Home RecipesLunch Mexican Quinoa Salad Recipe

Mexican Quinoa Salad Recipe

by Adrianne

Mexican Quinoa Salad is for lunch today. With taste and texture, this is a Mexican Quinoa Salad with a Taco flavoured drizzle.

Mexican Quinoa Salad in a large white bowl

Salads bring colour and good vibes to our life. Readers favorites are the Crispy Chicken BLT SaladSalmon Zucchini Salad, Watermelon Cucumber Salad (vegetarian). Popular festive salads are the Thanksgiving Salad and the Christmas Salad.

This recipe makes a HUGE salad, like MASSIVE, you could feed a whole army of people from the one bowl if it.

Usually when I make salads, I average a 4 person serve, which is perfect to food prep over the weekends and then work lunches are all sorted for the week ahead. This salad, however, is one I recommend when you have a bbq or a picnic or family gathering and you need a go to large salad.

Quinoa salads are so versatile, they can be made ahead of time and travel well. This was something that crossed my mind as I was developing the recipe. I think everyone of us knows the stress of driving with a food plate on the passenger seat which is going here there and everywhere and you wonder if by the time you get to the location you will still have any food to take in! Trust me folks, you will not have that problem with this salad, as it travels A ok!

About the recipe:

  • I wanted a salad to feed a crowd
  • Had to appeal to young and old as we were having both at the party
  • Hot or cold, could I make it optional to heat up, but also have it work cold if no time to heat and eat
  • A recipe to accompany a meat dish or equally stand on its own
  • I wanted it to be ‘Mexican’ style in appearance as well as flavour

So, let’s start with our Taco Flavoured Drizzle…to dress this Mexican Quinoa Salad. I have used a combination of low fat greek yoghurt and taco seasoning. Mixed together these ingredients have a touch of spice which works really well with the vegetables in the salad.

To make our drizzle,  it is as easy as adding the yoghurt and the taco seasoning to your blender jug and blitzing to combine


Mexican Quinoa Salad 2 | Sweet Caramel Sunday

Now that our drizzle is done, let’s talk about the salad.

There is A LOT of quinoa in here. Usually quinoa doubles when cooked. So 1/2 cup dry quinoa makes 1 cup cooked quinoa. This recipe calls for 2 cups of dried quinoa, so you guessed it….you will have 4 cups of cooked quinoa. That forms the base of our salad. It is sort of like the lettuce if you compare it to a leaf based salad. Speaking of which, you might want to check out my Crispy Chicken Caesar salad, it will give you a totally different style of salad for another occasion.

Back to our Mexican Quinoa Salad, we have our drizzle and our quinoa….now let’s add some grilled peppers, back beans and corn. Yes, by all means, each of these ingredients can be sourced from the local grocery store and whilst we all know fresh can be best, we want to make life easy for ourselves as well. So I used tinned beans, corn and peppers from a jar. (Almost sacrilegious, I know!).

The bacon is our ingredient to turn our salad from ‘boring’, into ‘yummo’ and you have the option to use fake bacon if you have some vegetarians coming to the table.

Mexican Quinoa Salad 3 | Sweet Caramel Sunday


The drizzle really brings together all of the ingredients and if you want other ideas for using greek yoghurt as the base for a salad dressing, I would recommend checking out my Edamame Quinoa Salad or my Broccoli Rice Salad with Basil Pesto Drizzle. These both have the same idea, but with different flavour combinations.


Mexican Quinoa Salad 4 | Sweet Caramel Sunday


As with most of my salads, you can dress and toss to take with you, or dress and toss at the location. If you know you might have some fussy eaters, I would recommend the later as they can grab a bit of the salad out and put on their plate without missing out.


Mexican Quinoa Salad 5 | Sweet Caramel Sunday


Roast Chicken works a treat with this salad, so if you are looking for another serving option, then grab one of those, whip up your salad, some bread rolls and you are done!

Let’s check out the recipe….


