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Appetizers and Sides

Chicken and Avocado Quinoa Summer Salad

One of the best part about summer is enjoying cool summer salads. Don’t think I am crazy now, this one is really good and is so great to have in the refrigerator to snack on throughout the day.

I love quinoa and it’s great in this recipe but you can substitute couscous if you’d like. This salad is dressed in a light lemon dressing that is perfect on about any salad. I use it all of the time. I have added peppers, broccoli, chicken and avocado, but the sky’s the limit, use whatever vegetables or meat you have in the refrigerator.

Hope you enjoy!

Here’s my line-up of ingredients:  broccoli florets (no you don’t use the entire bag you see :), cooked chicken, quinoa, parmesan cheese, sweet peppers, avocado, lemon juice (I usually have fresh lemons and prefer them, but when you are out, the bottled stuff works too), and olive oil.

Start with some nice broccoli florets.

Add your sweet peppers and cooked chicken.

Add a touch of Parmesan cheese.

Add your cooled cooked quinoa.

Dice up a ripe avocado.

Whisk together your dressing ingredients, pour over salad and gently stir to combine. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

How pretty is that? It’s equally as refreshing and delicious. Enjoy!


Chicken and Avocado Quinoa Summer Salad

2 cups uncooked quinoa, rinsed and drained

2 cups broccoli florets

2 cups cooked, cubed chicken breast

1/2 cup diced yellow or red sweet peppers or bell peppers

1/4 cup fresh parmesan cheese

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 avocado, diced

1. Cook quinoa according to package directions. Transfer to a large bowl, stirring every 5 minutes to break up. Let cool for 15 minutes.

2. Place broccoli, chicken, peppers, and parmesan cheese into a large bowl. Add quinoa and stir to combine.

3. To prepare dressing, place olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper into a medium bowl, whisking to combine. Pour over quinoa, stirring then gently stir in cubed avocado.

4. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Makes 8 servings


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35 Responses | Comments RSS

  1. 1

    It looks wonderful, Jenny! Last week I saw like 7 quinoa salad recipes in a 24 hr period on blogs…not exaggerating. I seriously MUST make one and get with the program. It’s been too long since I’ve made any quinoa.

    It’s all about desserts, not quinoa, lately 🙂

    • 1.1
      Jenny says:

      Averie, I know, I have been all about the desserts lately too. Have to sneak a healthy recipe in from time to time 🙂

  2. 2

    Looks like an awesome summer meal!

  3. 3

    it’s all about simplicity and letting the ingredients shine…i love that!

  4. 4

    I am a major quinoa lover. I cook it so much during the summer because it’s great in cold salads too!

  5. 5
    Mrs. Fish says:

    I love summer meals like this, I can’t wait to try this one!

  6. 6
    Kelly says:

    Ooohh, this looks fabulous. You’re making me hungry for lunch and it’s only 7:37am where I live!

  7. 7

    Jenny, it is fun to see you with a savory! This quinoa must be tried. It is one of our favorite grains 🙂

  8. 8

    Mmm, you had me at avocado, Jenny. This looks like a perfect summer lunch for me to pack for work!

  9. 9
    Maria says:

    Great summer salad!

  10. 10
    Holly says:

    Hey there! This loos so yummy but why not cook the broccoli? Have you tried it like that? Just curious b/c I know my little people will struggle with the raw stuff 🙂
    Thanks for the great recipes!

  11. 11
    Tracy says:

    Sounds delicious! I’m mildly addicted to quinoa. 🙂

  12. 12

    Funny, we were just talking about Quinoa yesterday. It’s something that my Mom can eat (gluten free), and she’s living w/ us for a while. Will have to give this recipe a shot! For some reason I was looking at the yellow in your pics and thinking it looked like mango. Wouldn’t mango be good in this too??

  13. 13

    These pictures look so pretty! We got into Quinoa last year but over did it and burnt out, haven’t touched it in months. Sad because it’s so good for you compared to alternatives. But this recipe looks too good to not try!

  14. 14

    Yum I have been obsessed with couscous and quinoa lately so this salad is right up my alley! Also where did you get that adorable little red pot/bowl?? Too cute!

  15. 15

    Looks delicious! I really want to try eating more quinoa, this is a great recipe to save!

  16. 16
    Alana says:

    This looks amazing! Making it tonight with Couscous. Thanks for another great recipe!

  17. 17
    Kim in MD says:

    This looks so delicious! Quinoa is so healthy, too!

  18. 18

    Light and refreshing! Love this dish!

  19. 19
    Russ says:


    Quick comment. This looks great! I have one suggestion…replace the packaged food with fresh. Whole broccoli, fresh lemon juice and peppers. Good time to buy from your local farmers market.


  20. 20
    Emily says:

    I love chicken, broccoli, quinoa! Tis looks delicious and refreshing or summer!
    I’ve got some fun recipes up for July 4th (aka pretty pictures)
    Recipes Fashion Marriage

  21. 21

    Love seeing new ways to use quinoa! One of my new faves!

  22. 22
  23. 23

    We eat a lot of quinoa and I’m always excited to find a new recipe for it. This is perfect for those dog days of summer.

  24. 24
    SharonS says:

    My mom is here visiting and I made this for dinner this evening! It was amazing! I’ve never had quinoa and it was wonderful! Thanks for another great recipe.

  25. 25
    ML says:

    Woah it looks really good!
    Defenitely gonna try it this week 🙂

  26. 26
    Julie says:

    Cute blog. 🙂 Love your pictures! Excited to try some yummy recipes

  27. 27

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Jenny Flake

Welcome to Picky Palate, my online kitchen! You'll usually find me with a cookie in one hand and a salad in the other. It's all about the balance :) The recipes you'll see are my creations. The Picky Palate Cookbook is now available. Enjoy!