Guest Post: Love Leftovers & Quinoa Bean Salad

Thanks to Marci for contributing a guest blog post while I’m honeymooning! Her quinoa salad looks fantastic!

Like many of you, I love to cook but don’t always have the kind of time I’d like to devote to it. But one of my favorite things about summer cooking is all of the great make-ahead, all-in-one meals that can sit in your fridge for a few days. One dish, leftover meals are awesome for so many reasons:

  1. Saves time during a hectic work week
  2. Makes a great lunch if you’re sick of sandwiches
  3. Saves money when you skip eating out
  4. Saves on the cost of your utility bills
  5. If you have a small space (like I do), less cooking means less heat in the summer months
  6. They often get better after marinating for a day or so.

I thought I would share with you one of my favorite summer-time staples: Bean Salad with Quinoa. The quinoa and beans add plenty of protein and fiber for staying power. Plus all of the ingredients (save the veggies) are kitchen staples, so this dish is really easy to whip up and is incredibly inexpensive. Feel free to play around with the ingredients, adding other veggies, swapping out beans. It makes a big serving which can be great for a potluck or freezes well. Enjoy!

Dressing Ingredients: Combine in a large bowl, whisk together well.
3 T extra-virgin olive oil
3 T canola oil
3 T balsamic vinegar (or any other vinegar you have on hand, probably not white though)
2 tsp honey or agave
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (more if you like spice!)
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 clover garlic, minced

Salad Ingredients:
1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 15 oz can cannelini beans, dranied and rinsed
1 15 oz can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa, cooled
1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed
1 cup green bell pepper, diced (I use red pepper, taste preference)
1 cup celery, chopped (I don’t love, so I leave it out)
3 scallions (green onion), finely chopped
2 T fresh parsley, chopped

Add salad ingredients to the dressing, mix well, and chill for about an hour.  Store in the refrigerator for up to five days.  I ate my salad with corn chips and some fruit.  Delicious!

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Marci Anderson MS, RD, cPT owns Marci RD Nutrition in Cambridge, MA. Her practice specializes in treating eating disorders and weight and body concerns. You can check out her blog at www.marciRD.com or follow her on Twitter @marciRD. She loves using social media to promote happy eating and a healthy relationship with food.

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