve! Therefor, this hearty salad is a great meal prep option as well! You can make a big batch and pack some for the work week ahead.

what is antipasto salad with pepperoni, salami, onions and chicken

If you like this hearty salad, check out these others:

Grilled Chicken Chopped Antipasto Salad

Prep Time 30 min Cook Time 10 min Total Time 0:40

Ingredients

    Marinated Grilled Chicken

    Everything else

    Basil Balsamic Dressing

    Directions

  • Chop chicken and place into a plastic bag
  • Add all marinade ingredients into the bag, toss, and set in the fridge for 30 minutes or longer
  • While marinating, chop lettuce, roasted red peppers, tomato, salami, pepperoni, and onion
  • Arrange in your dish
  • Remove chicken and heat your grill to medium heat
  • Place chicken on the greased grill for 9-12 minutes, flipping halfway through
  • Remove chicken and add to your salad plate
  • Take the additional 1/2 tbsp of seasoning and sprinkle over salad
  • In a bowl, whisk together dressing ingredients
  • Pour over salad and enjoy
  • 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!

    Mahi Mahi Tacos with Tropical Salsa

    Fish Tacos with Tropical Salsa {Whole30, grain-free, dairy-free, paleo-friendly} | Lexi's Clean Kitchen

    These Mahi Mahi Tacos With Tropical Salsa are the perfect low-carb, light and healthy lunch or dinner! The crunch of the lettuce with the creamy tropical salsa and perfectly spiced fish makes for taco perfection. These flavorful fish tacos will be loved by all and are also dairy-free, gluten-free, paleo and whole30 friendly.

    Tray of Mahi Mahi tacos with tropical salsa

    Mahi Mahi Tacos with Tropical Salsa

    These Mahi Mahi Tacos are everything! And when served alongside this outrageously flavorful tropical salsa and drizzled with a sriracha mayo it makes just the perfect combination of spiced, tangy, creamy and bright tacos! And the best part about this dish is that it truly is easy to put together! The most “work” this recipe requires is some chopping and cooking of fish. Other than that it’s basically just assembly! 

    How to Make Mahi Mahi Tacos

    Like most fish, cooking Mahi Mahi is quite simple and quick! There is a blackened style spice mix rubbed over the fish first, and then it is cooked on a grill pan! Here are the spices used:

    • chili powder
    • cumin
    • garlic powder
    • onion powder
    • salt and pepper

    Mahi Mahi Fish tacos in a lettuce cup

    How to make the tropical salsa:

    This tropical salsa has an explosion of different flavors and textures! It has sweet mango and oranges, with creamy avocado and bright tomatoes and of course lime juice and cilantro! All you have to do is dice up the ingredients and toss it all in a bowl for serving.

    What to serve with these tacos:

    You can serve these Mahi Mahi tacos either in a romaine lettuce leaf for crunch low carb option, or in hard taco shells! We recommend serving it with some lime wedges, shredded cabbage and a spicy sriracha mayo! It also might be really nice with this easy cabbage slaw.

    Mahi tacos in lettuce

    If you like this taco recipe, check out these others:

    If you like this seafood recipe, check out these others:

    Mahi Mahi Tacos with Tropical Salsa

    Prep Time 00:05 Cook Time 00:10 Total Time 0:15

    Ingredients

      For the fish

      Tropical Salsa

      • 1 mango, diced
      • 1 orange, diced
      • 1 avocado, diced
      • 1/2 red onion, finely chopped
      • 1 cup grape tomatoes, chopped
      • 2 tablespoons lime juice
      • 1 teaspoon cilantro
      • 1 teaspoon ground garlic from garlic mill

      Homemade Spicy Sauce

      • 1/4 cup organic mayonnaise, homemade or store-bought
      • 2 tablespoons Sriracha

      Ingredients for Assembly

      • 6 Organic romaine lettuce leaves
      • 2 limes, sliced
      • red cabbage, shredded
      • Organic non-gmo corn tortilla shells

      Directions

      1. In a bowl combine seasoning for the fish; season fish and place in the fridge until ready to cook.
      2. In a medium mixing bowl, mix the tropical salsa ingredients together. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Store in the refrigerator until ready to assemble.
      3. Spray grill pan with oil of choice and cook fish over medium heat for about 4-5 minutes on both sides, or until fish is opaque and flakey.
      4. Move fish to cutting board, chop into pieces, and place into a bowl.
      5. On a serving dish lay out desired amount of lettuce leaves or taco shells, depending on what you are using.
      6. In a small bowl, mix together spicy sauce and place on the serving dish.
      7. Assemble: Place fish pieces into each taco shell followed by the tropical salsa. Top with shredded cabbage, a drizzle of spicy sauce. Serve warm with lime wedges.

