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Enjoy a bold, flavorful, and nutrient-dense roasted beet and quinoa salad with a bright vinaigrette for a simple and satisfying, make-ahead-friendly side or main!

completed Roasted Beet and Quinoa Salad plated

The key to a satisfying, versatile, low-budget, plant-based diet is finding simple ways to reuse the same ingredients. That’s how our salad collection has grown to include a beet kale salad, kale quinoa salad, roasted beet apple salad, and now roasted beet quinoa salad.

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Why You’ll Love Beetroot Quinoa Salad

This roasted beet and quinoa salad combines fluffy, chewy quinoa with earthy, lightly caramelized roasted beets, tender leafy greens, and crunchy toasted nuts, all tossed in a bright Dijon and parsley vinaigrette. It’s filling, nutritious, delicious, and loaded with textures and flavors to keep you satisfied.

Not only is this beetroot and quinoa salad packed with good-for-you fiber, protein, and heart-healthy fats, but antioxidant-rich beets are also an excellent source of several vitamins and minerals, like vitamin C, B6, potassium, folate, and magnesium. When combined with filling quinoa and your green of choice, it’s a truly nourishing dish.

Best of all, it’s naturally gluten-free, dairy-free, grain-free, vegetarian, and vegan. It’s also highly customizable/flexible, make-ahead friendly, transports well, and can be enjoyed warm or chilled at potlucks, BBQs, picnics, parties, and weekdays during the holiday season and year-round.

Looking for more holiday salad ideas? Try apple pecan salad, wild rice salad, or butternut squash salad.

The Ingredients and Substitutes

ingredients for Roasted Beet and Quinoa Salad measured out on a white surface

The Roasted Beets

  • Beetroot: We used red beets. To save time, use pre-cooked beets (steamed or roasted).
  • Olive oil: Or another neutral oil to roast the beets.
  • Sugar: Use refined or unrefined granulated sugar (like regular or brown sugar, coconut sugar) or maple syrup to roast the beets. A sugar alternative will work, too.
  • Sea Salt: To season the roasted beets.

The Beet Quinoa Salad

  • Quinoa: Use white or tri-color quinoa. Alternatively, substitute it with barley, wild rice, bulgur, farro, couscous, etc.

Cook the quinoa in vegetable stock for a more flavorful quinoa salad with beets.

  • Greens: We used peppery arugula this time, but you could use milder spinach, mixed greens, massaged kale, etc.
  • Nuts/seeds: Use raw or toasted pecans, walnuts, almonds, pistachios, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds/pepitas, etc., for crunch, protein, and heart-healthy fats. Candied nuts work, too, for sweetness.

The Dijon Dressing

  • Olive oil: Use good quality extra-virgin olive oil with a fairly mild flavor.
  • Vinegar: We used apple cider vinegar, though rice vinegar or white wine vinegar will also work well. For tangy depth, replace 50% with fresh lemon or lime juice.
  • Water: To bring this dressing to the correct consistency.
  • Garlic: We use garlic powder for ease, but use fresh minced garlic if preferred.
  • Dijon mustard: Dijon works best, though regular yellow mustard works in a pinch.
  • Fresh parsley: Add plenty of herbal flavor with fresh parsley (or cilantro).
  • Sea salt & black pepper: To season the dressing.
  • Sweetener: (Optional) To balance flavors, + 1-2 tbsp maple syrup, agave, brown sugar, etc.

Alternatively, try a maple balsamic, zingy ginger, or creamy miso tahini dressing.

What Could I Add to Beet Salad with Quinoa?

Enjoy quinoa beetroot salad year-round with added ingredients based on your preferred flavor, texture, and macros.

  • Starches: The natural earthy and sweet flavors of roasted pumpkin, butternut squash, or sweet potato all pair well with a quinoa and beet salad.
  • Carrots: Slices/diced and roasted OR shredded, raw – for color, texture, & nutrients.
  • Other veg: I.e., roasted or shredded raw broccoli, sprouts, etc.
  • Avocado: Diced/sliced for rich creaminess, antioxidants, and heart-healthy fats.
  • Chickpeas: (aka garbanzo beans) Tender or crispy for protein, fiber, and texture.
  • Vegan feta: Vegan feta cheese (or vegan goat cheese) adds tangy, salty flavor and creaminess.
  • Edamame: For plenty of plant-based protein and extra texture.
  • Apple/pear: Thinly sliced or matchsticks for sweet-tart flavor and a crisp texture.
  • Oranges: Add orange segments for a sweeter, citrusy quinoa beet orange salad.
  • For sweetness: Sprinkle over some pomegranate seeds or dried cranberries.

How to Make Roasted Beet and Quinoa Salad

Roast The Beets and Cook The Quinoa

  • Preheat the oven to 425F/220C and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper/a silicone mat. Then, wash and chop the beets into ½-inch pieces.
  • Then, rinse the quinoa thoroughly in a fine-mesh strainer. Transfer it to a saucepan and cook according to its package instructions (or follow our stove/Instant Pot quinoa recipes). Then, spread it across a large, rimmed baking sheet (optionally in the fridge) to cool down.
  • Meanwhile, toss the oil, salt, and sugar/sweetener with the chopped beets and spread in a single layer across the prepared baking tray.
  • Cover the tray with foil and bake for 35 minutes or until fork-tender.
  • Then, remove the foil and broil for 2-5 minutes until lightly charred.
  • Remove the tray from the oven and set it aside to cool.

Assemble the Salad

  • First, combine all the dressing ingredients in a bowl and whisk or in a jar and shake thoroughly (for about 10-20 seconds), then set aside.

Just before serving, try the dressing and adjust any element to taste.

  • When all the elements are ready and cooled, combine the quinoa and beets in a large salad bowl with half of the dressing and toss well.

If the quinoa is still a little warm, then place the bowl in the refrigerator until chilled. Note that slightly warm quinoa soaks up dressing more, becoming more flavorful.

  • Finally, toss in the greens and nuts/seeds. Serve with the extra dressing on the side- Enjoy!

FAQs

Can I enjoy quinoa beet salad warm?

Yes, but in that case, use greens that hold up to heat, like kale or spinach, rather than delicate leafy greens.

How to toast nuts/seeds?

Toast them in a dry skillet until toasty and fragrant, stirring often. Alternatively, spread across a baking tray and toast in the oven for 5-8 minutes at 325F/165C.

Can I make it ahead?

You can cook the quinoa and roast the beets 3-4 days in advance, ready to assemble before serving.

Pro Recipe Tips

  • Rinse the quinoa: This will remove the natural saponin coating, which can cause the quinoa to taste bitter (and even soap-like) if not rinsed thoroughly.
  • Be careful handling beets: They stain, so it’s a good idea to wear gloves and rinse your cutting board/kitchen tools immediately after use to avoid staining.
  • Leave it to rest: For the best flavor, make the dressing early on so the flavors can meld. After tossing the salad with the dressing, leave it to sit for 10-15 minutes before serving.
  • When to add the dressing: We recommend adding half the dressing to the quinoa while it’s still slightly warm, as it absorbs it more, for better flavor.
completed Roasted Beet and Quinoa Salad plated

Serving Suggestions

Enjoy hearty quinoa and beetroot salad as a main or in smaller portions alongside:

Storage Instructions

Store leftover quinoa beet arugula salad in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. For the longest shelf life, store the salad and dressing separately and only add the nuts when serving.

You can also freeze cooked quinoa and beets in airtight containers for up to 3 months. Then, leave it/them to thaw in the fridge overnight before serving chilled or reheating.

completed Roasted Beet and Quinoa Salad in a storage container

More Hearty Vegan Salad Recipes

Or browse our entire collection of plant-based, budget-friendly salad recipes.

Photos by Alfonso Revilla

Roasted Beet and Quinoa Salad

5 from 4 votes
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
Total: 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings: 4 to 6
Enjoy a bold, flavorful, and nutrient-dense roasted beet and quinoa salad with a bright vinaigrette for a simple and satisfying, make-ahead-friendly side or main!

Ingredients 

  • 1 ½ cups of uncooked raw quinoa
  • 2 pounds of beets, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • ½ tablespoon of sugar
  • 5 ounces of mixed greens
  • 1 to 2 cups of your choice of nuts or seeds

Dressing

  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons of water
  • 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • ½ teaspoon of black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons of garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon of Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup of parsley, chopped

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. and line a large baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Set aside.
  • Using a fine strainer, wash the raw quinoa thoroughly to remove the bitter flavor. Cook according to package instructions. While the quinoa is cooking, prepare the beets.
  • Place the beets on the baking sheet, drizzle olive oil, and sprinkle the salt and sugar. Mix and spread them in a single layer. Cover the baking sheet with aluminum foil.
  • Roast on the middle rack of the oven for 35 minutes. Carefully lift the aluminum foil and remove one of the chunks of beet. Taste to see if it’s tender. Add more time accordingly to reach a soft texture. Once they are fully cooked, remove the aluminum foil and broil for 2 to 5 minutes or until a light charred texture is achieved. Remove from the oven and set aside on a cooling rack.
  • Once the quinoa and beets are ready and cooling down, make the dressing.
  • In a jar with a lid add the olive oil, water, apple cider vinegar, salt, black pepper, garlic powder, dijon mustard, and parsley. Tightly close the jar with the lid and shake for 10 to 20 seconds. Set aside.
  • In a large salad bowl, add the quinoa and beets. Add ½ of the dressing and mix well. If the quinoa is still warm, place the bowl in the refrigerator until chilled, otherwise, add the arugula and nuts/seeds, and toss to mix.
  • Serve with the remaining dressing on the side.

Notes

  • Rinse the quinoa: This will remove the natural saponin coating, which can cause the quinoa to taste bitter (and even soap-like) if not rinsed thoroughly.
  • Be careful handling beets: They stain, so it’s a good idea to wear gloves and rinse your cutting board/kitchen tools immediately after use to avoid staining.
  • Leave it to rest: For the best flavor, make the dressing early on so the flavors can meld. After tossing the salad with the dressing, leave it to sit for 10-15 minutes before serving.
  • When to add the dressing: We recommend adding half the dressing to the quinoa while it’s still slightly warm, as it absorbs it more, for better flavor.

Nutrition

Calories: 699kcalCarbohydrates: 77gProtein: 20gFat: 37gSaturated Fat: 5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 8gMonounsaturated Fat: 23gSodium: 830mgPotassium: 1488mgFiber: 16gSugar: 17gVitamin A: 3949IUVitamin C: 49mgCalcium: 193mgIron: 7mg

Disclaimer: Although plantbasedonabudget.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, kindly note that these are only estimates. Nutritional information may be affected based on the product type, the brand that was purchased, and in other unforeseeable ways. Plantbasedonabudget.com will not be held liable for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on nutritional information. If you need to follow a specific caloric regimen, please consult your doctor first.

Additional Info

Author: Toni Okamoto
Course: Lunch, Salad
Cuisine: American
Method: Stovetop, Oven
Diet: Vegan
Tried this recipe?Please tag us at @PlantBasedOnABudget! 🙂
About

Toni Okamoto

“They say you are what you eat, so I strive to be healthy.
My goal in life is not to be rich or wealthy,
‘Cause true wealth comes from good health and wise ways…
we got to start taking better care of ourselves ” – Dead Prez

More about Toni Okamoto

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