Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

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Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is protein packed with fresh and tasty Mediterranean flavors. Made with cucumbers, tomatoes, kalamata olives, red onion, extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon and Feta cheese.

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is protein packed with fresh and tasty Mediterranean flavors. Made with cucumbers, tomatoes, kalamata olives, red onion, extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon and Feta cheese.

Great for meal prep or serve this as a side dish for chicken or fish, also great for backyard parties and BBQ’s (can’t wait for the warmer weather!) You can totally adapt this to your taste, leave out what you don’t like, add more of what you do like. Easy!

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is protein packed with fresh and tasty Mediterranean flavors. Made with cucumbers, tomatoes, kalamata olives, red onion, extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon and Feta cheese.

I had dinner at my friend Julia’s house last week, and she made a similar salad as a side dish which she served with fish although hers didn’t have tomatoes or feta (I recall she mentioned she was out). I posted a picture of it on Instagram the other day and got so many requests, most of you mentioning the feta was a must! So I made this for dinner last night, with the feta as you requested.

How To Make Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is protein packed with fresh and tasty Mediterranean flavors. Made with cucumbers, tomatoes, kalamata olives, red onion, extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon and Feta cheese.

Have lots of leftovers so I am having a big bowl of this for lunch today!

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is protein packed with fresh and tasty Mediterranean flavors. Made with cucumbers, tomatoes, kalamata olives, red onion, extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon and Feta cheese.

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is protein packed with fresh and tasty Mediterranean flavors. Made with cucumbers, tomatoes, kalamata olives, red onion, extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon and Feta cheese.

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is protein packed with fresh and tasty Mediterranean flavors. Made with cucumbers, tomatoes, kalamata olives, red onion, extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon and Feta cheese.

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is protein packed with fresh and tasty Mediterranean flavors. Made with cucumbers, tomatoes, kalamata olives, red onion, extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon and Feta cheese.

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Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is protein packed with fresh and tasty Mediterranean flavors. Made with cucumbers, tomatoes, kalamata olives, red onion, extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon and Feta cheese.
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4.95 from 18 votes
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Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

5
5
3
SP
145.5 Cals 4.5 Protein 15.5 Carbs 8 Fats
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
Total Time: 30 mins
Yield: 6 servings
COURSE: Lunch, Salad, Side Dish
CUISINE: Mediterranean
Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is protein packed with fresh and tasty Mediterranean flavors. Made with cucumbers, tomatoes, kalamata olives, red onion, extra virgin olive oil, fresh lemon and Feta cheese.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup red onion, diced
  • 1/2 - 3/4 lemon, squeezed
  • 1/4 cup about 10 kalamata olives, pitted and sliced
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups cucumber, peeled and diced (from 1 English)
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1/3 cup crumbled feta
  • salt and fresh pepper, to taste

Instructions

  • Rinse quinoa for about 2 minutes, using your hands to make sure all the saponins are removed.
  • Fill a medium pot with water, add quinoa and salt to taste and bring to a boil. When the water boils, reduce heat to low and cover; simmer covered 15 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and keep covered an additional 5 minutes without lifting the lid; then fluff with a fork and set aside in a large mixing bowl to cool.
  • While the quinoa cools, dice all the vegetables.
  • Add the red onion, olives, cucumber, tomatoes to the cooled quinoa, and squeeze 1/2 lemon over it.
  • Drizzle the olive oil over the quinoa, then add feta, salt and pepper to taste and toss well.
  • Taste for salt and adjust as needed, add more lemon juice if needed.

Nutrition

Serving: 1generous cup, Calories: 145.5kcal, Carbohydrates: 15.5g, Protein: 4.5g, Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 7.5mg, Sodium: 137mg, Fiber: 2.5g
Blue Smart Points: 5
Green Smart Points: 5
Purple Smart Points: 3
Points +: 5
Keywords: mediterranean quinoa, mediterranean quinoa recipe, Mediterranean Quinoa Salad, Mediterranean Quinoa Salad recipe, quinoa mediterranean salad

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141 comments

  1. Made this up for the family with fresh vegis from the farmer’s market and OMG it is amazing.

  2. I love this salad! But I can’t actually say that… I ended up substituting 4 cups of cauliflower for the quinoa, because I forgot to buy it at the store. I also put 2 cups of cucumber in, Instead of using half of a cucumber.  Even with those substitutions, there was plenty of flavor, and lots of crunch! It’s lower calorie, and delicious!  (keto version). Thank you for posting this!

  3. I add feta and chickpeas to mine along with fresh flat leaf parsley from my garden. Great for meal prep.

  4. I make this quite often and Love it!  How is it for making in advance?  Not the day before but early afternoon?  I want to make it before a round of golf.  Thanks in advance! 

  5. This is an easy, delicious side that is a crowd pleaser!

  6. Whenever I make your Naked Greek Feta Zucchini Turkey Burgers (so good), I double the salad and usually serve with quinoa on the side. I love the leftover salad with quinoa for lunch the next day, This is perfect!

  7. Question: The quinoa I bought is 170 calories per serving (and serving is 1/4 cup just as the recipe says). When I add in the 2 tbsp of olive oil, it goes up to 230 calories per serving before the other veggies and the feta. How do you come up with such a low calorie count?

  8. Yum yum yum.. my 12 year old just made this for us for dinner.. so tasty and healthy.. we topped ours with some marinated chicken breast and a lemon n garlic yogurt sauce

  9. This quinoa salad is so delicious!! If you’ve never had quinoa before let this be the first recipe to try. You won’t be disappointed. All the ingredients combined taste so fresh. I also follow the recipe exactly as written. Thank you Skinnytaste! I give it 10 out of 5 stars!

  10. I haven’t made this exact recipe, but I’ve made something similar with lentils, tomato bruschetta sauce, chopped artichoke hearts, cucumber, feta, quinoa, chickpeas, roasted red bell peppers, lemon zest, and lemon juice. This feeds a crowd for sure! I’ve changed things by adding sliced olives, or kalamata olives, capers, or  canned black beans. Basically, if you like to eat it, Then put it together, and it’ll be amazing! I don’t add salt because the feta and lemon add enough seasoning. Without trying this recipe, I know it’ll be amazing having used similar flavors myself. Thanks for providing a lighter version of what I’ve made. I can’t wait to try it out. 

  11. Unfortunately I didn’t have all the ingredients, but I made this quinoa with the olives, feta, lemon juice and olive oil and it was amazing. Will buy the other ingredients and remake it again!

  12. I currently have left over cooked quinoa from the Southwestern Black Bean, Quinoa and Mango Salad I made for my lunch this week (SOOOOOO good, by the way!) If this recipe calls for 1 cup of uncooked quinoa, how much do you think that is cooked? Thanks!

  13. This recipe has been a go-to of mine for awhile. Maybe it’s because I’m Greek, or maybe it’s because it’s really easy, or it might just be because it’s freaking delicious. I omit the kalamata olives, add oregano, and I eat it with pita chips. Opa!

  14. I subbed pearl cous cous for the quinoa and added a can of garbanzo beans. Delicious!

  15. Just made this and added chickpeas. Came out great except my quinoa is a little mushy 🙁 maybe I didn’t let it cool enough…

  16. This recipe is perfect just the way it is as written!! All the ingredients combined make for a very fresh tasting salad that keeps you going back for more. I have made it SEVERAL times at this point and it is so delicious!! I feel that this is a great recipe for someone who has never had quinoa before. Thank you for sharing this recipe! I absolutely love it!! I would give it 10 stars if I could.

  17. SO SO SO GOOD. My husband and I made this for dinner. Added grilled chicken and roasted red peppers, and it was so good. Great for a fresh summer dinner! 

  18. I would make this but use MCT oil. I have learned that it is better for you. 

  19. Made this salad tonight, and it was delicious!,  I used Uncle Ben’s microwave mix of brown rice and quinoa and it was so good!

  20. Simply delicious and healthy recipe, I am making it right now but it seems to beg for some fresh  herbs.    I’m adding some basil, dill, rosemary and Italian parsley.   Thank you

  21. 10000% my favorite salad on SkinnyTaste. Great for mealprepped lunches and I always pair with a piece of grilled chicken or 2 drumsticks (and an extra sprinkling of feta)!

  22. This is so good I’ve made it 2 weeks in a row! I added quartered artichoke hearts and some Italian seasoning and red pepper flakes to the quinoa while it cooked. Other than that I left it exactly as is! So good with some tilapia. Thanks for the recipe!

  23. Pingback: Weight Watchers Chicken and Quinoa Salad with Dried Fruit

  24. Pingback: Weight Watchers Chickpea & Feta Salad Recipe

  25. If I put this in a mason jar, how long do you think it’ll last in the fridge?

  26. My go to recipe for summer quinoa. We are a vegan family so we omit the feta cheese. Also tastes wonderful with cilantro. 

  27. Can I make this ahead of time & refrigerate?

  28. This was very good with fish, and my husband just raved about it. I added some fresh basil, as well, to bring out the Mediterranean flavors.

  29. I made this salad before from a vegan recipe. Followed this one except I added Italian seasoning, a little Himalayan salt, and added a little brine from olives. Delish!!!

  30. This is a very tasty dish. My recommendation would be to omit cucumbers if you plan on eating it the next day or day after as they get soggy, and cut up fresh. Will definitely make again!

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  32. Still my most favorite salad recipe you have!  Delicious! 

  33. Pingback: Bianca’s 5 Favorite Work Week Lunches » Grabbing Lapels

  34. This really is a delicious and easy salad. I make it often and enjoy the leftovers–it still tastes delicious the next day. Thank you for this awesome recipe!

  35. Made this tonight, delicious. My “anti-quinoa” husband loved it! May have put more cucs than called for, flavors really worked, refreshing.

  36. I added some boiled, chopped Garlic Scapes – so yummy

  37. Pingback: Skinnytaste Dinner Plan (Week 34) – Easy Low Cal Recipes

  38. This is also great with a can of chick peas added…

  39. Love, love, love this!

  40. This is one of my favorite Skinnytaste salads! Last night I made it with the addition of a can of rinsed/drained chick peas for a main course salad (served w/ hummus and homemade baked pita chips). Delicious.

  41. I want to thank you for this recipe. I have been making it since first posted. It is a family favorite and the first recipe I have made so often that I can now make it from memory. It will be a staple in my family for generations I am sure of it. Delicious, easy and healthy what more can you ask for. Although I think I may try it with a couple tablespoons of live saurkraut liquid for a prebiotic boost. Thank you!

  42. HOW MUCH FETA SHOULD BE USED?

  43. this is an amazing salad. Have made it 2x so far and I love it. Thanks Gina!

  44. I just made this last night and its so good! I can't wait to eat it for lunch today

  45. What brand of Quinoa do you recommend? Thank you!

  46. but it is a yummy salad. I've made it 3 times this week as its a big hit with my family!!!

  47. nutrition information is incorrect. It is way more that 145 calories and its actually closer to 222 per 1 cup serving and 39 g carbs!!!!

  48. Our new "go to" salad….delicious!!

  49. This is a fantastic approach making greek salad with quinoa!
    Loved the result!

  50. I have purchased the Sistema rice maker and it makes great foods, has great recipes and makes perfect quinoa.

    Make the 1 cup of raw pre-washed quinoa in 2 cups of flavored broth and microwave it on high 12 minutes. (Can use plain water if preferred).

    Remove from microwave and leave closed for 2 minutes. then fluff with a fork.

    Now you can add whatever you wish to it and it turns out perfect every time

    (My microwave is 900 watts) so judge accordingly for your micro wattage.

