Gingered Lentil Quinoa Salad


Gingered Lentil Quinoa Salad

Gingered Lentil Quinoa Salad is a healthy, tasty salad of lentils, quinoa and asparagus flavored with freshly grated ginger, olive oil and pomegranate red wine vinegar. Toasted pine nuts are sprinkled on top of the finished salad. The original recipe called for mint leaves. I like mint but I also like basil, both of which are growing on our deck. I decided to divide the recipe in half and to add mint leaves to one half and basil leaves to the other half to see which one I liked best. It turns out that I happen to like both mint and basil versions of this fresh salad recipe! So follow your gut on this one – pun intended!

I would recommend using the blender to prepare this salad dressing to finely distribute the grated ginger – a wire whisk just doesn’t do this very well. Another recommendation is to use any nuts you would like in this recipe as pine nuts, which are specified, have become expensive. Walnuts would probably add some great flavor as well as crunchiness.

Gingered Lentil Quinoa Salad Recipe

Gingered Lentil Quinoa Salad
Serves 8
A tasty, healthy salad of lentils, quinoa, and asparagus flavored with ginger, olive oil and pomegranate red wine vinegar.
Write a review
Save Recipe
  1. 1 quart water
  2. 3/4 cup dried green lentils, rinsed
  3. 1/2 cup dried quinoa
  4. 4 ounces fresh asparagus tips cut into 1-inch pieces
  5. 1/2 cup olive oil
  6. 1/4 cup pomegranate red wine vinegar
  7. 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
  8. 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  9. 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  10. 1/4 teaspoon dried pepper flakes
  11. 1 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
  12. 2 ounces pine nuts, toasted
  13. 6 cups mixed salad greens
  1. Bring water to a boil over high heat in a medium saucepan. Add lentils, reduce heat, cover and simmer 17 minutes.
  2. Add quinoa, cover and cook 7 minutes.
  3. Add asparagus and cook 2 minutes or until asparagus is tender crisp.
  4. Drain and run under cold water to cool.
  5. Shake off excess water.
  6. Meanwhile, combine oil, vinegar, ginger, salt, black pepper and pepper flakes in a medium bowl.
  7. Add the lentil mixture, mint and pine nuts to the oil mixture and toss, until well coated.
  8. Serve over salad greens.
  1. Chopped fresh basil leaves works well in this salad in place of the mint leaves for a different twist on the original!
Adapted from Pompeian
Adapted from Pompeian

Exquisite Ginger

Ginger is one of my favorite spices! Some people call it gingerroot. When fresh it’s gnarly so it needs to be peeled before using. (Ginger is technically a rhizome of the ginger plant.) Ginger is aromatic, pungent and sweet with a touch of musty/earthy undertones. Ginger is considered by many to be an aid to digestion – remember drinking a gingerale when your tummy was upset? Our fall-winter holiday season wouldn’t be the same without gingerbread and the many items that ginger lends its flavor to, such as pumpkin pie.

For those over 60 with a diminished sense of taste, spices are important to add to food to give it more taste. Spices are what I refer to as “flavor intensifiers” and add another layer of flavor to our food.

A Little About Lentils

Lentils are legumes which are related to beans and peanuts. They are technically seeds that are harvested from pods. Lentils can add a great deal of color to a dish as they come in a variety of colors – tan, green, red, orange, golden and black. Unlike dried beans, lentils do not require pre-soaking overnight before cooking. Be sure to rinse them and inspect them for any debris that may have gotten mixed in with the lentils. Lentils have the capability of absorbing flavors with which they are combined. Used all over the world, lentils are high in fiber, iron and Vitamin B12 and may help lower cholesterol. Lentils are often used as meat substitutes due to their protein content.

Versatile Quinoa

Quinoa is a grain grown for its edible seeds. Containing essential amino acids, quinoa also is high in fiber, calcium, phosphorus, iron and B vitamins. Quinoa is gluten-free and may be cooked and used just like rice. Quinoa has a low glycemic index and contains minerals and antioxidants. Quinoa imparts a mild, nutty flavor to dishes in which it is an ingredient.

Parting Comments

What a great salad with so many healthy ingredients!

Add your own individual touch to this salad by including your favorite ingredients to the mix!

Remember to Savor the Flavor!


*If you’d like to receive new Silver Foodie posts automatically, please enter your e-mail address in the space under “Silver Foodie Updates” on the right side bar, then click “Sign up.” Thank you!

For a list of link parties in which I participate weekly, please click on “Link Parties” on the header menu bar or scroll down the right sidebar.


Black Bean Quinoa Veggie Burgers


Black Bean Quinoa Veggie Burgers

Black Bean Quinoa Veggie Burgers are made from a mixture of cooked quinoa, black beans, salsa, crushed tortilla chips and taco seasoning. Black Bean Quinoa Veggie Burgers are a great choice for Meatless Mondays or anytime you want a meatless meal. “Meatless Mondays” is a movement in the USA aimed at reducing our carbon footprint while at the same time improving our health status.

I’m always really surprised when I go to a “big box” store such as Costco’s or Sam’s Club and look at the prices for veggie burgers. Making your own veggie burgers is not difficult and you have the added advantage of knowing exactly what ingredients go into them while you’re saving money by making them at home.

Many people save money by adding meatless meals to their weekly menus. Meatless meals are built around vegetables, beans, grains and nuts instead of meat (which tends to be more expensive).  Meatless meals offer health benefits. There is no cholesterol in plant-based foods, in fact, the soluble fiber in beans and lentils helps reduce cholesterol.   Beans and vegetables are full of fiber which makes one feel “full” or satiated, promotes digestion and prevents constipation.  Less meat in the diet may reduce the risk of cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes and obesity.

In other parts of the world meatless meals are commonly on the daily menu. In Latin America beans are often consumed with rice and/or tortillas.  In the Middle East bulgur wheat may be combined with chickpeas, falafel (made of chickpeas) may be eaten with pita bread, and hummus (also made of chickpeas) is popular. In Asian countries soy is combined with rice, barley, wheat or millet.  These cuisines offer many delicious meatless dishes.

Millions of people around the globe follow a vegetarian diet, either because meat is scarce or for religious, philosophical and/or health reasons. Others just enjoy an occasional vegetarian meal and/or like to save some money by skipping meat once or several times a week.

The Recipe for Black Bean Quinoa Veggie Burgers

Black Bean Quinoa Veggie Burgers
A meatless burger made from black beans, cooked quinoa, salsa, crushed tortilla chips and taco seasoning.
Write a review
Save Recipe
  1. 2/3 cup water
  2. 1/3 cup quinoa, rinsed
  3. 1 can (15 oz.) black beans, rinsed & drained
  4. 1 cup salsa
  5. 1 cup crushed tortilla chips
  6. 2 tablespoons taco seasoning
  1. In a small saucepan, bring water to a boil. Add quinoa; reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 12-15 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat; fluff with a fork.
  2. In a large bowl, mash black beans. Add salsa, crushed tortilla chips, taco seasoning and cooked quinoa; mix well.
  3. Shape the mixture into eight 1/4" thick patties.
  4. Grill, covered, over medium heat 5-6 minutes on each side or until heated through.
  5. To bake veggie burgers, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place burgers on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake 25-30 minutes or until heated through, turning once.

Additional Information

When I make Black Bean Quinoa Veggie Burgers I place the black beans in a mini food processor and chop them coarsely. I use baked tortilla chips called Scoops and I crush them between sheets of wax paper by rolling over them with a rolling pin. The chips are not difficult to crush – you could also just use your hands to do this.

This recipe makes 8 veggie burgers. I use an ice cream scoop to make equal portions, then flatten them with the palm of my hand.

The Black Bean Quinoa Veggie Burgers freeze well. I wrap them in wax paper then place them in a freezer zip-lock bag. I have a grill pan to cook the veggie burgers on top of the stove – that way I get the grill marks without firing up the grill outside!

My favorite way to serve Black Bean Quinoa Veggie Burgers is to place them on a hamburger bun with a slice of tomato and some lettuce. I sometimes melt a slice of cheese on them but they are really tasty even without the cheese. Sweet potato fries are the perfect side to go with Black Bean Quinoa Veggie Burgers, too.

If you enjoy an occasional vegetarian entrée, you might also like an earlier Silver Foodie post in which there are two vegetarian recipes – Black Bean Burrito Bake and Bulgur Veggie Burgers with Lime Mayonnaise. Click here if you would like to see these recipes. You may also like Sweet Potato Black Bean Quesadillas.

Remember to Savor the Flavor!


*If you’d like to receive new Silver Foodie posts automatically, please enter your e-mail address under “Silver Foodie Updates” on the right sidebar, then click on “Sign up.”  Thank you!

For a list of link parties in which I participate weekly, click on “Link Parties” on the header menu bar.


Meatless Meals 1/ Love Those Veggies!

There is a movement in this country that I’m sure you’ve heard about called “Meatless Mondays.”  The idea is to consume one or two meatless meals on Mondays to reduce the carbon footprint while at the same time improving one’s health status.  You may also have heard of the Flexitarian Diet … Continue reading →