Orange Quinoa Salad with Chicken


My sister made this dish for our sister’s weekend and we devoured it—she said that even her finicky teenage boys love it.  The chicken makes it a meal but I’ve also made it without the chicken and it was scrumptious.  When my sister started her new job she found in her office a pile of recipes that someone left behind so we have no idea where the recipe originated, we’re just grateful for this little gem that was in the stack!




Our aunt introduced us to these window stars a few years ago, they’re a magical addition to the window view.   Some can take hours to make but the process is meditative and relaxing.  This post has a picture of my mother’s nursing-care room with a couple of stars to cheer her.  Here are more window star Images, a how-to book, and the kite paper needed to make them.



Quinoa is one of the wonder grains, containing all 9 essential amino acids making it a complete protein. It is also high in iron, calcium and phosphorus, and is both gluten-free and kosher for Passover.  This grain as we know it was domesticated around 4,000 years ago in the Andean region of modern day Ecuador, Columbia, Bolivia, and Peru.


I often use quinoa for pilafs, as a substitute it for couscous, or as a substitute for bulgar when making tabbouleh.  It fluffs nicely!



Rinsing the quinoa before cooking reduces the mildly bitter flavor which may come from residual saponins that are a part of the natural outer coating that has been removed.




This photo is after the quinoa and cranberries sat covered for 15 minutes.  All of the moisture has been absorbed and the dried cranberries have been softened by the heat and steam.  It is still very compact at this point, use a fork to fluff the cute little spheres.


Bon Appétit!



Orange Quinoa Chicken

Prep Time: 15 minutes   Cook Time: 35 minutes


Rinse and strain:

1 cup uncooked Quinoa


In a heavy saucepan, combine and bring to a boil:

1 cup Orange Juice

1 cup Water

1/4 teaspoon Salt

1 teaspoon Coriander, ground

heaping 1/4 teaspoon Cinnamon, ground

1/8 teaspoon Black Pepper

When it boils, add:

the rinsed Quinoa

Bring back to a boil, then cover, lower the heat to medium, and cook 15-18 minutes or until liquid is mostly absorbed.

Turn off heat and add:

1/4 cup Dried Cranberries

Cover, let stand 20 minutes, then fluff with a fork.

Transfer quinoa mixture to a large bowl.


1/4 cup sliced Almonds, toasted

1 1/2 cups Cooked Chicken, chopped

1 cup Cucumber, chopped

1/3 cup Red Onion, chopped

1/4 – 1/2 cup Fresh Cilantro, chopped (depending on your love of cilantro!)


In a small bowl, whisk together thoroughly:

1/3 cup Orange Juice

1 Tablespoon Fresh Lime Juice

2 teaspoons Dijon Mustard

1/4 teaspoon Salt

1/8 teaspoon Black Pepper

Drizzle in and continue whisking:

1 1/2 Tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Pour this juice mixture over the Quinoa and mix thoroughly.  

Let sit a few minutes to allow the flavors to blend. 

Eat this warm as a main dish or cold as a salad.



1 thought on “Orange Quinoa Salad with Chicken”

  • Looking forward to trying the recipe. Sounds delicious.
    And what an added bonus to see your beautiful window stars!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *