Images by Kimberley Stakal

In the warm-weather season, I enjoy eating coleslaw so much that I often treat it as a main course, not just as the typical sidekick to a slab of meat. To upgrade a salad from side dish status to entrée, you usually add a protein or some hearty grains. In this recipe, wholesome quinoa contributes both.

I call this my Summer Slaw Pilaf with Quinoa Recipe, and it’s great for summer menus: a lively mix of raw veggies, whole grains, and a minimalist citrusy dressing. (And did I mention vegan-friendly!) It’s also incredibly simple to prepare. All vegetables are merely pulsed in a food processor, then tossed with cooked quinoa and a few pantry staples for the zippy dressing.

The slaw here calls for standard vegetables—carrots, cabbage, and fresh herbs—but feel free to toss in whatever crunchy veggies you have on hand. It’s one of those recipes that can be tailored to whatever is looking good in your fridge (or garden) that day.

Summer Slaw Pilaf with Quinoa Recipe [Vegan]

Makes about 4 servings

Ingredients
½ medium head green cabbage
1 medium carrot, scrubbed
1 medium cucumber, peeled or scrubbed
1 medium orange, segmented
1 large handful fresh herbs of choice (I used cilantro)
2 cups cooked quinoa
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
Sea salt and cracked black pepper, to taste

Directions

Combine cabbage, carrot, cucumber, orange, and herbs in a food processor. Pulse until coarsely chopped (or finely chopped, if you like a minced-style slaw).

Transfer slaw mixture to a large mixing bowl. Add quinoa, oil, and vinegar; toss well to coat evenly. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve immediately, or cover and chill for a few hours to allow flavors to develop.

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Image by Kimberley Stakal