Quinoa, beans, veggies, herbs, feta, nuts, protein + olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt & pepper for a high-protein quinoa salad.
Place the quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer and rinse it under cold running water for a minute to remove the bitter coating.
In a medium-sized saucepan, combine the rinsed quinoa and 2 cups of water or vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 15 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed and the quinoa is fluffy. Remove from heat and let it cool.
Cook your protein of choice (e.g., grill the chicken, pan-fry tofu, or cook tempeh according to your preference). Season it with salt and pepper and set it aside to cool before slicing or dicing it.
In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice or vinegar, minced garlic, salt, and pepper until well combined. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked and cooled quinoa, beans, diced vegetables, chopped herbs, crumbled feta cheese (if using), and chopped nuts or seeds.
Gently fold in the cooked and cooled protein of your choice into the salad mixture.
Pour the dressing over the salad and toss everything together until the salad is well-coated with the dressing. Adjust the seasoning with more salt and pepper if needed.
Serve your high-protein quinoa salad immediately, or refrigerate it for a few hours to allow the flavors to meld. It can be enjoyed as a standalone meal or as a side dish.