Quinoa Salad with Fresh Herbs and Pomegranate Seeds

A Tale of Two Salads!

The first salad is a winner! It has complex levels of flavours from the fresh bite of mint and cilantro to the small explosions of pomegranate sweetness. And each mouthful is a study in textual contrasts among soft, chewy, and crunch. Nothing about this salad is expected or traditional. Plus it’s pretty too. Yum, I love it!

The second salad is a loser! It has too many tastes and textures plus really annoying pomegranate seeds. This story belongs to the spouse who grew up in an upright English Canadian family where dinner was a roast, potatoes, and peas. Not surprisingly, he prefers food that comes without surprises.

two eaters…two salads…the same serving bowl

Sometimes, I contemplate two kitchens, but honestly, the spouse does put up with a lot of culinary experimentation and manages to remain good-humoured—well, most of the time.

Besides, wouldn’t life be boring if we were all the same?

Makes 4 1-cup servings



  • 1 tbsp. oil
  • 2 tbsp. lemon juice
  • ½ tsp. kosher salt

Note to WWers: In adapting this salad, I cut the dressing in half to reduce the oil. You may feel you can’t live without more dressing. If you do double it, just remember to add 1 point per serving.


  • 2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup fresh parsley or coriander/cilantro, chopped (Parsley will make the salad taste a little “calmer.”)
  • ¼ cup mint leaves, chopped
  • ¼ cup red onion or 1 bunch scallion, chopped
  • Seeds of 1 pomegranate
  • ¼ cup pumpkin seeds


  1. In a small bowl, mix dressing ingredients. Put aside.
  2. Put the onion and fresh herbs in the small bowl of a food processor and chop as finely as possible.
  3. Remove seeds from the pomegranate. (If you’re not sure how to do this, check the video below.)
  4. In a large bowl, mix together all the salad ingredients.
  5. Add the salad dressing, mix, and refrigerate.

For Weight Watchers: What counts in this salad are the oil (3 points), quinoa (10 points), and pumpkin seeds (4 points). A 1-cup serving will be 4 points.


(This recipe is adapted from “Pomegranate and Pumpkin Seed Tabouli” in the October, 2012, edition of the Nutrition Action Health Letter, published by the Centre for Science in the Public Interest.)

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