Quinoa, an ancient grain that’s actually an edible seed related to beets and spinach, makes a fantastic base for a salad.

Makes 8 servings
Cooking time: N/A


  • 1 cup (250 mL) quinoa
  • 1 ripe mango, peeled and diced
  • 1 small red or yellow pepper, seeded and diced
  • 2 cups (500 mL) (packed) baby spinach, torn or sliced
  • 1 cup (250 mL) black beans, (or half 19 oz./540 mL can) rinsed and drained
  • ¼ English cucumber, chopped
  • 2-3 green onions, chopped, or ¼ cup (60 mL) chopped red onion


  • 3 tbsp (45 mL) canola oil
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) white wine or white balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) honey
  • ½ tsp (2 mL) curry powder or paste
  • ¼ tsp (1 mL) cumin


  1. Rinse quinoa well under cool water in fine sieve or in several changes of water. Drain well.
  2. In large pot of boiling salted water set over medium heat, cook quinoa until tender but still firm to bite, about 15 minutes. It’s done when germ separates, making it look like a curly Q.
  3. Drain well and return quinoa to pot off heat. Cover with tea towel and replace lid, allowing it to steam and producing fluffy quinoa as it cools.
  4. In large bowl, combine cooled quinoa, mango, pepper, spinach, black beans, cucumber and onions.
  5. To make dressing, combine canola oil, vinegar, honey, curry and cumin in jar or small bowl and shake or whisk to blend.
  6. Drizzle salad with dressing and toss until well coated.


Serving size
½ cup (125 mL) per serving

Recipe courtesy of canolainfo.org, featured in the Canadian Diabetes Association’s 2016 Healthy Living Calendar. To download the latest recipes, visit http://www.diabetes.ca/calendar.

Nutritional Information

Per Serving
Calories 160
Total Fat 6 g
Saturated Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Carbohydrates 23 g
Fibre 4 g
Protein 4 g
Sodium 15 mg
“Quinoa is a nutritious grain and is a source of fibre, which has many benefits including controlling blood sugar. Enjoy it in a salad, as a hot side dish, or added to soup.” – Anne McLaughlin, registered dietitian, Kentville, N.S.

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