Editor’s Note: Maria Lichty, creator of the Two Peas and Their Pod culinary blog, has partnered with Thermador to contribute blog posts on an ongoing basis. Lichty, based out of Salt Lake City, recently finished a complete kitchen remodel, and replaced her former appliances with Thermador.


The time for summer BBQs, picnics and pool parties is here. If you’re looking for a new side dish to take to your summer parties, try this quinoa salad. Quinoa (pronounced “Keen-wah”) is an edible seed that is commonly considered a whole grain because it can be substituted for nearly any grain in cooking. Quinoa is a good source of protein, fiber, iron, magnesium and potassium. It is also gluten free. Quinoa is fluffy with a slightly crunchy texture and nutty flavor. Quinoa can be found in most grocery stores and health food stores.

I love this quinoa salad because it’s easy to make and very versatile. I added black beans, garbanzo beans, tomatoes, squash, garlic and freshly chopped basil to the quinoa. Feel free to use whatever vegetables or beans you have on hand. I like to drizzle a little olive oil and balsamic dressing over the salad right before serving.

This quinoa salad is a great summer dish. If you are looking for a new recipe to try for Memorial Day, give this quinoa salad a try.

Quinoa Salad

1 ½ cups quinoa
3 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1 cup rinsed black beans
1 cup rinsed garbanzo beans
2 T balsamic vinegar
1 cup chopped tomatoes
1 cup chopped yellow squash or zucchini squash
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil
Salt and pepper, to taste
Olive oil and balsamic vinegar-for drizzling over the salad

1. Rinse quinoa thoroughly for 3-4 minutes.
2. Bring broth to a boil.  Add quinoa and reduce to a simmer.  Cook covered for 15-20 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
3. In a separate bowl, toss beans, vinegar, tomatoes, squash, garlic, and basil together.
4. When quinoa is cool, combine quinoa, beans, and vegetables in a large bowl. Toss well and season with salt and pepper.
5. Drizzle with olive and balsamic dressing, if desired. Serve at room temperature.