Spring Quinoa Salad

Roasted asparagus and radishes are the star of this fresh and flavorful springtime quinoa salad. Perfect as a make-ahead lunch option or a potluck side dish. Vegan and gluten-free. 

I know I post a lot of salads, but I can’t help it that salads are my favorite thing to make. I probably should have named my blog Eating Big Salads instead of Eating Bird Food. Just kidding. Kind of. <– Just checked and it looks like the domain is still available. Should I buy it?

Fresh and Flavorful Spring Quinoa Salad

Anyhow, my latest salad obsession is here. It’s a quinoa salad loaded with all things spring — garlic, scallions, asparagus, parsley and the prettiest of radishes.

Easter Egg Rasdishes

Easter Egg Radishes. Aren’t they lovely?

For this salad I decided to roast the radishes and asparagus rather than keeping them raw. I love the crunch of raw vegetables, but roasting adds depth of flavor and a unique texture.

Roasted veggies are perfection hot from the oven, but they’re also lovely cooled and tossed into salads. Leftover roasted vegetables are a rarity around here because Isaac and I can easily eat a whole pan in one sitting. Whenever we have them for dinner I always try to make extra for salads. Sometimes it works, sometimes we just end up eating the extra. Oops!

Fresh and Flavorful Spring Quinoa Salad #vegan #glutenfree

Sorry, my love for roasting vegetables distracted me. Back to this salad and all of its springy goodness.

The raw garlic, scallions and parsley add a ton of favor so the dressing is very simple and light — just olive oil, lemon, maple syrup and sea salt. Last but not least, the chopped pistachios add a nutty crunch.

Spring quinoa salad with roasted asparagus and radishes

All stirred up with pops of pink, purple and green. So pretty!

Spring quinoa salad with roasted asparagus and radishes

So let’s talk about the base for the salad — quinoa!

As I’m sure you’ve noticed, I adore quinoa and use it ALL.THE.TIME. It’s quick to cook, gluten-free, a complete source of protein, full of fiber, high in magnesium and a good source of manganese, iron, copper, folate, zinc, phosphorous, riboflavin and other B vitamins.

From risotto to shrimp fried “rice” and salads to cereal and even cookies — quinoa has been the star of many recipes here on EBF.

Spring Quinoa Salad #glutenfree #vegan

In terms of quinoa brands, Ancient Harvest has always been my go-to. I got hooked on it when I started buying quinoa flakes and once I realized that their traditional quinoa is pre-rinsed I vowed to only buy Ancient Harvest moving forward. Rinsing a tiny little seed like quinoa without losing a ton of it down the drain is nearly impossible.

I’ve also noticed that some brands of quinoa include a lot of tiny pieces of debris (like sticks and dirt) and I’ve never seen that with Ancient Harvest products. Besides being forever grateful to Ancient Harvest for doing the dirty work of rinsing the quinoa, it makes me happy that their products are organic and sustainably sourced as well. They have a long-term (30+ year) relationship with a Bolivian farming community and are committed to ethical sourcing of their quinoa.

Given my love for quinoa and the Ancient Harvest brand, I was honored and excited when they asked me to be one of their 2015 blogger ambassadors. As part of this program, I’ll be sharing seasonal quinoa creations throughout the year, partnering with the Ancient Harvest on giveaways and working on a few other surprise projects.

I’m also really excited to be working alongside the other ambassadors — Monique of Ambitious Kitchen, Lee of Fit Foodie Finds, Erin of Naturally Ella, Cara of Fork and Beans and Alyssa of Simply Quinoa — such a great group of inspiring bloggers. Should be a ton of fun!

Spring Quinoa Salad #glutenfree #vegan

I’m starting things off with a bang as today’s spring quinoa salad is the first of my Ancient Harvest posts.

I know you’re going to love this salad! I’ve made it twice already and Isaac and I are hooked on it’s robust flavor. I seriously won’t be shocked if I end up making it again this week. We DO have asparagus in the fridge right now…

If you enjoy this quinoa salad, I have a roundup of healthy quinoa salad recipes.

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Spring Quinoa Salad

  • Author: Brittany Mullins
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 4-6


Roasted asparagus and radishes are the star of this fresh and flavorful springtime quinoa salad. Perfect as a make-ahead lunch option for a potluck side dish. Vegan and gluten-free.


