Quinoa salad with sweet spring peas, creamy feta and red onion with easy lemon dressing is the perfect recipe to meal prep ahead for fuss-free lunches. It’s also a great side dish for grilled chicken, fish or meat.
I love having delicious, easy and wholesome recipes like this vegetarian quinoa salad in the fridge for days when lunch time comes and I’m just not prepared. Meal prep recipes have taken over the internet and for good reason. Everybody wants to eat tasty, healthy food but we just don’t have time every day to cook from scratch. Bulk cooking ingredients and pre-planning meals is a great way to eat home-made, delicious food every day.
This salad has also been a regular feature as a side dish in our home. I love serving it with roast chicken or grilled lamb chops for a perfect family meal.
Peas and feta are a match made in heaven and are a great match for the grains in this salad. I love using a combination of quinoa and Bulgur wheat but you can totally use one or the other if you prefer. A simple lemon dressing and some beautiful fresh pea tendrils finish this salad off perfectly.
How to make quinoa salad
- How to cook quinoa for salad: Simmer 1 cup quinoa in 3 cups stock or water until the liquid has been absorbed and then cover with a lid with the heat turned off and allow to steam for 10-15 minutes until the grains are al dente. Stock adds more flavor and you could add peppercorns, lemon rind or a bay leaf to scent the quinoa even more.
- Make the quinoa salad: Combine cooked and cooled quinoa and bulgur wheat with blanched peas (frozen peas work great), thinly sliced red onion and crumbled feta cheese. To make an easy salad dressing, whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Feel free to add herbs and spices of your choice. Thyme, finely chopped rosemary and mint will be delicious as will garlic and chilli flakes. Pour the dressing over the salad, toss to combine and serve.
How long does quinoa salad last?
If kept covered in the fridge, quinoa salad can last for up to 5 days. You can also freeze the salad for up to 3 months. Just thaw completely before serving.
What can I add to this salad?
- Drained and rinsed chickpeas.
- Grilled chicken.
- Diced bell peppers.
- Cooked broccoli/cauliflower.
- Chopped dried apricots.
- Cooked shrimp.
Meal prep recipe ideas:
- Soy honey noodle salad
- Moroccan chicken couscous salad
- Mexican chicken lunch bowls
- Chicken quinoa salad with peas and feta
Side dish salad recipes
- Creamy potato salad with condensed milk dressing
- Easy creamy curried macaroni salad
- Easy marinated cucumber salad
- Simple side salad with lemon dressing
Pea and feta quinoa salad
- 1 cup quinoa
- 1 cup Bulgur wheat
- 6 cups water/stock
- pinch of salt
for the salad
- 3 cups frozen peas blanched
- 1-1½ cups crumbled feta cheese
- 1 large red onion thinly sliced
- pea tendrils, for serving (optional)
for the lemon dressing
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- Combine the quinoa, bulgur wheat and stock/water in a saucepan and season with salt. Bring to a boil and simmer uncovered until the liquid has been absorbed. Turn the heat off and cover with a lid then allow to steam for 10-15 minutes until the quinoa grains are al dente. Fluff with a fork and allow to cool to room temperature.
- Combine the cooked quinoa and Bulgur wheat with the cooked and cooled peas, feta cheese and onion.
- Mix together the dressing ingredients then pour over the salad.
- Add the pea tendrils if serving immediately otherwise keep the salad covered in the fridge for up to 5 days.
I didn’t have bulgar wheat so used brown rice with the quinoa and used sliced green onion instead of red. Served with lemon herb chicken. So good!
My family loves this dish! The only way my kids will eat peas. Thanks for the great recipe!
Your instructions mention preparing just the quinoa, however, the recipe includes bulgur too. I’m questioning this because you note the recipe yields 6 servings but both times I’ve made this with the quinoa & the bulgur, it makes A LOT. Can you clarify this? PS: delicious!!
In the recipe card at the bottom of the post you’ll see I mention cooking the bulgur with the quinoa. You can leave out the bulgur and only use quinoa if preferred. Perhaps my portions are just much larger than yours? I can feed 6 people comfortably with this amount.
Perhaps that is so. I’m calculating about 20 cups total from what I’ve given away and what I’ve used for myself. It’s not a bad thing, just making sure the nutritional information matched the finished product. Thank you!
My quinoa / Bulgur wheat combo has been cooking for like 45 minutes and the liquid is still not completely absorbed – is 6 cups of liquid a typo? I’ve never made Bulgar wheat before, but I know the ratio of quinoa to liquid is normally 2 cups liquid to 1 cup quinoa – and you cook with the lid covered, not uncovered. This is taking so long, it won’t be ready for dinner – hopefully it makes a good lunch tomorrow : /
I prefer cooking uncovered and this volume of water always works well as bulgur wheat can use a lot more water than other grains. If there’s still too much liquid once the grains are cooked, simply drain and allow to steam with the lid on for 5 minutes before using.
Really liked this.
That’s great to hear. 🙂
Made this for lunch with grilled chicken breasts as I had friends coming over and we all loved it. So easy and very tasty.
Oh yum! That sounds like a great lunch.
Mary Ann | The Beach House Kitchen
I’m always looking for new quinoa recipes Alida. And this sounds so light and fresh! On my list!
It’s perfect for lunches or light dinners, Mary Ann. You’ll love it. 🙂