This mango lime summer quinoa salad is a refreshing cold summer quinoa salad full of fruits and vegetables. Perfect for any cookout or barbecue!
This recipe originally appeared in June, 2016. Photos were updated in June, 2019.
I just got back from a ladies’ getaway weekend with my mom and sisters. We went to Montauk to celebrate my mom’s 60th birthday. I have never been to Montauk, let alone Long Island, so it was a fun and exploratory trip.
I’m planning to do a recap of what we did in a little travel guide in case you ever plan on traveling there. It is a truly beautiful place!
In the meantime, it seems like the summer is here in full force. It is not making running outside easy, especially when I’m pushing a stroller, but I must say, I am doing a pretty good job of drinking enough water and staying hydrated.
Especially because I can’t stop won’t stop eating all the summer fruits and produce.
Today’s summer quinoa salad is the perfect answer to that warm weather, and makes for a great side dish option.
Barbecues, cookouts, cold, summer quinoa salads, grilled meats and fresh veggies, watermelon, pasta salads, grilled corn on the cob, potato salad, ice cream cakes..all of the above scream summer to me.
I’ve also found myself snacking on these energy bites and so much fresh fruit in this weather. I can’t be stopped.
Summer foods are my favorite. Isn’t it fascinating how weather can change what foods you want and crave? I’ve always thought that is interesting.
Why You Should Make This Healthy Quinoa Salad
That being said, there’s nothing like a cold summer salad to bring to your summer barbecues. Myself, I’m a huge pasta salad fan too. But this is a whole new level of fun and crazy. And don’t we all want more summer salad recipes? I feel like I’m always searching for one.
This summer quinoa salad is a perfect cold, refreshing dish to bring to your next cookout or get-together.
Cooked quinoa is a magical little ingredient. Did you know that just a 1/2 cup (dry) serving of quinoa has 12 grams of protein? You could easily up that in by adding in some beans or even more cheese!
Plus, quinoa is a complete protein, meaning it has all the essential amino acids (protein building blocks) our bodies need, just like any meat would. We need a balance of different amino acids for our bodies to function properly and optimally.
Quinoa is also a great source of magnesium, B6, iron and copper, among other key minerals. And it’s naturally gluten free!
How To Make A Summer Quinoa Salad
So, let’s talk about how to make this easy quinoa salad recipe.
First, you’ll gather your ingredients. Bonus points if you get some of them from your own garden, or even the farmer’s market!
What You Need To Make A Mango Quinoa Salad
- rinsed quinoa
- lime (you could also use lime juice)
- olive oil
- cheese (feta works really well)
If you want to keep this as a vegan quinoa salad, leave out the cheese or use a vegan replacement option!
I don’t know what it is but I get so excited to add fruit to my salads in the summer. To me, it’s an energizing and refreshing addition that provides a subtle sweetness.
And mango and lime in quinoa salad together is such a refreshing combination. One that makes this one of my favorite for kids, too.
I chose to chop the mango to get more flavor in small bites. But, you can also leave them in longer slices if you’d prefer.
To me, the use of fresh, whole foods, makes this dish appealing to the taste buds and the body. The mango and cucumber make for such a winning combination! And as I’ve learned, mango and lime together are also very delicious.
I know people either love cilantro or hate it, at least that’s the word on the street. Well, I like it, but I don’t love it, meaning I won’t go out of my way to buy it in the grocery store.
But if I find it, I’m down to find a use for it in the kitchen, like in this salad that you’ll want to bring to your next cookout.
Add everything to a large bowl.
I also added a splash of this olive oil (a high quality tasting one), but that is completely optional. A small pinch of lemon juice is also a great addition if you so choose.
The juice from the lime, the fresh fruits and veggies, and the cilantro give it a kick of flavor on its own where you don’t even need the dressing. I just don’t like dry textures, so I opted for some olive lime seasoning.
- 2 cups quinoa
- 3/4 cup grape tomatoes, halved
- 1 cucumber, peeled and diced
- 1 avocado, sliced
- 1 mango, peeled and diced
- 2 tbsp chopped cilantro
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/3 cup feta cheese, substitute with nutritional yeast if vegan
- 1/8 tsp garlic salt, optional
- Juice of 2 limes
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Cook quinoa according to package directions and let cool.
- Cut your grape tomatoes, cucumber, avocado, mango and cilantro.
- Once the quinoa is cooled, mix in olive oil and juice from the lime and mix around.
- Top with feta cheese and/or nutritional yeast, and salt and pepper to taste
Remember to add time to let the quinoa cool.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 243 Total Fat: 10g Saturated Fat: 1g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 8g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 159mg Carbohydrates: 36g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 7g Sugar: 16g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 6g
Can You Make This Mango Quinoa Salad Ahead of Time?
Absolutely! That’s the best way to make a summer quinoa salad – let the flavors sit and marinade. Cold pasta salads and summer salads are my absolute favoriteee, like my hummus pasta salad.
But I’m not here to pick favorites.
Another great reason to make this mango quinoa salad ahead of time is if you’re serving it to a large group, free your hands up for some other dishes to make day of. Just put this together the night before and then it’s a great option as lunch or dinner.
Quinoa is great as leftovers so you could even cook the quinoa ahead of time and chop the produce as needed.
Other Mix In Ideas
If you happen to be out of some of these ingredients, or just want to switch it up, here are some other ideas and options:
- red onion
- red bell pepper
- black beans
- green onion
- chicken, or any source of protein
What Should You Pair With Summer Quinoa Salad?
To make this summer quinoa salad vegan, just leave out the cheese or use nutritional yeast. Or, if you’re looking to add some meat or protein to it, consider some grilled chicken, eggs, garbanzo beans, or I even think salmon would be a delicious winner as well.
I love quinoa recipes because they are great as meal prep snacks and meals.
I originally made his whole recipe thinking I’d be able to save half of it for a cookout the upcoming weekend, but instead,
we I ate it all and I had to make another bowl’s worth.
It definitely wasn’t the worst thing that could have happened. Good thing it’s quick and easy!
I hope you’ll share this summer recipe with your friends and enjoy it and if you make it, please leave a rating and comment below.
Pin it for later!
Want More Delicious Quinoa Recipes?
Do you like quinoa recipes, or looking for more quinoa recipes for kids?
All work great as meal prep snacks, too!
Don’t forget to let me know if you make it.
Questions for you,
Are you a cilantro lover or hater?
What’s your most refreshing vegetable?