      Recipe Notes

      • I serve mine with tortilla chips and a bowl with extra tropical salsa!
      • Updated March, 2017
      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!

      7 Layer Taco Dip

      This 7 Layer Taco Dip is just what any party, or fun Saturday night needs! 7 layers of Mexican inspired flavor that is so delicious! This dip is gluten-free and optionally dairy-free and paleo!

      7 layer taco dip recipe with meat and chips7 Layer Taco Dip Recipe

      Is there any better food to bring to a pot luck or serve at your own party than a 7 Layer Taco Dip? Don’t think so! This classic dip is made healthier here with a few homemade substitutes for standard store-bought ingredients, and so so worth it! This version is gluten-free and we offer a few substitutions to make it paleo and dairy free if you need it.

      Be warned: there is no way there will be any leftovers when this dish is served, so make sure you get in there early if you want to have some yourself!

      How to make a 7 Layer Taco Dip

      Make or gather all of the layers!

      • Layer 1: Refried Beans (or extra guacamole for paleo/whole30)
      • Layer 2: Cooked beef mixture
      • Layer 3: Salsa
      • Layer 4: Guacamole
      • Layer 5: Cooked beef mixture
      • Layer 6: Cheddar cheese (substitute another layer of salsa for paleo/whole30/dairy-free)
      • Layer 7: Chopped Lettuce, Tomato, Red Onion

      Layer in all of the ingredients in an oven 8″x8″ (or similarly sized ) oven safe dish. After placing in cheddar cheese put in the oven to melt. Layer on the remaining and serve with hearty tortilla chips and veggies.

      baked 7 layer taco dip with meat

      Can this be made ahead of time?

      You can assemble and prep this entire dish 1 day ahead of time, with the exception of adding the fresh ingredients on top. You can prep those ahead of time though and have them all ready to go for your party. Right before serving place the assembled dip under the broiler to warm up and melt the cheese, and then top with fresh lettuce, tomato and onion.

      What to serve with this dip?

      Serve it with the classics: Tortilla chips (either corn or a grain free option like Siete) and veggies like celery, cucumber, peppers or carrots.

      Best ever Mexican layer dip with chip

      If you like this dip recipe, check out these others:

      7 Layer Taco Dip

      Prep Time 20 min Cook Time 10 min Total Time 0:30

      Ingredients

        Layers

        Refried black beans

        Beef mixture

        Salsa

        • Store-bought or homemade

        Guacamole

        Directions

      • 1. Make refried black beans- Heat 1 tbsp oil of choice in a pan
      • 2. Add in beans and let heat for 3-5 minutes, begin mashing
      • 3. Add in spices, mash and mix well
      • 4. Add in 2 tbsp water; mix until water is combined
      • 5. Remove from heat and set aside
      • 6. Make beef- in a skillet heat oil and garlic
      • 7. Add in beef and cook until brown
      • 8. Add in tomatoes, spices, and hot sauce; let cook for 3-5 minutes then remove from heat and set aside
      • 9. Make guacamole and chop lettuce, tomato, and onions for layer 7
      • 10. Once all the layers are prepared, start assembling in your dish; serve and enjoy!
      • 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!

        Tomato Cucumber Salad with Crispy Chickpeas (& Green Yogurt Dressing)

        This Tomato Cucumber Salad with Crispy Cumin Chickpeas & Green Yogurt Dressing is my new favorite cucumber tomato salad to date. This vegetarian cucumber salad is made with fresh tomatoes and cucumbers, easy pickled onions, crunchy cumin roasted chickpeas, and paired with an amazing dairy-free yogurt dressing that is packed with herbs. Made in partnership with Silk Almondmilk Yogurt Alternative.

        Cucumber Tomato Salad

        Cucumber Tomato Salad

        I am excited to partner with Silk today for this recipe. We absolutely love using Silk Almondmilk Yogurt Alternative in our recipes! It’s creamy and mimics traditional yogurt perfectly, especially for yogurt dressing! There are five delicious flavors in single-serve cups which have 5-6g protein from California almonds. They also now have NEW Almondmilk 24oz tubs (Plain & Vanilla) which are great for a variety of occasions. All these products have 7-8g protein from California almonds and offer a smooth, creamy texture!

