Black Bean Quinoa Salad | A Nutritionist Eats

It’s been three weeks, so clearly you need another quinoa salad, right?

I honestly feel a little behind the times with the whole quinoa salad trend.

Black Bean Quinoa Salad | A Nutritionist Eats

But as they say, better late than never! Especially because quinoa is a nutritious little seed that boasts 8 grams of (complete!) protein and 5 grams of fiber per cup (cooked). Even more than that though, I love the convenience of making a big batch of quinoa salad and eating it over greens for quick weekday lunches. The combination of beans + quinoa = one satisfying salad.

Black Bean Quinoa Salad | A Nutritionist Eats

When I was testing quinoa salad recipes for, this was one of the versions I came up with and I love it for a few reasons. One: I am currently going through a MAJOR black bean phase. Two: I love the contrast of the light quinoa and dark bean. (It’s purely a cosmetic reason.) Three: CHEESE! (No explanation necessary.)

Black Bean Quinoa Salad | A Nutritionist Eats

Serve it alongside grilled chicken for dinner or bring it to your next summer party, it’s sure to be a hit!

nutrition facts: 584 calories, 29 grams of fat, 59 grams carbohydrates, 14 grams fiber, 3 grams sugar, 23 grams protein

Black Bean Quinoa Salad

by Emily Dingmann

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Keywords: entree salad side gluten-free high fiber vegetarian high protein

Ingredients (6 servings)

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • vegetable broth (optional)
  • 1/4 cup lime juice (about 1 lime)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil plus 1 Tbsp
  • 1 shallot
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • salt & pepper
  • 2-15 oz cans black beans
  • 1/2 cup sliced green onion
  • 1 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 cup crumbled cojita cheese


Prepare quinoa: Rinse quinoa in fine mesh strainer.

Add quinoa and 2 cups water to small pan. (I’ve started adding broth to the cooking liquid. Two cups total liquid.)

Stir, season with salt and bring to a boil.

Lower heat, cover and cook for about 15 minutes.

Prepare vinaigrette: while quinoa is cooking, whisk together lime juice, olive oil, honey, shallot and salt & pepper.

Remove quinoa from heat and let sit for 5 minutes.

Fluff with a fork and toss with vinaigrette.

Drain and rinse black beans.

When quinoa is cool, toss with remaining ingredients. Chill for at least 3 hours or overnight.

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13 Comments (Reply )

  1. Mercedes
    Jul 01, 2014 @ 9:27 am

    Alright I clearly need to pick up some cojita cheese! This looks like the perfect side dish to any dinner and I love that quinoa feels like eating a carb, but it has all of that protein!


  2. allie@sweetpotatobites
    Jul 01, 2014 @ 10:54 am

    Quinoa salad is the best – True Food Kitchen has a Mediterranean quinoa salad that I can’t get enough of.

    I like how you added in black beans for extra protein!


    • Emily
      Jul 02, 2014 @ 10:21 am

      Can you believe that I’ve never been to True Food?! I think I’ve had take out/catering but I need to get there ASAP.


  3. sarah k @ the pajama chef
    Jul 01, 2014 @ 1:58 pm

    i love quinoa & black beans together..but never add cheese. i’ll have to remedy that soon!


  4. Chelsea @ Designs on Dinner
    Jul 02, 2014 @ 7:52 am

    I’m late on the quinoa train, too! I really should work it into my regular rotation, but it’s still a couple-times-a-year type of thing. I love this recipe, though!


    • Emily
      Jul 02, 2014 @ 10:34 am

      Same, but then once I started I couldn’t stop! :)


  5. Alexa
    Jul 02, 2014 @ 8:26 am

    Thinking I’m going to sub feta for the cheese, and this will be a great 4th of July weekend, hot weather treat!


    • Emily
      Jul 02, 2014 @ 10:37 am

      Feta would be a great sub (they are so similar)!


  6. Judee@ Gluten Free A-Z Blog
    Jul 03, 2014 @ 6:45 am

    Looks like a delicious salad that is versatile enough to satifsy most allergies. Your photos are fabulous.


    • Emily
      Jul 03, 2014 @ 10:05 am

      Thanks so much Judee!


  7. Michelle {The Lively Kitchen}
    Jul 07, 2014 @ 5:55 pm

    Fantastic photos! I haven’t had a quinoa salad in a long time – need to remedy that. Addition of cheese is brilliant!


  8. Maris (In Good Taste)
    Jul 07, 2014 @ 6:26 pm

    I agree with you on behind behind on the quinoa salad trend. I’ve been eating and enjoying them for plenty of time but only recently started making it and thinking: “what can I actually do what this?”


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