How I love salads that is not a tiny portion on the side but a full fledged nutritious meal. Something which is fresh , seasonal , wholesome and makes a hassle free meal. Today I am excited to share this power packed skinny quinoa Waldorf salad which is vegan as well as gluten free.
This version is my skinny spin on the classic Waldorf salad.
What is Waldorf Salad ?
This salad comes with some history. I will link it at the end of the post if you want a good read .
It was created at Waldorf Hotel in New York City. It comprises of fresh apples, grapes, walnuts, celery , lettuce and mayonnaise is used as a dressing.
I had this for the very first time in New York and just fell in love with it.
This salad is all about texture . The ingredients are so different from one another but when put together , it has a flavor explosion.
The juicy crunch of fresh apples, the strong punch of celery , sweet and sour grapes and raisins plus the earthiness of walnuts is just irresistible.
I started making this classic Waldorf salad at home as a side dish.
What’s the Skinny spin here ?
I have substituted mayonnaise with coconut yogurt. Thanks to my sister in law Meetha for introducing me to it. It’s light , creamy and so so delicious.
Plus I have used quinoa which promotes this side dish salad to a main meal.
This is the first time I have made it as a meal and substituted mayonnaise with yogurt alone . And oh boy I didn’t even miss mayo. We had it 2 days in a row and I thought this is worth a share.
It’s been over a week that I haven’t posted anything. This is because I was on a holiday. We went to visit our family in Texas . You know how it is when you are on a holiday – lot of feasting and eating out. There are no rules , come onnnn it’s a holiday. But now that we are back home it’s time to get back on track. We were craving for super simple meal which is light on the tummy. Not spicy nor greasy but something that is still delicious . There is so much to unpack , laundry , running errands , phewww … least I want is to make an elaborate meal .
I made a quick trip to the grocery store to stock up veggies and fruits for this week .
It’s fall season , that means whenever you enter a grocery store all you will see is loads of pumpkins and apples .
So what do I do , follow the crowd and stock on both.
Using seasonal produce is always a good idea and the moment I saw apples I knew today’s meal would be our house favorite Waldorf salad . So I even picked up celery , red grapes and a box of spring mix .I wanted to make it as a meal , something that is filling so decided to add quinoa . As you know Quinoa is a great superfood , an amazing super grain loaded with protein , fiber and so much more.
Quinoa doesn’t require pre soaking or long cooking time. It is one of the easiest grain to cook . Quinoa makes an excellent and effective addition to any busy day meal.
Skinny quinoa waldorf salad (vegan ) ( gluten-free)
- For the salad
- 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
- 2 cups washed and cleaned Assorted chopped greens / spring mix
- 1 cup chopped fresh apples
- 1 cup grapes halved
- 1/2 cup pecans/ walnuts
- 1/2 cup sliced celery
- ¼ cup raisins / dried cranberries
- For dressing
- 6 tbsp coconut yogurt*
- 2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoon lime juice
- 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoon agave
- 1 tablespoon water if needed
- Salt to taste
- Pinch of black pepper or to taste
- Slices of apple optional
Cook quinoa according to the package.
In a small bowl just mix everything mentioned for the dressing .
In a big mixing bowl throw in the spring mix , add in quinoa and the other toppings mentioned.
Spoon in the dressing as desired.
Adjust the lemon or salt if needed.
Top with slices of apples.
If you are not using pre rinsed quinoa do rinse it well before cooking.
You can cook quinoa on the stove top or pressure cooker .
Make a big batch of quinoa and make this or any other salad in a flash.
Cooked quinoa stays well in the fridge for 6-10 days.
You can use soy , greek yogurt or yogurt of your choice .
Add in a teaspoon or two water if dressing seems thick to adjust to your preference .
Leftover dressing if any can be refrigerated up to 2 days.
You may sub quinoa with your choice of grains too.
I have used baby arugula , baby spinach and lettuce as greens . Use any of your choice.
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A good read on classic Waldorf salad here.