Summer, and salad. They’re just a match made in hot, lazy, summertime heaven.
Well, we’re back from California, and one thing is for sure: After five weeks of traveling, I am so ready to dive back in the kitchen and create some great meals for our family!!
Except yes–it’s hot.
And a bit sticky–at least here on the island.
And let’s face it, no one feels like standing over a steamy stove when it’s hot and sticky. No, when it’s hot and sticky you just want to jump in the ocean.
(But the ocean is even so warm this summer that Luke is complaining about sweating while he is surfing. hahahaha.)
Back to summer and salad:
I don’t know about you, but I tend to lose my appetite in the heat. I snack my way through the day on things like watermelon and mangoes and then suddenly I look at the clock and it is 6:00 and I’m like, “Ummm….Popsicles for dinner?”
(Little Levi is ALL IN.)
But my teenagers? They are like no way.
They want all of the food. All of the time.
So, my solution is to create some delicious salads that are totally refreshing, yet substantial enough to call a meal. Complete with all of the food groups: Protein, carbs, veggies, and some healthy fats. I serve them with some crusty bread, or just chips and salsa (it’s summertime!)
Then let them eat ice cream.
This salad is one of our favorites. Quinoa is packed with protein, but I still added grilled chicken breast to this one. ^ Because there are a lot of muscles being built in this house right now.
Lime and olive oil, paired with black beans with the crunch of corn and kale…Mmm. I love a bit of garlic, and a good dash of salt and pepper…The flavors are just perfectly summer.
Print this baby out, and make it tonight!
- (I double this for our family)
- 3 cups cooked quinoa (1½ cups uncooked)
- 1 cup fresh kale, torn into bite-size pieces
- 1 cup corn, frozen, or fresh
- 1 cup black beans, drained and rinsed
- (optional) 1-2 cooked chicken breasts, diced.
- (optional) ½ cup cheddar cheese (or your choice) cut into small cubes or shredded.
- 2 medium tomatoes, chopped.
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil (or according to taste--add a little at a time and check texture and flavor)
- 2 T. cup lime or lemon juice
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp salt (or to taste--usually takes a bit more for mine.)
- ½ tsp. pepper (or to taste--)
- *optional, add chopped veggies like onion, red or green pepper.
- Cook quinoa according to package directions (I sometimes cook it in chicken or veggie broth)
- Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, combining well.
- Add the salt, pepper, and olive oil according to taste. I like a lot of lime juice so I add a bit extra of that as well.
Side note: I always make extra so we can have it for lunch the next day! Quinoa seems to soak up the flavors really nicely. (But from experience: I toss anything leftover on day three. Quinoa has an official 3 day limit. :))
Let me know if you try it! And just a warning, I might be coming back with a few more salads this summer!
(Even if I’m mostly eating these all day.)
*remember to PIN to save for later, and “share” so your friends can see it too! 🙂
What do YOU crave most in the summer? Or if it isn’t summer where you are–(hello Down Under, :)) What are you craving these days!?