  51. I made this for dinner tonight and it was SO good. I used a little extra lemon because it's one of my favorite flavors, but it was SO good! This is going to be on heavy rotation in my house!

  52. Do you think couscous work work in place of the quinoa?

  53. I had to do things just a little differently since my husband dislikes olives and only likes red onions if they are cooked. So I omitted olives, and I sauteed the onion in a little bit of olive oil before adding it to the mix. Since I knew that omitting the olives would leave some flavor lacking, I doubled up on the onion, but still feel like there is something missing. Anyone who has made this without olives, did you substitute or simply omit? I'm trying to think what I can do to fill the void. Has anyone tried just a little bit of red wine or balsamic vinegar, and if so, how much? It's on the verge of awesome and I don't want to ruin it!

    • foodsubs.com says to sub sun dried tomatoes or capers for kalamata olives. It should be something with a concentrated taste in a small package.

  54. I made this for dinner for my husband and two kids and my parents. We ate it all up and I loved it so much I made it again to eat for lunch tomorrow. Paired wonderful with the piece of salmon on the grill…

  55. What texture should the quinoa have once done and cooled? Mine is not burnt but still seems "wet". I am waiting for it to cool as I type 🙂

  56. what is the equivalent of quinao. I don't believe I have ever seen it on the shelves in our Supermarkets.

  57. I made this yesterday and am having it for lunch today. So, so good. The feta is a must! The addition of shrimp sounds good too!

  58. do you think some fresh parsley be a good addition to this recipe?

  59. This was so good! I tried it last night with your Cilantro Lime Shrimp!

  60. This was delic! I'm so glad I now have 2 yummy quinoa recipies. Need to find me some more 🙂 tnx a bunch

  61. I made this yesterday and am enjoying leftovers for lunch. It makes a ton – how long do you think it will stay fresh?

  62. I grilled some chicken & mushrooms to add as well as substituting capers for olives. Can't do olives. Was delicious!

  63. Try adding some dried tarragon to the salad….for a flavor change.

  64. I made this today…followed the recipe but added a bit of green pepper and a couple handfuls do fresh spinach leaves (I snipped them with kitchen shears so they weren't so huge). I used more lemon juice and added some garlic. I actually whisked the lemon juice, EVOO in a bowl with the garlic, coarse sea salt & pepper. Delish! Thanks for the recipe! I have to say, make sure you use fresh tomatoes. There's nothing worse than ruining a recipe by using flavorless tomatoes!

  65. I added garbanzo beans and baby spring greens!! It was fabulous! I think a fresh avocado would be good too, I just didn't have one on hand! I did increase the lemon juice and olive oil to coat the lettuce.

  66. This was a great summer salad to have with our dinner tonight!

  67. Hi Gina. It's Julia 🙂
    Now that the garden is in full swing we have had this dish with our own fresh cukes
    Yum! I lost myself in your site tonight. Love love love the pics the recipes everything.

  68. This was delicious! My quinoa turned out a little like oatmeal, but I'm going to try one of the tips I read in the comments next time. Thanks for the recipe, Gina!

  69. This is delicious. I have never had quinoa and this looked like a good way to try it out. It was absolutely delicious. Tasted super fresh! I added chicken and divided it up for lunchs! Only 245 for 1 cup of this and 3 oz of chicken. TOTALLY AWESOME

  70. Really delicious, fresh and healthy. My new favorite salad!

  71. Made this with red quinoa, without The olive oil, and added tablespoon or so of balsamic vinegar and stuffed sweet peppers with it. Served them to my office… Now I wish I had doubled the recipe There wasn't enough! Thanks for the inspiration!

  72. I made this tonight and I have to say this is my favorite recipe of yours I've tried so far (and they are all good). Amazing! Thank you.

  73. Love this salad!!! sooo yummy 🙂 I made the whole batch on Sunday to take to work for lunch the whole week. I added in 1 can of organic black beans for extra protein. I put about 1.25 cups of the salad on top of a mix of baby spinach and arugula and put some roasted eggplant on top for a delicious medditeranian salad 🙂 yum yum yum!

