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Quinoa and Pomegranate Salad with Asparagus and Walnuts

Makes 8 servings


  • 2/3 cup quinoa (makes about 2 cups cooked)
  • 2/3 lb asparagus
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1 cup chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped mint leaves
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped dill
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro, optional
  • 1/2 cup chopped scallions, green part only, optional
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice from Meyer lemons* (or 1/4 cup lemon plus 1/4 cup orange juice)
  • 1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
  • Black pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup pomegranate seeds, divided (use 1 large pomegranate)


  1. Cook quinoa according to package directions. Drain and cool.
  2. Steam whole asparagus for 3 minutes or until bright green. Remove from pan immediately, drain, and let rest on plate with ice cubes. Slice diagonally into 1/4-inch pieces.
  3. In large bowl, combine quinoa, asparagus, carrots, parsley, mint, dill, walnuts and cilantro and scallions, if using.
  4. Give walnuts a toasty taste by placing them in a small dry skillet over medium-high heat and stirring frequently for 2-3 minutes until lightly browned. Immediately transfer to a small dish and cool before using.
  5. In a separate bowl mix olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Toss with quinoa mixture and then add 3/4 cup pomegranate seeds.
  6. Serve as is for buffet or spoon individual servings over 1 cup baby lettuce or mixed greens. Garnish with remaining pomegranate seeds.

Per serving: 145 calories, 7 g total fat (1 g saturated fat), 20 g carbohydrate, 4 g protein**, 3 g dietary fiber, 165 mg sodium.
*Meyer lemons lend a great citrusy flavor that combines well with the pomegranate seeds.

**For a little extra protein: Add half cup cooked cannellini beans to each serving of lettuce and top with quinoa combination.

Recipe from: AICR (American Institute for Cancer Research)  May, 2013