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Close up of Cold Quinoa Salad

Summer Quinoa Vegetable Salad with Fresh Mozzarella

A delicious, healthy and texture-rich Quinoa salad made with the freshest farmers market finds! A zippy balsamic dressing ties all the flavors together. Summer Quinoa Vegetable Salad with Fresh Mozzarella is vegetarian, easily vegan and gluten-free.
Prep time below includes 10 minutes for shelling fresh peas. If using frozen, shave about 10 minutes off the prep time.
Recipe adapted fromĀ Quinoa; The Everyday Superfood.
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine American, Vegetarian
Keyword Quinoa Salad, Quinoa Vegetable Salad
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 16 minutes
Total Time 56 minutes
Servings 5 - 6
Calories 311kcal
Author Traci York | Vanilla And Bean


For the Salad:

  • 3/4 C (160g) Quinoa white or multicolor, rinsed and drained
  • 1 1/2 C (350g) Water
  • 1 C (140g) Frozen Sweet Peas or 1 lb fresh shelling peas works here too, yielding about 1 C shelled.
  • 1 1/2 C (225g) Cherry Tomatoes halved and/or quartered, about 1/2 - 3/4 pint
  • 1/4 C (70g) Purple Onion minced, about 1/4 of an onion
  • 1 C (125g) Yellow Bell Pepper diced small, about 1 pepper
  • 1 C (125g) Red Bell Pepper diced small, about 1 pepper
  • 1 1/2 C (170g) Zucchini diced small, about 1 zucchini
  • 3/4 C (125g) fresh Ciliegine Mozzarella quartered (see note* for vegan option)
  • 2 - 3 Tbs Fresh Parsley chopped fine OR use fresh torn basil
  • 10 grinds of fresh Pepper
  • 3 - 4 Sprigs of Fresh Thyme Leaves and Flowers for garnish (optional)

For the Dressing:

  • 2 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 1/2 Tbs Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 Tbs Lemon Juice
  • 1/2 tsp Prepared Mustard
  • 2 tsp Fresh Garlic minced or grated
  • 1/2 tsp Oregano dried
  • 3/4 tsp Fine Sea Salt + more to taste


For the Salad:

  • In a medium saucepan bring water to a boil. Place rinsed quinoa in boiling water, turn the burner to medium-low, and simmer for about 15 minutes. Turn off heat and stir, making sure all the water is absorbed. Cover and allow to sit covered for 5 minutes. Fluff with fork then pop the quinoa in the fridge to cool, uncovered, for about 20 minutes, stirring a few times to release steam.
  • While the quinoa is cooking/cooling, shell your fresh peas or measure out the frozen peas. Set aside. Fill a small pot half way with water and bring to a boil. Plunge the peas (fresh or frozen) into the boiling water and cook for one minute (no need to bring back to a boil). Strain then rinse the peas with cold water to stop the cooking. Drain and set aside.
  • Prepare the tomatoes, onions, bell peppers, zucchini, fresh mozzarella, and parsley by chopping and dicing, placing each in a large bowl where all the mixing will happen. Add the peas, parsley and pepper.
  • Remove the cooled quinoa from the refrigerator and place in the mixing bowl with all the veggies. Set aside.

For the Dressing:

  • In a small lidded jar, add the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, mustard, garlic oregano and salt. Shake until an emulsion is formed. If too thick, add a splash of water to thin. Shake again.

To Assemble:

  • Pour the dressing over the salad and gently mix until all ingredients are evenly distributed. Taste and adjust salt and pepper as needed.
  • Garnish with fresh thyme leaves (if using), and more parsley or basil. Enjoy on the day made for the freshest taste and preservation of pea color (they tend to get a little dingy on day two), but it will store in the fridge for up to three days.


*Make it Dairy Free: Omit the mozzarella or use your favorite dairy free mozzarella torn into bite size pieces.
Recipe adapted from Quinoa; The Everyday Superfood.


Calories: 311kcal | Carbohydrates: 39g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 13mg | Sodium: 364mg | Potassium: 712mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 2186IU | Vitamin C: 147mg | Calcium: 150mg | Iron: 4mg