  74. Hi Gina,

    Thanks for the salad Recipe. Quick Question, when I calculated the PP+, I got 4… Perhaps I missed something?

  75. I just made this to bring to a BBQ and it was delicious! They let us take home the leftovers (yay!) and I ate some with imitation crabmeat, lettuce and some blue cheese dressing. It made a great lunch.

  76. This is such an easy, healthy side dish-works well warm or cold, and is a perfect summer accompaniment to grilled meat or fish. My husband was a self-professed "quinoa hater" until I made this for the first time-now, he's disappointed if there isn't enough leftover for his next day's lunch! Thank you Gina!

  77. what is a saponin?

  78. I made this last week. I've never been a big quinoa fan, so while I really wanted to try this recipe I chickened out and only made 1 serving. Boy was THAT a mistake! It was INCREDIBLE! It was so good, I made it again the following day. My new favorite cold salad meal! The only change I made was to toss in a couple of tablespoons of black beans and chickpeas, since they were already in the fridge. Can't wait to make this again!

  79. I have been trying to like quinoa. Usually it's too bitter (I know… rinse rinse rinse). Well this recipe did it. We had it for a side dish for dinner and then I had it for lunch. I made it just as the recipe called for, and loved the salty bite of the kalamata olives and feta.

  80. LOVE THIS! I usually hate quinoa because it's so dry but this dish definitely makes me like it!

  81. Yummy. Very nice, quick dinner for a hot day, and enough for leftovers for tomorrow's lunch. My meat-and-potatoes husband was a little skeptical of this dish, but I left out the olives (a concession to him) and he was surprised to find it was pretty tasty.

  82. I was wondering, myfitnesspal lists the brand of quinoa I'm using as 380 calories for 1/2 cup (100g). Your recipe says 145 calories for a cup. Could they be referring to uncooked?

    • my cup using tons of vegetables in my serving so you can;t compare, you would have to calculate the entire recipe.

    • I calculated the entire recipe, with the brands of everything I used and got 206 calories per serving.

  83. I made this Saturday and i love it!!! It was so easy and it's pretty filling and the flavors are deelish!! Ive tried quite a few of your recipes and so far, they have all been keepers!! thanks for posting all of your recipes as it makes it easier to follow WW and I dont feel like im depriving myself.

  84. I made this yesterday and it was fantastic! Thanks!

  85. Made this last week and it was delicious.

  86. Just made this and it was awesome!!

  87. This was refreshing, full of flavor, and absolutely delicious!! I had grilled chicken with mine, and am looking forward to leftovers. Yum!!

  88. SERIOUSLY amazing! I could eat this every single day.

  89. I put this over leafy greens and drizzle with balsalmic. Bulk it up with chicken or shrimp for just a couple more p+!

  90. This is great! Whole foods makes one, but its very expensive for what you get. It's delicious cold!

  91. My calories added up to alot more and I didnt even use the onion or have enough cucumbers. Weird.

  92. Made a HUGE batch of this last night! Eating it for lunch today with some fish. I'm so excited! Is it best to eat it cold?

  93. This is fabulous!! I zested the lemon and made a vinegrette with the lemon zest, lemon juice, evoo,salt pepper and added garlic and then tossed that into the rest of the ingredients. Amazing!! I will be making this for the summer BBQs that we attend!!

    • Karen, thank you for your suggestion! I made a dressing as you describe, with the addition of 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano. Perfect!

  94. I just made this tonight and now it's my new, favorite summer salad. Tonight I had some fresh, hot naan with the salad. Tomorrow, grilled lamb. This salad is great!

