It’s the contrasts in this Cilantro Lime Quinoa Salad with Sweet Potatoes that make it delightful: the sugary sweetness of the sweet potatoes, the tang of the lime juice, the earthy cilantro. Though it can be enjoyed hot or cold, we like it best hot.
Taco Tuesday became a regular event in our house a few years ago. Hard and soft shells. Ground beef with my homemade taco seasoning. Cheese, tomatoes, lettuce, homemade guacamole, salsas and hot sauce … And cilantro lime rice. Always the rice.
Whenever I’ve worried that having the same spread every Tuesday might get boring, someone has let me know that it’s not. It can’t. We all love it.
Even so, I like to switch it up a little. For instance, I recently tossed some tiny bits of boiled potatoes into our taco filling (my son Will declared it his new favorite) and loved it. Sometimes we trade the ground beef for shredded chicken tacos. And various veggie side dishes have hit the table too.
The rice isn’t immune from being switched up.
This Cilantro Lime Quinoa Salad with Sweet Potatoes is actually an entree itself. Filled with roasted sweet potatoes and shallots, protein-filled quinoa and a tangy cilantro-lime dressing, this makes a great lunch or dinner.
But it can also be a side dish for our favorite tacos. And then there are all these leftovers to enjoy. Imagine the leftovers.
This recipe comes from my new cookbook The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook. I am so excited to share it here as one of my sneak preview recipes (did you see the Teriyaki Salmon and Avocado Bowl I shared last week??). The recipes in my book have short ingredients lists and are easy to make. They are designed for time-stretched folks who want to eat well, but don’t have enough time for complicated or time-consuming meals. It’s available for pre-order now on Amazon or ask at your local independent bookstore (local folks, The Briar Patch is accepting pre-orders too!).
It’s the contrasts in this salad that make it delightful: the sugary sweetness of the sweet potatoes, the tang of the lime juice, the earthy cilantro. Though it can be enjoyed hot or cold, we like it best hot.
- 1 sweet potato (about ¾ pound), cut into ½-inch dice
- 1 shallot , quartered and roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- Ground black pepper
- 1 cup quinoa , thoroughly rinsed
- 2 cups water
- Zest and juice of 1 lime
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Spread the diced sweet potatoes and shallot in an 8-by-8-inch square glass baking dish. Drizzle with the olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Bake for 20 minutes. Stir well. Return to the oven and bake for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, until the sweet potatoes are fork tender.
Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan over high heat, stir together the quinoa and water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook for 15 minutes, or until the water is absorbed. Turn off the heat and let sit for 5 minutes.
In a large serving bowl, stir together the quinoa, sweet potatoes, and shallots. Add the lime juice, lime zest, and cilantro. Stir well.
Taste, season as needed with additional salt and pepper, and serve.
Sarah Walker Caron is a cookbook author, freelance writer and founder of Sarah’s Cucina Bella. Her latest cookbook is The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook, published by Rockridge Press, which focuses on quick, easy, from-scratch cooking for busy people. A single mother to two kids in middle school, Sarah loves nightly family dinners, juicy tomatoes plucked fresh from the vine and lazy days on the beach. She also adores reading and traveling.