Quinoa Taco Salad

I think there are two types of people who will read this blog post. Person one is super excited or at least interested at the mention of quinoa in a taco salad.  Person two is skeptical. Quinoa seems like one of those weird, trendy health foods that probably tastes bad right? Wrong. Although many of us have probably had a poorly cooked bowl of quinoa, I can promise you that when done well, this grain is tender and satisfying. Add some zesty seasonings, a little chicken broth, and you have a hearty healthy protein. This quinoa taco salad was inspired by America’s Test Kitchen.

If I still haven’t convinced you quinoa is amazing, it’s easy to substitute ground beef. (We recommend the grass-fed ground beef from Cameron Mills that we carry in our farm stand!) Just fry the beef up on top of the sauce (when you would add the toasted quinoa in the recipe), and skip the chicken stock/cooking quinoa part. Happy cooking!

-Casey Perkins

Quinoa Taco Salad

Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Course: Salad
Keyword: taco salad
Servings: 6 people


For the Quinoa

  • 6 oz quinoa
  • 3 Tbsp canola oil
  • 3 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 medium onions diced
  • 1 Tbsp cumin
  • 3 Tbsp chili's in adobo sauce minced
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1⅓ cups chicken broth

For Salad

  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 lb salad mix
  • 1-2 medium tomatoes chopped
  • 1 bell pepper (and/or other summer veggies) chopped
  • 2 limes juiced
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese grated
  • 1 bunch cilantro chopped
  • 3 scallions chopped
  • tortilla chips


For the Quinoa

  • Toast the quinoa over medium heat until it starts to brown and pop, around 5-6 minutes. Set aside.
  • Saute onions with a dash of salt in oil over medium heat until soft and beginning to brown, 8-10 minutes.
  • Add tomato paste, cumin, chilis, and soy sauce. Cook 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
  • Use chicken stock to deglaze pan. Add quinoa, cover, and cook for 18-20 minutes or until soft. Fluff, and let cool.

For the Salad

  • Mix the sour cream and lime juice together. Place the salad greens in a large bowl. Top with quinoa, tomatoes, and pepper. Toss with sour cream and lime mixture. Sprinkle cheddar, cilantro and scallions over top. Serve with tortilla chips crumbled over the top. Enjoy!


Alternatively, set all the toppings in individual bowls and create a taco salad toppings bar! 

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