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Food 52’s Healthiest: Lemon Tri-color Quinoa Tabbouleh

Every Tuesday, we scan Food52′s delectable menu of recipes for the healthiest picks they’ve got—bringing you seasonal, scrumptious fare that’s really good for you.

This colorful salad is a protein-packed twist on traditional Tabbouleh, and it’s a great way to take advantage of the end-of-summer tomato surplus at the farmer’s market.

Lemon Tri-color Quinoa Tabbouleh
Serves 6-8

1 cup tri-color quinoa
1 1/2 cup water
1/2 bunch watercress or other green (like parsley or cilantro)
1/2 bunch mint
6-8 mini red, yellow orange peppers, diced (or use 1/2 each of red, yellow, orange bell peppers)
1/2 cup heirloom cherry tomatoes, diced
1 cucumber, seeded and diced
1/4 cup flavored olive oil ( I used a harissa flavored one)
1/4 cup neutral oil
1/4 cup orange champagne vinegar (I used the one from trader joes)
1 lemon, juiced
kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper, to taste.

1. Boil quinoa in 1 1/2 c. of salted water…turn down immediately to a low simmer, cover and cook 10 minutes. Take off heat, let stand 5 minutes. You can then chill grains overnight. If prepping for the next day, wait to add dressing before using, or bring an additional amount to add.

2. Add diced veggies and herbs. Original tabbouleh calls for flat leafed parsley but I like the peppery flavor of watercress and the zing of mint.

3. Mix together oils and vinegar with lemon juice and salt and pepper with a whisk. If you want a bit of sweetness, but don’t have an orange muscat champagne vinegar…add 1 T. orange marmalade or honey and 1 T. OJ to 1/4 c. vinegar.

4. Serve with baked pita chips or torn pieces of warm pita bread.

5. This salad is great for vegans, vegetarians and those with gluten sensitivites…if you want to make it more of a main dish salad, add some roasted chicken or fish (or for those vegan/vegetarian friends, grilled tempeh).

More Healthy Recipes from

Salmon Roe and Cucumber Salad
Eggplant Dip with Yogurt (Borani-e Bademjan)