        Dairy Free Yogurt Salad Dressing Recipe

        How do you make a tomato cucumber salad

        This salad is:

        • Flavorful
        • Fresh
        • Packed with a crunch
        • Nutritious
        • Great for a party

        How do you make a tomato cucumber salad ingredients

        Use Silk’s store locator to find Silk Almond Dairy Free Yogurt Alternative in your area, and visit https://silk.com/spoonfulofsilk for a coupon!

        Dairy Free Yogurt Salad Dressing

        How do you make crispy chickpeas:

        1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
        2. Drain and rinse chickpeas really well. Pour on to clean kitchen towel and rub chickpeas dry. The skins will start to loosen.
        3. Place dried chickpeas in large bowl leaving behind any skins. Add 1 tablespoon oil, salt and pepper and toss to coat. Place chickpeas on baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes.
        4. Place chickpeas back in bowl and toss to coat with remaining 1 tablespoon oil, cumin, garlic powder and lemon zest. Place back on baking sheet and continue baking for 5 minutes.  Let cool.

        Tomato Cucumber Salad with Crispy Roasted Chickpeas

        If you like this salad recipe, you’ll also love these fresh salads:

        Tomato and Cucumber Salad with Crispy Chickpeas and Green Yogurt Dressing

        Prep Time 00:20 Cook Time 00:45 Total Time 1:05 Yields 4

        Ingredients

        For Crispy Chickpeas

        • 2-15oz cans chickpeas
        • 2 tablespoon oil, divided
        • 1 teaspoon salt
        • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
        • 1 teaspoon cumin
        • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
        • Zest from 1 lemon

        For Quick Pickled Red Onion

        For Green Yogurt Dressing

        • 1 1/2 cup Silk Almond Milk Plain Yogurt
        • 3 garlic cloves
        • 1/4 cup cilantro
        • 1/4 cup dill
        • 1/4 cup parsley
        • 2 scallions, roughly chopped
        • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
        • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
        • 1/2 teaspoon salt
        • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
        • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
        • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

        For Base Salad

        • 3 tomatoes, rough chopped
        • 1/2 large english cucumber or 1 cucumber, sliced
        • 1 cup roasted red pepper, rough chopped
        • 1 cup pickled red onion or pepperoncini (see notes)
        • 1 scallion, sliced
        • 1 cup feta (optional)

        Directions

        Make chickpeas: 

        1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
        2. Drain and rinse chickpeas really well. Pour on to clean kitchen towel and rub chickpeas dry. The skins will start to loosen.
        3. Place dried chickpeas in large bowl leaving behind any skins. Add 1 tablespoon oil, salt and pepper and toss to coat. Place chickpeas on baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes.
        4. Place chickpeas back in bowl and toss to coat with remaining 1 tablespoon oil, cumin, garlic powder and lemon zest. Place back on baking sheet and continue baking for 5 minutes. 
        5. Let cool.

        Make Quick-Pickled Red Onion:

        1. Put 2 cups water in medium sauce pan and bring to boil.
        2. Place 3/4 cup vinegar, 1/4 cup water, salt, honey and peppercorns in mason jar.
        3. Once water has boiled, turn off heat and place in onion slices. Leave in hot water for 1 minute.
        4. Drain and using tongs place blanched onions inside mason jar.
        5. Place in refrigerator to cool at least 30 minutes.

        Make Dressing:

        1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until dressing just starts to tint green.

        Assemble Salad: 

        1. Toss tomato, cucumber, roasted peppers, scallions, optional feta and 1 cup pickled onions and season to taste with sea salt and ground pepper.
        2. Add 1/3 cup of dressing and toss.
        3. When ready to serve top with crispy chickpeas.

        Recipe Notes

        1. This salad taste phenomenal with the pickled red onion, but if you preferred to skip this step you can swap it out with pepperoncini.
        2. This salad is best served the day it is made, but if you prefer to make ahead for meal prep keep the chickpeas separate and add when ready to serve only to ensure crispness.
        3. Crispy chickpeas will keep for 5 days at room temperature in a sealed jar.
        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!

        This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Silk. The opinions and text are all mine.