Quinoa Salad with Sumac and Preserved Lemon Dressing

Purplish-red ground sumac, a Middle Eastern spice, delivers a puckery punch. Serve this quick quinoa salad with roast chicken, grilled chops or baked fish.

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  • Servings: 4
KEY: Christmas, Thanksgiving, Middle Eastern, Moroccan, Appetizers/starters, Beans, Grains & Legumes, Salads, Side Dishes, Fast, Gluten-Free, Healthy, Make Ahead, Vegetarian, Web Exclusive, Dinner, Lunch

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  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1/2 preserved lemon, rind only, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 teaspoons ground sumac

How to make this recipe

  1. Rinse the quinoa in 3 changes of water in a bowl, rubbing the grains and letting them settle each time before pouring off the water (if the quinoa does not settle, drain in a large fine-mesh sieve after each rinse).
  2. Cook the quinoa in a 3- to 4-quart saucepan of boiling well-salted water until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain well in a sieve.
  3. While the quinoa cooks, put the preserved lemon, lemon juice and olive oil in a large bowl. Whisk together, then season to taste with salt and pepper.
  4. Add the quinoa warm to the bowl and toss to combine with the dressing. Add the parsley and sumac to the quinoa and toss gently but thoroughly. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Make Ahead

The salad can be made up to 1 day ahead and refrigerated in an airtight container. Bring to room temperature before serving.


Look for ground sumac in Middle Eastern markets and some specialty foods or spice shops.

Contributed By Photo © Guy Ambrosino Published February 2014

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