Berry Pecan Quinoa Salad with Homemade Berry Vinaigrette

As summer rolls around I can’t help but buy berries every time I go to the store! They’re sweet & delicious and can be enjoyed in every way imaginable. I love piling them on top of pancakes or granola, blending them into smoothies, eating them on their own, or using them in salads. Today I thought I’d share one of my current favorites, this berry pecan quinoa salad. It’s light, bright and bursting with berries!

Berry Pecan Quinoa Salad

Confession: I’ve never been one to add berries to my salads until recently. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE fruit salad, but never really understood why people would load up their greens with them. That’s all changed. Ever since I started making my own berry vinaigrette, I totally get it! I just needed to use the right dressing. Duh.

Berry Pecan Quinoa Salad

For this salad I like to use a spring mix as the base. It’s something you can find at most grocery stores in a pre-packaged mix. Then I like to add a bit of cold quinoa to it (for protein) as well as toasted pecans. Make sure to use toasted nuts… it will make a world of difference both texture-wise & taste-wise. P.S. you can do this by tossing raw pecans into a dry skillet set over medium heat. Shake every few minutes or so and when they start to become fragrant you know they’re done 🙂

Berry Pecan Quinoa Salad

Then top with lots of fresh blueberries, raspberries and sliced strawberries. Whip up a batch of my homemade berry vinaigrette and you’re good to go! I added a sprinkle of poppy seeds into my dressing this time around, but that’s totally optional… it’ll taste great either way.

Berry Pecan Quinoa Salad

If you wanted a more filling salad, top with slices of chicken or add a bit of bacon or bleu cheese to it! You’ll be surprised by how easy and delicious this salad is… that’s why it’s one of my go-to summer side dishes! Enjoy!

Berry Pecan Quinoa Salad

Berry Pecan Quinoa Salad Recipe

Nothing says summer quite like a fresh, crisp, berry-topped salad! This berry pecan quinoa salad with homemade berry vinaigrette is perfect for lunch, dinner or to take to BBQs!
0 from 0 votes
Pin Rate
Course: Salad
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 mins
Total Time: 5 mins
Servings: 2 servings
Calories: 491kcal
Print Recipe

Ingredients

For the Salad
  • 3 cup spring green mix
  • 1/3 cup blueberries
  • 1/3 cup raspberries
  • 1/2 cup strawberries - sliced
  • 1/3 cup toasted pecans
  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa - cooled
Additions
  • cooked chicken - chopped
  • bacon crumbles
  • bleu cheese crumbles
For the Dressing
  • 1/2 cup raspberries
  • 2 medium strawberries - sliced
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar - OR balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp shallot - minced
  • pinch salt
  • pinch pepper
  • 1/2 tsp poppy seeds - optional

Instructions

  • Add the greens to a large plate or medium size bowl. Top with fruit, pecans and quinoa.
  • To make the dressing, in a food processor combine all of the ingredients except for the poppy seeds. Puree until smooth. If you want an extra creamy dressing, pour through a mesh sieve to remove the seeds. Stir in poppy seeds if desired, toss with salad, a little bit at a time (this recipe makes a generous amount of dressing, store the leftover dressing in the refrigerator for up to 3 days).

Nutrition

Serving: 2g | Calories: 491kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 41g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Sodium: 26mg | Potassium: 489mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 6141IU | Vitamin C: 47mg | Calcium: 66mg | Iron: 2mg