  95. Will this keep well if I make it for lunch the next day?

  96. I just made this and it was awesome and so easy! I also want to add that I recently discovered this site and it has changed my life! I used to really hate cooking and I was stuck in such a rut for so long. Now, I'm excited to make new, healthy recipes that get so many complements. It really makes me feel so good about myself in so many ways. Thank you Gina! I am so grateful! 🙂

  97. I like adding a smidge of fresh dill – not enough to overpower – and it works really nicely with the olives and feta 🙂

  98. Love the flavors in this gorgeous quinoa salad, Gina! It looks delicious and perfect for spring parties. Thanks for sharing!

  99. Made this today and it is WONDERFUL! First time making Quinoa, and it turned out perfect. My tomato was not in ery good shape, so I diced up some red and orange peppers.
    Yum!

    • i just made it tonight as well, was so happy with how amazing it came out!!!! The perfect dinner for a warm and sunny day.

  100. It's really good with balsamic vinegar and I sometimes add snap peas and peppers. It's so good for lunch! Thanks Gina!

  101. What can I substitute for feta?

  102. Just adding that capers would be a good (and Mediterranean) addition if anyone likes them! Maybe for higher protein and to make it a light lunch in lieu of a side, add sardines or anchovies. All still Mediterranean 🙂

    Keep the Mediterranean dishes coming! We are obsessed with the Mediterranean diet here.

  103. I make something like this all the time using the Israel (pearl style) couscous. It's actually my son's favorite dish. I'll have to try this with quinoa.

    Also really good to add a little fresh parsley or mint to this. Goes great with the Mediterranean flavors.

  104. This is my absolute favourite way of eating quinoa! I don't use cucumber because I really don't like it… But other than that, if this is all I have for the rest of my life, I wouldn't have a problem with it.

    • I don't care for cucumber, either. I substitute diced baby zucchini!

    • Have you ever tried English Cucumber? They are usually packaged singly in a plastic sleeve in my grocery. Very different taste than a standard cucumber. No slime, no discernable seeds, no bitterness.

    • I sub the cucumber for a green pepper and it is SO GOOD!
      I also put the tiniest splash of greek vinaigrette dressing on the quinoa before I toss it. This is recipe is a total 10!

  105. If only I could eat quinoa! I could use rice or couscous! Thanks Gina!

  106. pity i am not able to do a quinoa properly !! I do not why i always keep procedure but it's always burn in the end 🙁 maybe wrong quinoa haha

    http://franchemeetsfashion.blogspot.cz/

    • It should simmer on the lowest heat, maybe your flame is too high.

    • I had a hard time with quinoa too, then I used thekitchn.com's (Google "how to cook quinoa" and look for their link) cooking guide for quinoa and I have not burned it once!

      I also notoriously burn rice. Every time.

    • I like to cook quinoa in my rice cooker and it comes out great. I have a hard time with the stove too! I'm just learning how to cook. This recipe looks fantastic

    • Put more (cover the quinoa like 1" or more with water) water in it and when it is done you just put it thru a sieve and rinse it off with cool water. No sticking and you don't even need to wait until it cools off. Oh, I just don't know if you throw away nutrients by washing it. BUT, definitely no burning 🙂

    • I never thought to use the rice cooker w/ quinoa. Do you put the same amount of water in as you would do with rice?

    • I put the same amount. 1 to 2. And it's perfect in the rice cooker!

    • Try a heat diffuser under the pan on your stove. Many ranges are just too hot and will not achieve a real simmer.

    • Do it in the microwave.

    • Check other burners on your stove. One of my front burners seems to burn much hotter than the other one.

    • Try a rice cooker instead of a pan on the stove. Less chance of burning or scorching

    • Fill a medium pot with water, add quinoa and salt to taste and bring to a boil. When the water boils, reduce heat to low and cover; simmer covered 15 minutes. Remove from heat and keep covered an additional 5 minutes without lifting the lid; then fluff with a fork and set aside in a large mixing bowl to cool.

    • To one cup rinsed quinoa add 1 1/2 cup water. Salt and add teaspoon oil. Bring it to a boil.
      Boil on low for 5 minutes, covered. Stir and remove from heat. Let sit until cooled. Use in any recipe.