Whether you’re back in training or trying to eat more veggies as part of your 2019 new year’s resolution, this vegan salad recipe by nutritionist, Jessica Sepel of JSHealth is a wonderful plant-based option that ensures you’re getting your hit of protein (thanks to ingredients such as quinoa and lentils). It’s fresh, light and perfect for lunch or as a side with dinner.
This recipe uses pomegranate for a burst of acidity, but Jess advises that currants or cranberries could work just as well. The raw veggies like capsicum and carrot give it a crunchy texture and the dressing consisting of balsamic vinegar, olive oil, wholegrain mustard and maple syrup gives it the flavour burst you need so it’s not just ‘another boring salad‘.
RECIPE: JESSICA SEPEL’S VEGAN GRAIN SALAD
Serves: 2, as a main, 4 as a side
For the salad
- ½ cup raw quinoa, rinsed
- 1 tin lentils, rinsed and drained
- 1 red or yellow capsicum, cut into thin strips
- 1 carrot, grated
- 2 cups baby spinach, shredded
- ½ cup parsley leaves, finely chopped
- ½ cup dill leaves, finely chopped
For the dressing
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp wholegrain mustard
- 1 tsp maple syrup, optional
- sea salt, to taste
- black pepper, to taste
- ½ cup roasted almonds, roughly chopped
- ½ cup pomegranate arils, optional
- 2 tbsp mixed seeds (pumpkin and sunflower seeds work well)
1. Cook the quinoa as per the packet instructions. Set aside.
2. To make the dressing, combine the ingredients in a small bowl and whisk. Season to taste.
3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the quinoa and the rest of the salad ingredients. Pour over half of the dressing and toss to combine.
4. To serve, divide the grain and vegetable mix across two plates. Top with roasted almonds, pomegranate arils (if using) and a sprinkle of mixed seeds. Drizzle over the remaining dressing, to taste.