Confetti Quinoa Salad – One of my family’s all time favorite recipes, this fresh, colorful quinoa salad is perfect for picnics, potlucks, barbecues, lunches, meal prep, and more!
In the years I’ve been blogging, I think this is the recipe my family (my sisters, mom, etc.) has made the most. It’s shown up at church potlucks, family get-togethers, vacations, holidays, and more. It’s everything good about quinoa salad–it has bright, fresh flavors, a delicious dressing, and it keeps well, which means you can serve it for a party or make it for a few days of healthy lunches.
I call it Confetti Quinoa Salad because of all the different colors flecked throughout. It’s got so much yummy flavor packed in there–from the creamy black beans, to the sweet mango, luscious avocado, bright bell pepper, and tangy dressing. With the weather warming up, this refreshing salad is sure to be one of your favorites!
Notes on the Recipe:
How long will this keep? It’s a little surprising (considering there is diced avocado in the recipe), but it’ll look fresh and vibrant for at LEAST 3-4 days, sometimes longer. the lime in the dressing works its magic to keep the avocado from browning.
It keeps really well in mason jars (I don’t layer it–I just put the mixed salad in jars and screw on a reusable lid). Otherwise, just be sure to put it in an airtight container since minimizing the air will keep the avocado and mango from oxidizing.
Change it Up. I’ve made this a LOT of different ways over the years–I’ve tried peaches instead of mangoes (it’s delicious), and I’ve tried adding a pinch of cumin or chili powder to the dressing, or finished things off with a little fresh cilantro. It’s pretty flexible! Don’t hesitate to play with the flavors.
Honey, honey. Depending on how sweet your mango is, you may want to add a small drizzle of honey (or agave) to your dressing. It’s really nice with the added kiss of sweetness, but not always necessary. Follow your tastebuds!
How do you cook quinoa? Your package will give you directions, but my favorite method is here. When I first started cooking quinoa 7 years ago, I didn’t rinse it, but these days, I ALWAYS rinse it before cooking. It removes some of the strong outer flavor and bitterness that can sometimes linger. You can use any kind of quinoa you like here–red, white, or a tricolor mix.
What if I don’t like quinoa? You *can* use cooked, cooled rice, or simply toss this mixture with greens for a fresh take.
Like this recipe? You might also like:
- Spring Roll Quinoa Salad with Coconut Peanut Drizzle (awesome for meal prep!)
- How to Cook Quinoa
- Our Favorite Pasta Salad
One of my favorite meal prep salads! The lime vinaigrette keeps the avocado green, so this makes terrific lunches for a few days! (Gluten free & vegan)
- 3 c cooked quinoa, cooled
- 1 (14.5oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 mango, diced
- 1 avocado, diced (optional)
- 1 green onion, sliced
- 1/4 c cilantro, chopped (optional)
- 3 Tbsp lime juice
- 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp honey (optional, if needed)
- 1/4 tsp pepper, or to taste
- 1/4 tsp salt, or to taste
- In a large bowl, combine quinoa, beans, bell pepper, mango, avocado, green onion, and cilantro. Drizzle over lime juice, olive oil, vinegar, (honey, if using), salt, and pepper. Gently toss to coat.
- Chill until ready to serve.