Tomato Quinoa Salad with Basil Vinaigrette

by Jenna Garcia

Summer is winding down and autumn is in the air, which means it is time to savor the last of summer’s harvest. And what is more delectable than fresh-from-the-garden tomatoes? Juicy, flavorful and brightly colored, fresh summer tomatoes are the stuff of dreams.

This week’s post and the next two are dedicated to recipes highlighting the mighty tomato. For the freshest, juiciest tomatoes, we recommend buying organic heirloom tomatoes from a local farm or farmers market. Or, better yet, harvest your own or beg some off of your green-thumbed friend or neighbor. :)

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Today, I’m sharing my recipe for Tomato Quinoa Salad with Basil Vinaigrette. This salad is easy to make and serves as a great side dish or as the main entree! The homemade basil vinaigrette pairs perfectly with the juicy tomatoes, red onions and fennel for a filling and delicious salad.

Did I mention that this recipe is naturally gluten-free, dairy-free and vegan? Yep, sure is! (Despite this, I can guarantee that it certainly isn’t flavor-free…)

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Tomato Quinoa Salad with Basil Vinaigrette

Serves 8 as side dish, 4 as main entree

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 3-4 medium to large sized tomatoes, sliced*
  • ¼ medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • ½ small bulb of fennel, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup basil vinaigrette + more for serving (recipe below)
  • Mixed greens

* You can substitute cherry tomatoes, just slice in halves.

Instructions:

  1. Prepare quinoa according to instructions. (If quinoa package does not say “pre-rinsed,” be sure to rinse it first.) Once cooked, allow to cool then add to salad bowl.
  2. Slice tomatoes, red onion and fennel. Add to the quinoa.
  3. Pour basil vinaigrette over the quinoa and vegetables and toss to combine. (You may want to also add some salt, but be sure to taste first.)
  4. Serve over a bed of mixed greens with extra vinaigrette on top. Bon appetit!

Basil Vinaigrette

Store extra vinaigrette in a sealed container in the fridge and be sure to stir or shake before using.

Ingredients:

  • 20-25 basil leaves
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 1 cup EVOO
  • ⅓ cup white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 shallot
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until completely emulsified.
  2. Add salt and pepper to taste and blend again.

Here at Foodie by Trende, we love tomatoes! Check out our recipe videos for Burst Tomato Pasta and Gazpacho. (The Gazpacho was just posted today!)

Did you try this recipe? Tell us what you thought on our Facebook page!

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Jenna Garcia

In addition to Trendeing, Jenna is a program director at a non-profit that works to end the cycle of homelessness and trauma for adults and children. She lives in Sonoma County with her husband and Border Collie and is passionate about helping others find their dignity and voice and promoting open dialog about issues facing our world today.