The Ardent Prep: Herby Vegetarian Quinoa Salad

This is the first recipe in the The Ardent Prep series “Ground Turkey, Quinoa, and Zucchini.” To view the original blog post, click here. To view the other two recipes in this series, click the links at the bottom of the page. I hope you enjoy this prep series!


Prepared quinoa (use all except 1/4 cup and 1/2 cup, divided, for other two recipes)

1/2 of the prepared cubed and roasted zucchini (if you divided it into two containers on prep day, simply use one of the two containers)

2 TBSP olive oil

2 shallots, thinly sliced

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp ground cumin

3/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1 TBSP honey

1/4 cup (about 5) Medjool dates, pitted and coarsley chopped (or raisins)

Handful fresh mint, finely chopped

Handful fresh parsley, finely chopped

Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. In a medium skillet, warm olive oil over medium heat. Add thinly sliced shallot and pinch of salt and sauté 2-3 minutes, until softened and slightly golden.
  2. Add minced garlic and cumin and cook for an additional minute, stirring constantly, until fragrant.
  3. Pour in apple cider vinegar and honey, and stir to combine. Lower heat slightly and allow the mixture to simmer and bubble until slightly thickened and the liquid has reduced by about half. Add chopped dates and allow them to sit in the liquid while it is still hot, to soften. Set aside.
  4. Warm up the quinoa and zucchini in a large mixing bowl in the microwave (or on the stovetop, if preferred). Combine the warmed quinoa and zucchini, chopped herbs, and apple cider vinaigrette (it’s okay if it’s still hot). Taste and add salt/pepper if desired.
  5. Serve warm or at room temperature. Enjoy!

Barbecue Turkey Quinoa Burgers with Zucchini and Burst Tomatoes

Buffalo Stuffed Zucchini Boats