You guys know that a grain salad bowl is one of my favorite easy, portable lunches – they’re filling and satisfying and the variations are endless! This quinoa salad takes it to the next level with orange-infused quinoa and an orange vinaigrette for maximum fresh flavor. Thank you to the Florida Department of Citrus for sponsoring this post!
Now that it’s the new year, I have a feeling you guys may be looking for some nutritious packed lunch ideas that are also tasty and not boring, so I thought this recipe would be well timed!
I love having grain salad bowls for lunch because they keep me full by packing in plenty of veggies, fiber, and protein, and they lend themselves to lots of flavor and texture combinations. This salad has all the key components of a filling grain salad bowl: whole grains, beans for protein, leafy greens for volume, healthy fats for satiety and a yummy dressing to tie it all together. (If you’re on the hunt for more grain salad bowl ideas, check out my mix & match grain salad bowl recipes!)
The star of this recipe is the Florida Orange Juice, which does double duty in the quinoa AND the vinaigrette.
Cooking the quinoa in a mixture of vegetable broth and orange juice adds a sweet, tangy flavor while still keeping this a savory dish. On its own this is the most flavorful quinoa I’ve ever had – and the dressing and mix-ins make it even better!
Tossing everything together with a simple orange vinaigrette keeps the salad from being too dry, and amps up the flavor even more. I like taking shortcuts with recipes to make them faster and easier (things like buying canned beans and pre-washed salad greens, using 90 second brown rice, etc.), but one thing I always love to do is make my own homemade salad dressing. It’s so easy and the flavor is always way better! This one is especially delicious thanks to the tangy orange juice.
If your goal is to eat healthier in the new year, think about adding rather than subtracting; adding in a healthy, balanced lunch is a great place to start.
I hope you’ll give this easy salad recipe a try. Let me know how you like it – here’s the full recipe!
For the orange vinaigrette
What’s your favorite way to use Florida Orange Juice? Do you drink it straight or use it in recipes?