Mexican Quinoa Salad | Sweet Caramel Sunday

Mexican Quinoa Salad

This Mexican Quinoa Salad is perfect for a family lunch or BBQ. With quinoa, black beans, corn and roast peppers, your guests will love the combination of flavours. A taco flavoured drizzle compliments the dish, with some freshly squeezed lime juice for a bit of zing! 
5 from 5 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine: Australian
Keyword: mexican quinoa salad, quinoa salad, salad, beans, corn
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 203kcal
Author: Adrianne


Mexican Quinoa Salad

  • 2 cups dried quinoa
  • 4 cups water
  • 200g streaky bacon
  • 3 cups roast peppers
  • 1 425g corn kernels
  • 1 425g black beans

Taco Flavoured Drizzle

  • 1 cup low fat greek yoghurt
  • 35 grams taco seasoning
  • 3 limes cut into wedges


Mexican Quinoa Salad

  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper. Place a wire rack into baking tray, cook bacon for 20 minutes or until crispy. Cut into small pieces when cooled 
  • Add 4 cups of water to a medium saucepan with 2 cups of dried quinoa. Cook until all of the water is absorbed. 
  • Drain and rinse corn kernels
  • Drain and rinse black beans 
  • Drain roast peppers 
  • Add cooked quinoa, bacon, black beans, corn and roast peppers to a large serving bowl
    Mexican Quinoa Salad 3
  • Dress with Taco Drizzle and toss salad 
    Mexican Quinoa Salad 4
  • Serve with fresh lime wedges 
    Mexican Quinoa Salad | Sweet Caramel Sunday

Taco Flavoured Drizzle

  • Combine taco seasoning and greek yoghurt in blender jug and blitz to combine 
    Mexican Quinoa Salad 2


  • The seasoning mix blends well with the yoghurt. It has a mild taste and is not too spicy. 
  • Use kitchen scissors to cut cooked bacon into smaller pieces 
  • The fresh lime juice tastes amazing squeezed all over the salad - add it at the very last minute prior to serving or give people the wedges for them to squeeze themselves. 
  • Vegetarian option: use fake bacon 


Calories: 203kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 1092mg | Potassium: 341mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 710IU | Vitamin C: 33.7mg | Calcium: 87mg | Iron: 2.8mg
Did you make this recipe? Share on Instagram!It makes my day when you make my recipes! Tag @sweetcaramelsunday


Mexican Quinoa Salad


After a few more salad ideas? Wel luckily I have a few to choose from on SCS!

Salad Frenzy

It is absolutely pouring with rain here in vegas, it is a nice change, we have terrible droughts in the regional parts of the state at the moment :(.

Have a great weekend, enjoy your time in the kitchen. That and the yoga mat will be where I am spending my time.

Adrianne x (Tonks gets scared of heavy rain and thunder so he is hiding, but when he emerges, I will be sure to take a pic of him for the next post).


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rachaelstray August 24, 2018 - 10:47 am

Ooooh this would e perfect for a BBQ!

Rachael | https://rachaelstray.com

Natalie October 31, 2018 - 6:31 am

5 stars
I love quinoa! Looks so delicious and perfect for a healthy dinner!

Adrianne October 31, 2018 - 9:50 am

Thanks Natalie! Yes so good for a healthy option!

Tisha October 31, 2018 - 7:59 am

5 stars
Love how flavorful this is!! And that drizzle looks incredible!

Adrianne October 31, 2018 - 10:10 am

It it a good and easy drizzle thanks Tisha!

Shashi at SavorySpin October 31, 2018 - 9:33 am

5 stars
I love quinoa salads – and this one you have here looks so flavor and texture packed!

Adrianne October 31, 2018 - 10:18 am

Cheers Shashi, yes me too on the texture side of things!!

Danielle Wolter October 31, 2018 - 10:48 am

5 stars
I am just loving this salad! Wonderful flavors and I drooled a little bit over that drizzle!

Danielle October 31, 2018 - 10:50 am

5 stars
Loving all the colours and vegetables you have going on here. The taco drizzle sounds amazing too!


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