To accompany my quintessential summer meal of grilled steak with caprese salsa and grilled corn salad last week on vacation, I had planned to also make guacamole as an appetizer. To me, you can’t get more relaxed than guacamole and chips with some cold bevies outside on the deck. Unfortunately, after visiting two different markets I couldn’t find any ripe avocados, so we had to settle for premade guac, which definitely wasn’t as good as the real stuff. Though the dinner as a whole was delicious, I’ve been craving guacamole, since my fix was never really satisfied.
Enter this recipe for Guacamole Quinoa. While I wish it was acceptable to eat a big bowl of homemade guac and chips for lunch everyday (though I have done this before), I know it probably isn’t the most practical or healthy option. So to save myself from potential food shaming, I turned your typical guacamole into a salad with quinoa and black beans. The guacamole acts like your sauce or dressing, and the tomatoes and black beans help round out the dish into a healthy meal.
This salad would be a great weeknight dinner for hot summer nights, side dish for backyard BBQs, or take-to-work lunch as this makes great leftovers! Now if only it was acceptable to pack an ice cold Corona in my lunchbox…
Guacamole Quinoa Salad
1 cup dry quinoa
2 avocados, pitted, skinned and diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 small yellow onion, finely diced
2 tbsp plus 2 tbsp (divided) fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
1 lime, juiced
1 pint grape tomatoes, quartered
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
pinch of salt
1. Combine 1 cup quinoa with 2 cups water in a pot. Bring to a boil then simmer on low for 10-15 minutes until quinoa is cooked and tender. Fluff with a fork and set aside.
2. In a large bowl, combine diced avocados, garlic, onion, 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro and the juice of 1 lime. Mash with a fork as you would guacamole to desired consistency. I like mine on the chunkier side.
3. Add tomatoes, black beans, remaining 2 tbsp cilantro, and cooked quinoa to the bowl with the guacamole. Stir to combine and season with a big pinch of salt. Enjoy cold, at room temperature, or as leftovers!