Packed with fresh vegetables, quinoa, herbs, and plant powered protein this copycat Costco quinoa salad is the perfect lunch for a hot summer day!
Wether you've tried the Costco quinoa salad or you haven't been lucky enough to try it, this lentil quinoa salad recipe is sure to be a new staple in your house.
Why should you make this lentil quinoa salad?
- It's easy! All you need is a good knife, a large bowl and your ingredients and you're good to go. This salad should take you under 30 minutes from start to finish and doesn't require any cooking (other than making the quinoa)!
- It's made with nourishing ingredients! Fresh vegetables, lentils for some plant based protein, quinoa for your source of whole grains and olive oil as your healthy fat- this salad truly has it all!
- It stores well so it is perfect for meal prep or potlucks!
What ingredients do I need to make this copycat Costco quinoa salad?
Quinoa- Any quinoa works! I personally use white quinoa (we use the Kirkland brand) as I find it has less of a bitter taste but the choice is yours!
Lentils- As I mention in the recipe, I use canned lentils to help make this recipe even easier! If you are someone that prefers to use dry lentils that is totally fine just ensure you cook them first according to package instructions.
Vegetables- Cherry tomatoes, cucumber, kale, red onion and red bell pepper (plus parsley if you want to coutn that as a vegetable) are all you are going to need for this copycat Costco quinoa salad recipe! This is a great reicpe to make in the summer to use up all your fresh garden veggies or take advantage of local produce deals!
Olive oil- Any neutral tasting oil will work just fine in this recipe. I personally use olive oil as I find it's a great monounsaturated fat that tastes perfect in salad dressings however vegetable oil or avocado oil also work!
Lemon juice- Fresh lemon juice is always best when makign salad dressings. Although the presqueezed lemon juice will work, I find sometimes the taste just isn't as fresh and powerful as when you squeeze the lemons yourself.
Feta cheese- My very favourite cheese to add to salads. Although the original Costco quinoa salad recipe doesn't have feta in it I personally just think the touch of saltiness really brings these flavours together. However if you want to, you can leave it out!
Apple cider vinegar- The secret to all my favourite salad dressing recipes. We purchase ours at Costco and just leave it in the fridge for whenever we need it. If you don't have any on hand, white wine vinegar also works!
Dijon Mustard- My secret to the BEST salad dressing. I personally like to use old fashioned grainy dijon mustard as I find it tastes amazing in this salad dressing.
Spices/ Flavourings- garlic, salt and pepper are the only spices/ flavourings you need for this recipe!
Honey- A little touch of natural sweetness goes a long way in this salad dressing. I always like adding a bit of honey to my dressings to help compliment the flavours and make it a little less zesty.
How to make this copycat Costco quinoa salad
This salad is honestly so simple to make. The only real time needed for the preparation is the time spent chopping the vegetables.
- To start, prepare your quinoa according to package instructions. I recommend doing this ahead of time as you want the quinoa to be cool when you add it to the salad. As someone with zero patience when it comes to food I have also prepared it at the start of making this salad and just pop it in the freezer until I need it to help speed up the cooling process!
- Chop your veggies! This will be the most time consuming part. If you want to get other involved it will definitley speed up the process, otherwise turn on your faovurite podcast or song and get chopping! Another option is this fun vegetable chopped gadget I've been seeing all over Tiktok (it has AMAZING reviews).
- Once all your ingredients are chopped and ready add them to a large bowl with your quinoa.
- Prepare your dressing by whisking together the ingredients and adjusting to meet your taste preferences pour it over the salad.
- Voila! You're done!
Other easy salad recipes:
- Smashed chickpea salad
- Dill pickle salad
- Pesto chicken pasta salad
- Big mac salad bowls
- Street corn inspired summer salad
PS. I love seeing my recipes in action! If you decide to make this copycat Costco quinoa salad tag me on Instagram- @nourishedbynic or leave a comment below!
Copycat Costco Quinoa Salad
- 1 cup dry quinoa cooked according to package instructions
- 1 can (425g) brown lentils rinsed and drained
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes chopped
- 1 medium english cucumber diced
- ½ cup feta cheese crumbled
- ½ of one medium (about ½ cup) red onion chopped
- ½ of a bunch (about ¾ cup) parsley finely chopped
- 1 cup green kale leaves chopped (ensure the stems are removed)
- 1 medium red bell pepper diced
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 3 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1.5 medium lemons just the juice
- ½ tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard old fashioned or grainy
- 2 cloves garlic pressed
- salt and pepper to taste
- For best results- prepare the quinoa ahead of time and allow to cool in the fridge before starting the salad! (Another option is to prepare your quinoa at the beginning of the salad preparation and pop it in the freezer until you need it).
- For the salad- Add all the salad ingredients to a bowl and mix until combined.
- For the dressing- In a medium bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients. Adjust dressing to meet your taste preference. Once the dressing is complete, pour over the salad and toss until well combined.
- Store the leftovers in a sealed container for up to 5 days.