Quinoa Salad with Tofu and Ginger Vinaigrette



Very often when I introduce the healthy grain Quinoa to a client..I receive a blank stare..

What is Quinoa?
Quinoa is pronounced (KEEN-wah).  It has a nutty taste and chewy texture, is flavorful as well as filling.
Quinoa has many health benefits:
1.    Is a POWER PROTEIN:  contains all eight amino acids to make it a complete protein
2.    Has a protein content equal to milk
3.    Alternative to meat, egg and dairy products as a protein source
4.    High in Calcium, thus a BONE BUILDER
5.    Rich in FIBER, in return is digested slowly
6  .  DIETERS DREAM:  high in vitamins B and folate, minerals and protein, while low in fat and calories
7.    GLUTEN FREE, and could be enjoyed by people with digestive disorders
9.    A cup of quinoa offers 15% of the U.S. Recommended Daily Allowance of iron
10.  Boosts energy and brain power

Quinoa Salad with Tofu and Ginger Vinaigrette


    • For the salad:
    • 1 cup of red, black, or white quinoa, rinsed
    • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
    • 1/2 pound tofu, sliced 1/2 inch think or cubed or your choice of animal protein
    • 1 tablespoon canola oil
    • 1 to 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
    • 6 ounces snow peas, sugar snap peas, or broccoli crowns steamed or blanched for 3 to 5 minutes
    • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
    • 1/4 cup chopped scallions

    • For the dressing:
    • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
    • 2 tablespoons Asian sesame oil or walnut oil
    • 2 tablespoons canola oil
    • 2 tablespoons buttermilk
    • 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
    • 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
    • 1 small garlic clove, minced


  • To make the Quinoa:

    1. Heat a heavy saucepan over medium high heat..
    2. Add Quinoa, 1  1/4 cups water and 1/2  teaspoon salt and bring to bring to a boil
    3. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the quinoa is tender
    4. Water should be evaporated…shut heat off
    5. Cover the pan and allow to sit undisturbed for 10 min
    6. Uncover and transfer the quinoa to a large bowl
  • To make Tofu:

    1. Pat the tofu dry with paper towels, pressing on it to extract excess water
    2. Cut into 1/2 inch strips and dice
    3. Heat the oil in a heavy nonstick skillet over medium high heat and add the tofu
    4. Cook, stirring or shaking the pan, until the tofu is golden, about 5 minutes
    5. Add soy sauce to taste and toss together
    6. Remove from the heat and add to the bowl with the quinoa
    7. Stir in the veggies, cilantro, and scallions
  • To make the dressing:

    1. Whisk together the lime juice, ginger, garlic, soy sauce, sesame or walnut oil, canola oil, and buttermilk
    2. Toss with the quinoa mixture

Don’t be intimated by Quinoa, it is just a Healthy Grain!!!!!
xo jen

13 responses »

    • Actually you can make your own buttermilk

      Place in a 1 cup measuring cup
      1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar or lemon juice
      add milk until the liquid measures 1 cup

      Mix and let stand for 5 minutes….

      I use buttermilk as it is a whole food unless you are lactose intolerant….
      What is your concern with buttermilk?

  1. Hey Jen –

    This salad is sooo delicious! I had some quinoa left over from the last time I cooked it as an company to the fish… Last night I used your recepy and it turned out absolutely mouthwatering! Thank you!

  2. Hi Jen, just catching up with your recent recipes. FYI, with regard to buttermilk – you can also substitute plain yogurt for buttermilk – using the exact measurement as you would with buttermilk.

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