Welcome, foodies! Today, we're going to talk about one of the most delicious and versatile superfoods out there - quinoa. This tiny seed has been gaining popularity for a while now, and for a good reason. Not only is it gluten-free and easy to digest, but it's also a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids that your body needs to function properly. And the best part? It's incredibly versatile and can be used in a wide variety of dishes, from breakfast bowls to desserts.
In this post, we'll focus on one of my all-time favorite ways to enjoy quinoa - in a vibrant, crunchy salad. This recipe is perfect for those looking for a quick, easy meal that's healthy and satisfying meal. Plus, it's great for meal prep, as you can make a big batch and enjoy it throughout the week.
This crunchy & zesty salad offers an array of both essential & nonessential amino acids while supporting gut health & detoxification through a variety of nutrient-dense, vibrant veggies & herbs.
Quinoa is a highly nutritious grain that is often considered a superfood due to its impressive nutritional profile. In terms of protein, quinoa is considered a complete protein source, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids. A 100-gram serving of quinoa provides about 4.4 grams of protein.
In terms of vitamins and minerals, quinoa is an excellent source of several key nutrients. For example, it is high in magnesium, with a 100-gram serving providing about 118 milligrams, which is roughly 30% of the recommended daily intake. Quinoa is also a good source of potassium, with a 100-gram serving providing about 318 milligrams.
Quinoa is also high in fiber, with a 100-gram serving providing about 2.8 grams of fiber. This makes it a great option for those looking to increase their fiber intake and improve their digestive health. The fiber found in quinoa may also help to regulate blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of heart disease.
Sweet potato is one of the most delicious and easiest root vegetables to add to any dish. They come in a variety of different colors, such as white, orange, and even purple, and are an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber.
For example, one cup of baked sweet potato provides around 213% of the daily value (DV) of Vitamin A, 44% of the DV of Vitamin C, 43% of the DV of Manganese, and 34% of the DV of Vitamin B6.
The orange and purple varieties of sweet potatoes are particularly rich in antioxidants that can help to fight free radicals.
Rich in soluble and insoluble fiber, sweet potatoes may help support a healthy gut microbiome and overall digestive health since these fibers are fermented by bacteria in the gut, producing short-chain fatty acids (SCFA) that provide fuel for the intestinal epithelial cells.
Mint is not only a flavorful herb, but it also provides a number of nutritional benefits. For example, this vibrant plant contains
Vitamin A: Mint is an excellent source of vitamin A, which is important for eye health, the immune system, and skin health.
Antioxidants: Mint is rich in antioxidants, which help to protect the body against damage from harmful free radicals and may reduce the risk of certain diseases.
Minerals: Mint is also a good source of minerals such as magnesium, potassium, and iron.
- Phytochemicals: Certain compounds in mint may assist with digestive health by reducing bloating, nausea, and stomach cramps.
Garlic is a mighty plant with potent antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial properties and has been used medicinally since ancient times.
The compounds found in garlic may even have preventive effects on diseases like cancer while offering powerful anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and lipid-lowering properties. 
A systematic review and meta-analysis of 12 randomized controlled trials examined the effect of garlic on antioxidant status. Overall, researchers found that garlic significantly increased total antioxidant capacity and levels of superoxide dismutase, a powerful antioxidant enzyme. Malondialdehyde levels were significantly decreased after garlic supplementation, which indicates reduced oxidative stress. 
Another meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials examined the effects of garlic supplementation on markers of cardiovascular health and immune function. Researchers found that garlic may significantly reduce both systolic and diastolic blood pressure and significantly lower LDL cholesterol levels (the “bad” cholesterol). Lastly, it was concluded that garlic could significantly reduce the number, duration, and severity of upper respiratory tract infections. 
MAKES 3 SERVINGS
1 cup uncooked quinoa
2lb sweet potatoes
3 carrots, finely grated
4 spring onions, finely sliced
1/2 cup toasted sunflower seeds
3 handfuls baby spinach, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
2 large handfuls cilantro, chopped
- 1 large handful mint leaves, chopped
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2/3 cup olive oil
3 pinches of Himalayan salt
- Stevia to sweeten OR 1-2 spoons raw honey
Preheat an oven to 375 F.
Chop the sweet potatoes into small cubes and drizzle with avocado/coconut oil on a baking tray.
Bake for 1 hour or until sweet potatoes are soft and a bit crispy/caramelized.
While the potatoes are in the oven, start on the quinoa.
Rinse the quinoa well in a sieve under some running water.
Place it in a pot with 1 and 3/4 cup water.
- Cover, bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for about 12-15 minutes until all the water has been absorbed and the quinoa is fluffy.
Let the quinoa and cooked sweet potatoes cool down before adding them together and tossing in all of the freshly chopped ingredients and your desired amount of dressing (you may have some dressing left over, which you can store in the fridge for future salads for up to 4 days)
- Add Himalayan salt to taste and enjoy!
Note: This article is for informational purposes only and not intended for use as medical advice. Always consult your healthcare provider before starting any dietary supplement.