Summer quinoa salad with avocado and basil recipe

quinoa salad with avocado and basil recipe

As the summer heat continues, you might be looking for some inspiration for a delicious filling and nutritious lunch – look no further! Our quinoa salad with avocado and basil really hits the spot, with the combination of sweet tomatoes, with the creaminess of the avocado and the lovely summer tang of basil, served with a light crunch of quinoa. Yum!

In this recipe, we decided to cook the onion, pepper and include peas (for some added protein). However, if you prefer to have a raw vegetable salad, you can easily swap the ingredients – if you like raw onion, perhaps swap for a salad onion for a milder taste and change the peas for diced carrot or courgette.  

We like to serve this recipe at room temperature – this means the tomatoes have a little more taste, as does the basil. Rubbing the avocado in lemon juice can help to slow down the discoloration of the avocado, but it is still best to add it just before serving, for that lovely bright green colour.

If you like this recipe, and love quinoa, you might also enjoy on of our other quinoa recipes on our blog: stir fry quinoa with spinach and walnuts

Recipe: Quinoa salad with avocado and basil

Serves: 8


2 cups of quinoa
5 cups of cold water
2 tbsp dried basil
1 large red onion, finely sliced
2 yellow peppers, finely diced
1 tbsp dried basil
1 cup peas
20 cherry tomatoes, cut in half
Large handful fresh basil, chopped
Large handful spinach, roughly chopped
1 ripe avocado, peeled and cut into small pieces
3 tbsp lemon juice


Rinse the quinoa. Then toast the quinoa in a saucepan on medium heat until it starts to turn lightly brown, stirring constantly for about 5 minutes. Add the cold water, 2 tbsp dried basil and bring it to a boil, then cover. Simmer on low heat until cooked (check packet instructions). Let it cool down.

Meanwhile, cook the red onion in a pan, using water to prevent sticking, for 3 minutes, until it starts to soften. Add the yellow pepper, 1 tbsp dried basil and continue to cook for 5 minutes.

Add the peas and cook for 2 minutes, until the veggies are cooked but still firm.

Remove from the heat and allow to cool.

When the quinoa has cooled down, place it in a bowl and add the vegetable mixture. Add the cherry tomatoes, fresh basil and spinach.

Just before serving, cut the avocado. Pour over the lemon juice and toss well (this will help to stop the avocado discolouring).

Add the avocado into the quinoa bowl, mix well.

Serve at room temperature, topped with basil and cherry tomatoes.

Plant-based food at La Crisalida health retreats 

La Crisalida Retreats serves home cooked, fresh, plant-based food, to provide our guests with good nutrition, to support their health and wellbeing. You can read about the plant-based food served at La Crisalida Retreats here: plant-based food at La Crisalida Retreats. Our seasonal menus include lots of wholegrains, seeds, nuts, vegetables, fruit as well as pulses and legumes.

We hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do.

About the author

Lisa is one of the founders of La Crisalida Retreats. She is an Epidemiologist, therapeutic hatha and yin yoga teacher and also teaches mindfulness meditation. Lisa has studied NLP and hypnosis, as well as nutrition (she designs the menus).