These Mexican Quinoa Salad Bowls are so easy to make! They’re a great whole food plant based meal prep lunch option but can also be used as a side salad or a taco filling!
Whether you work from home or go into the office everyday, a healthy lunch is important! Meal prep is the main thing that keeps me on track eating healthy during a busy day. I like to prepare these Mexican Quinoa Salad Bowls on Sunday so that I can enjoy them all week long without doing any work!
I’ve been trying to eat more whole foods plant based lately and I’m excited that is recipe is made with all whole food ingredients and the dressing doesn’t have any oil in it! This Mexican Quinoa Salad is full of protein and veggies, plus lots of flavor!
MEXICAN QUINOA SALAD INGREDIENTS
I always try to keep my recipes easy and simple but also full of flavor. This recipe only requires a few ingredients but it’s still so delicious!
- Quinoa – I like to use quinoa because it’s a healthy whole grain with lots of protein. You could use any grain you like, including: brown rice, white rice, farro, bulgar or millet.
- Black Beans – I love black beans and use them often in my recipes. Any other bean would be a great replacement though.
- Tomato Salad – I made a simple tomato salad with ingredients I had on hand: cherry tomatoes, onion, jalapeño, green pepper, cilantro and a little bit of salt and lime juice. It’s easy to make and really highlights the fresh vegetable flavors. Feel free to add other vegetables you like!
- Tahini Dressing – Tahini is a great substitute for olive oil in salad dressings. It’s creamy, mild in flavor and works for lots of different cuisines. For these Mexican Quinoa Salad Bowls I mixed tahini with some lemon juice, cumin, water and salt.
WHOLE FOODS PLANT BASED MEAL PREP
Time after time spending about 20-30 minutes prepping my lunch on the weekends really saves me from eating junk during the week. Here are a few tips to coming up with easy and delicious meal prep lunches that are also super healthy:
- Pick a grain – Whole grains are good for you and help keep you feeling full longer. When you eat a well balanced healthy diet you don’t have to be afraid of carbs at all! Just make sure to pick a grain that has lots of health benefits. A few I use often are: quinoa, brown rice, millet, farro, and bulgar.
- Pick a plant based protein – Whole grains will help keep you full but an extra protein source is also important. I love using canned beans because they’re really easy and require no extra prep time. You could also use tofu or tempeh but they usually require a little bit of preperation.
- Use lots of vegetables – Vegetables are an important thing to include in all of your meals. For these quinoa bowls I chose to make a fresh vegetable salad but you could also use cooked vegetables depending on what kind of meal you are making.
- Oil and sugar free dressing – I’m very guilty of making oil based salad dressings but I’m trying to move away from that and tahini is a great alternative. Tahini is smooth and creamy and creates a delicious salad dressing when mixed with a few other ingredients. You could also use a different nut butter such as: peanut butter, almond butter, cashew butter or sunbutter.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- How long will these keep in the refrigerator? I keep them for about 4 days max. You might be able to stretch it to 5 if the ingredients still look and smell good to you.
- Can I just mix everything together instead of using it as meal prep? Yes! You can for sure just mix everything together in a big bowl and serve as a side salad.
- Can I use a different dressing? Of course, feel free to substitute any of the ingredients you don’t have on hand or don’t like with ones that you do like.
- Why aren’t the beans or quinoa seasoned at all? I like to keep my meal prep as simple as possible and feel that the dressing does a good enough job seasoning all the ingredients.
- What can I serve these with? I like to enjoy mine with a fresh corn tortilla or a handful of corn chips.
LOOKING FOR MORE VEGAN MEAL PREP RECIPES?Print
These Mexican Quinoa Salad Bowls are simple, easy and full of flavor. They’re perfect for a healthy plant based meal prep lunch.
- 1 cup dried quinoa
- 2 cups cooked black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
- 1 large green pepper, diced
- 1/2 onion, diced
- Diced jalapeno, to taste
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- Juice of 1/2 lime
Cumin Lime Tahini Dressing
- 1/3 cup tahini
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons water, or more or less depending on the consistency of your tahini
- Add the quinoa to a medium sized pot and cover with two cups of water. Place a lid on and bring to a simmer, turn down and cook until all the water has cooked out and quinoa is cooked through. Set aside and let cool for a few minutes.
- To a medium sized bowl, add the tomatoes, onion, green pepper, jalapeño, cilantro, lime juice and salt, to taste. Mix until combined.
- Add all dressing ingredients to a bowl and mix until a creamy sauce is formed. You may have to add more or less water depending on the consistency of your tahini.
- Assemble your meal prep bowls. Set up four equal sized containers and in each one put an equal amount of each of the ingredients. It will be about 3/4 cup quinoa, 1/2 cup black beans and 1/4 of the tomato salad. Portion out the dressing into small containers and store everything in the refrigerator until ready to eat.
If you don’t have containers for the dressing you can just add it straight into your bowls right before eating or in the morning when packing your lunch.