  • 1 cup dry quinoa
  • 1 lb. fresh asparagus, trimmed and chopped into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 bunch of radishes, quartered
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil (for roasting)
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/3 cup parsley leaves, chopped
  • 5 scallions, chopped
  • 1/4 cup shelled pistachios, chopped


  1. Cook quinoa in water according to package directions. Remove from heat and let cool. This step can be done ahead of time.
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 400° F. Toss asparagus and radishes with olive oil and spread in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a baking stone. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the vegetables have reached your desired texture. If your asparagus spears are really thin, they may need to be taken out of the oven a bit earlier than the radishes.
  3. Once roasted, remove the veggies from the oven and allow to cool for 20 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile in a large salad bowl, whisk together lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, maple syrup, sea salt, and red pepper flakes.
  5. Add the asparagus, radishes, quinoa, parsley, scallions, and toss well to combine. Top with pistachios before serving.


Recipe inspired by Dr.Weil’s Quinoa Tabbouleh.


  • Serving Size: 1/6 of recipe
  • Calories: 263
  • Sugar: 5g
  • Fat: 14g
  • Carbohydrates: 29g
  • Fiber: 5g
  • Protein: 7g

If you end up making this recipe (or any others for that matter) be sure to come back and leave a comment or better yet, share a photo of social media and tag me (@eatingbirdfood or #eatingbirdfood) so that I see it. I love seeing and sharing your EBF creations. It literally makes my day! <3


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    1. Amy Stafford
      April 5, 2016 AT 5:11 pm

      Gorgeous salad and beautiful pictures. I have asparagus and radishes growing in the garden so I can’t wait to make this salad once I harvest!

    2. ashley
      April 5, 2016 AT 4:25 pm

      Don’t you just love when you find a new favorite salad recipe?? I can see why you want to keep making this one!!!

    3. Celebrating Sweets
      April 5, 2016 AT 1:09 pm

      Gorgeous photos! This salad is calling my name.

    4. Tiffany
      May 8, 2015 AT 5:42 pm

      Wow,looks yummy! What is the serving size for this recipe. It was cut I will be a chaperone for my son’s kindergarten field trip to the zoo May 20th. I will like to make this. I always take a salad, but this one is more filling.

    5. Catherine @ Rabbit Food For My Bunny Teeth
      April 28, 2015 AT 12:39 am

      This looks sooooo delicious! Beautiful photos!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        April 28, 2015 AT 3:06 pm

        Thanks friend! xoxo

    6. Deborah @ The Harvest Kitchen
      April 28, 2015 AT 12:13 am

      This salad looks incredible!!! Definitely making (I’ve been on a quinoa kick lately). Great combo of ingredients!

    7. Zack Sofia (@zarthewanderer)
      April 27, 2015 AT 3:57 am

      Hi Brittany, Great looking salad and yes you should buy Eating Big Salads! 😀

    8. Swarna
      April 23, 2015 AT 8:23 pm

      Hi Brittany,

      Great salad recipe! I made this for dinner tonight. Took a picture and tagged you on IG (amlu2707). I did not have pistachios on hand so added sprouted pumpkin seeds instead. Thanks for the recipe!

    9. Arman @ thebigmansworld
      April 21, 2015 AT 11:56 pm

      Eating Big Salads. It works!

      You’re photos look amazing, I’d faceplant my screen to have a bite!

    10. Christine (The Raw Project)
      April 21, 2015 AT 11:07 pm

      This looks wonderful and fun to modify too, great pictures. Thanks!

    11. Erin @ Her Heartland Soul
      April 21, 2015 AT 10:31 pm

      This looks so delicious! And what beautiful photos!

    12. hayliegrace
      April 21, 2015 AT 6:01 pm

      Wow, this looks amazing. I’m already having summer withdrawals as we head into winter here in the Southern Hemisphere! I may just have to make this salad to trick my mind.. Thank you for sharing! 🙂

    13. cleaneatingveggiegirl
      April 21, 2015 AT 4:48 pm

      The fact that you added pistachios to this makes me so, SO happy!! Yum 🙂

    14. Erin @ The Almond Eater
      April 21, 2015 AT 4:35 pm

      I actually have a box of Ancient Harvest quinoa in my pantry right now. Radishes are on my list of foods I have yet to conquer. I’m loving them in this salad though!

    15. Alyssa @ Life of bLyss
      April 21, 2015 AT 3:24 pm

      If you change your blog name to “Eating Big Salads,” does it mean I have to call you Salad instead of Bird? …Big? Big Salad?

      I don’t like change. The bird stays.

    16. Strength and Sunshine
      April 21, 2015 AT 12:48 pm

      Yum! This is so fresh and perfect! I love the pistachios!

    17. Andrew
      April 21, 2015 AT 12:46 pm

      Salad looks delicious. I will try Ancient Harvest now that I know more nutrients are retained than the huge Costco bags I usually buy. Thanks!

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