Cranberry Quinoa Salad with Dairy-Free Caesar Dressing

by Amie on November 12, 2012

I don’t know about you but I’m a huge fan of quinoa for my clients. There’s just something about it that gets me every time.

I am not, however, a fan of quinoa soaked in oil and butter. Or with three cups of oil in it, like how they make it in some restaurants.

Last week I knew I wanted to develop a new recipe for a light quinoa salad but I wasn’t quite sure what it was going to end up looking like in the end. Originally I thought it might be savory but once I spotted some dried cranberries and lemon- it turned into a sweet lil’ dish. And I realized it was much more a healthy quinoa dish than anything you’d get when eating out.

Hence, this quinoa salad was born.  It tastes like a creamy cranberry dessert in a bowl with a whole lotta protein. Yes, believe me. It does.  A little less sweet than a dessert, making it the perfect vehicle for your lunchtime manja or an evening munchie.

I guess I have a lil’ bit of a habit of creating salads…but what can I say?

They’re just so darn good.

And this one is by far another big ol’ winner in a bowl.

So, get your fork out and get your salad on, people.


O, and one more thing. This Caesar Dressing is going to ROCK YOUR WORLD.

Now head on over to Yum Universe for a fabulous Orange Ginger Cranberry Sauce.

 And don’t forget to head over to my Facebook Page starting December 1st where I’m hosting the ’25 Days of Christmas’ Giveaway Every Day. I’ll be giving away a new gluten-free gift everyday from December 1st-December 25th.
Enjoy and Good Luck!

5.0 from 1 reviews

Cranberry Quinoa Salad with Dairy-Free Caesar Dressing
Recipe type: Entree
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Vegan
  • For Salad:
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped
  • 2 cups mixed greens such as spinach and arugula
  • For Dressing:
  • ¼ cup cashews
  • ⅛ cup pine nuts
  • 2 tsp. white miso paste
  • ¼ tsp. agave nectar
  • ½ cup water
  • 3 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon zest
  • ¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • ¼ tsp. sea salt
  • ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  1. Cook quinoa according to directions.
  2. Meanwhile, combine all dressing ingredients in a blender; process until smooth. Add more water, if necessary.
  3. In a large serving bowl, combine cooked quinoa, dried cranberries, scallions and mixed greens; gently toss with Caesar dressing to coat.
  4. Serve chilled.
Serving Size: ½ cup Calories: 305.3 cal • Fat: 9.9 g • Protein: 9.3 g • Carb: 47.8 g • Fiber: 5.5 g • Sugar: 11.5 g • Sodium: 251.2 mg



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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

sunithi November 12, 2012 at 2:13 pm

This looks so festive and healthy I could eat the whole bowl. Beautiful pics and recipe. Pinning & making this soon :) !


Amie November 12, 2012 at 2:19 pm

Thanks Sue; have a great afternoon!


Alyssa | Queen of Quinoa November 12, 2012 at 2:22 pm

Yet another lovely quinoa recipe! You’re always thinking of creative ways to use my favorite little superfood. I love it! Keep ‘em coming :) xo!


Amie November 12, 2012 at 2:30 pm

Thanks Alyssa; hope you enjoy it. Have a great afternoon!


Cyndy November 15, 2012 at 10:55 am

I’d like to try this – but I’m on a low carb vegetarian diet. I’ll have to figure out the nutritional data first.


Amie November 15, 2012 at 5:48 pm

Thanks Cyndy; so nice to hear from you. All the nutritional information is at the bottom of each recipe. Let me know if you don’t see it and I can send it to you directly. Have a great night!


Joan February 16, 2013 at 2:21 am

looks amazing! I know we would all love this in my house! The calories are a lot though! Is there a way to tone down the calories? Joan


Nicole stephan January 22, 2014 at 11:07 pm

Amie, I made this dressing tonight and it was fabulous…so unique for my dairy-free palate :-). I added it to a finely chopped baby kale salmon salad with cucumbers, roasted almonds, kalamata olives, red peppers, artichokes, shallots. It was delicious. The olives may have clashed a bit. Thank you for posting!


Amie January 22, 2014 at 11:13 pm

SO happy to hear that Nicole; yea! Have a wonderful night and thank you so much. So glad you had a lovely dinner! I always LOVE hearing from my readers when they make my recipes; thank you for sharing!


Sahirah March 4, 2014 at 9:49 am

Hi! Just stumbled on your blog and I love it. God bless you for educating people on how to eat (truly) healthy. I am allergic to cashews and pine nuts could I use Raw peanut butter and how mush do I use??
Thank you


Amie March 4, 2014 at 9:52 am

Thank you so much Sahirah; great to hear from you!!! Yes you can surely use raw peanut butter; use 2 Tbsp. and enjoy!!!


Sahirah March 4, 2014 at 9:52 am



Sahirah March 4, 2014 at 9:54 am

Thank you!!


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