Hello again from Pure Simple Wellness! Today I’m sharing my favorite alternative to pasta salad for a delicious light side dish or meal. I have been gluten-free for over 8 years. Although I enjoy pasta, I don’t eat a lot of boxed gluten-free pastas. Processed gluten-free foods are not necessarily healthy, as companies often add a lot of sugar to make it more palatable. If you just replace gluten foods like pizza, cookies, bread, etc. with the gluten free versions, it’s not necessarily a healthy alternative. In fact, some of these products can have worse implications on your blood sugar than their gluten filled counterparts. Instead I suggest you incorporate naturally gluten free grains and starches. Quinoa is one of my personal favorite naturally gf foods. Bonus: it’s packed with protein!
Here is a recipe and tips to make a delicious quinoa salad, which I usually keep for 3-5 days in the fridge:
- Rinse quinoa under cold water, to remove the saponin, which can make it taste bitter.
- Use 2 cups liquid for every 1 cup of quinoa. I prefer to use chicken or vegetable broth as it gives more flavor.
- Cook on medium heat until it boils, and then reduce heat, cover and cook for 15 minutes.
- Remove from heat. Let stand for 5 minutes and then fluff with a fork, just like rice, and enjoy.
- Mix in your favorite veggies. Here I used tomatoes and broccoli but also love adding chickpeas, cucumbers, celery, carrots, or peppers!
- Top with your favorite vinaigrette, the juice of a lemon for flavor, or simply drizzle olive oil on top. For this salad, I combined olive oil, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, a splash of honey, garlic, salt, pepper and fresh herbs.
If you plan to store in the fridge, cool completely before storing.
If you would like more information about being gluten-free, check out this gluten-free guide which walks you through the nitty gritty of what it means to be gluten free and it includes a sample 3 day meal! https://mailchi.mp/puresimplewellness.com/glutenfreelivingguide