Something about this combination of crunchy lettuce, veggies, and cashews with soft quinoa and edamame is so good. Then, when it’s tossed in a simple, three-ingredient sesame dressing, it goes from good to bowl-licking amazing. It’s everything you love about a classic Chinese Chicken Salad, but vegan, with no added sugar, and made with simple, whole food ingredients.
This salad is an awesome balance of flavors and nutrients. It’s light and fresh from the raw veggies, but still feels like a full meal from the protein-rich quinoa and edamame. Red cabbage is definitely a star and has recently become one of my favorite ingredients to use in salads. Not only is the color so pretty, it adds an awesome crunch that pairs perfectly with asian flavors. Toasted cashews are another frequently used ingredient in my kitchen. They add a subtle sweetness and creaminess that contrasts so well with the sesame dressing.
This salad is perfect for busy days, as it’s ready in under 20 minutes! To make it even faster, try keeping toasted cashews and cooked quinoa on hand, which makes this recipe easy as throwing everything into a bowl and tossing! Im pretty addicted to the sesame dressing, which I love to make a big batch of and keep throughout the week. It packs so much flavor with the nutty sesame oil and salty tamari, and is great to stir into grains, cauliflower rice, or stir fries!
- 3 cups chopped romaine
- 1 cup chopped red cabbage
- ¼ cup chopped chopped carrots
- ¼ cup chopped bell pepper
- ⅓ cup shelled edamame
- ¼ cup cashews (halves or whole)
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 1 tbsp tamari
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place the cashews on a baking sheet and roast until browned, about 8-10 minutes.
- Place the quinoa in a saucepan with ⅔ cup water over medium-high heat. Once the mixture begins to boil, turn the heat down to low and let the quinoa simmer for 12 minutes. When the quinoa is done, take the lid off, fluff the quinoa with a fork, then let it sit with a paper towel between the pot and the lid for another minute. After this, if you're making the quinoa ahead of time, just let it cool then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. If you're making it to eat now, put the cooked quinoa in a bowl and let it sit in the freezer to cool while you finish prepping the rest of the ingredients.
- While the quinoa is cooking, chop the carrots, bell pepper, red cabbage, and romaine and place in a large mixing bowl.
- Make the dressing by stirring together the sesame oil, tamari, and lemon juice in a small glass or bowl.
- When all the ingredients are ready, add the quinoa, most of the cashews, edamame, and dressing to the mixing bowl with the veggies, and toss everything together. Serve with an extra sprinkling of cashews and enjoy!
This is a great salad to take to go, just store the dressing separately, then toss immediately before eating.