Toasted Quinoa Sesame Shrimp Salad

by Chrissy

If I didn’t have a toaster-oven at work, my life would be in shambles. Seriously, ask any of my co-workers. Some things are just better toasted.


Here are a few:


-Pecans & sliced almonds

-Sourdough bread


-Sandwiches…paninis, duh!



I now need to add this to the list: quinoa and sesame oil!

Toasted and together, these things are a flavorful combo!

I am sure that after a heavy Easter brunch, and evening dinner—or possibly just some evening snacking, since your belly was too full from brunch to fit a full meal—this simple dish is a good one to get you back on track to healthy eating.

Like soup, or pasta salad, it’s also one of those meals that tastes twice as good the next day, so I would encourage making enough for lunch left-overs the next day.


How to:

Add 1 Tbsp oil and quinoa to a high-sided skillet, and let toast on medium-high heat, stirring semi-frequently.

In about 6 to 8 minutes, the quinoa should be a deeper golden color and should smell terrifically nutty. Add the garlic, ginger and red pepper flakes and cook for another minute. Then, add water and salt, cover and  bring to a boil, reducing it back to medium heat. Cook until the water is absorbed, so about 15 to 18 minutes.

Prep veggies and add them to the quinoa mix.

Give it a stir and continue to cook, covered, for about 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit, covered for another couple of minutes.

Make the vinaigrette.

Pour over quinoa and mix. Cook the shrimp that has been marinating (per instructions, below), and mix into the quinoa. Dish up and garnish with some lovely cilantro and sesame seeds.

Yep this is about to rock your world.


Toasted Quinoa Sesame Shrimp Salad

adapted from: Eating Well

serves 3-4


2/3 cup bell pepper, finely diced (we used red and orange)

½ cup asparagus, cut into ½ inch pieces

¾ cup green onion, sliced

1 Tbsp ginger, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup quinoa

2 cups water

½ tsp red pepper flakes

½ tsp salt

1 1/2 Tbsp grapeseed oil

15-20 shrimp (defrosted, deveined, de-tailed)

2 tsp soy sauce, for shrimp marinade

Pepper, to taste

Cilantro, chopped to garnish

Sesame seeds, to garnish



2 tsp low sodium soy sauce

¼ cup rice vinegar

2 1/2 tsp toasted sesame oil

2 Tbsp grapeseed oil



In a bowl, toss shrimp with 2 tsp soy sauce and a dash of pepper and let marinate, while prepping the quinoa.


Using a large, high-sided skillet with a tight-fitting lid, add 1Tbsp grapeseed oil and quinoa, and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the quinoa starts to turn to a golden color, about 6 to 8 minutes. Add garlic, ginger and red pepper flakes and continue to cook, stirring for another minute. Add water and salt and bring to a boil. Cover and cook over medium heat until the water is absorbed, about 15-18 minutes. Add the bell pepper, green onions, and asparagus and cook for another 5 minutes, on medium-low heat, covered. Remove from the heat and let stand, covered, for another couple minutes.


Meanwhile, whisk 2 Tbsp grapeseed oil, 2 tsp soy sauce, rice vinegar and sesame oil in a bowl. Add the vinaigrette to the quinoa and veggies and toss to combine.


Remove the shrimp from the soy sauce and lay on a paper towel to remove most of the liquid. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and add the remaining ½ Tbsp of grapeseed oil. When hot, add the shrimp and cook for about 2-4 minutes, depending on the size, turning them over halfway through. Stir the shrimp into the warm quinoa salad mixture. Garnish with cilantro  and  sesame seeds and enjoy!


From the Little Yellow Kitchen,


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Pin It!

4 Comments to “Toasted Quinoa Sesame Shrimp Salad”

  1. What an awesome idea! I never thought of toasting it before eating, and my biggest complaint about the grain is the lack of flavor, so this surely would help :)

  2. This is such a pretty, colorful dish! Sesame oil adds such a wonderful flavor to Asian inspired sauces and vinaigrettes. Looks amazing!

  3. Made this tonight…yummy. I cooked everything separately. I roasted zucchini and peppers in the oven then added them to the cooked quinoa and shrimp.

  4. Chrissy

    Hi Jeanne, thanks for your comment! That sounds like a great idea to roast the zucc and peppers. I bet they were tasty!