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Over the holidays, my brother-in-law’s girlfriend made this super amazing quinoa salad. I’m the first to admit that I’m not a fan of the superfood, but the way that L made it was absolutely wonderful. As in everyone enjoyed it, even my picky eaters. Why? Because it had cucumbers, feta, and tomatoes in it – and served cold, it was clearly the winner of the meal. I’ve made quinoa before, in my Instant Pot, but wasn’t a fan. Could I recreate this recipe? Read on to see how I made this Instant Pot Quinoa Salad with Feta and how you can customize it for yourself.
You’re going to need to make the quinoa first. While L made hers on her stove, I took the easier route. I made it in my Instant Pot first. I took rainbow quinoa (also known as tricolor quinoa) and added two cups of rainbow quinoa and two cups of water to my instant pot. Put it on manual for 1 minute and then let it sit for 10 minutes (natural pressure release – NPR). That means the pressure comes down naturally and you won’t have to worry about the steam coming out of the valve. Quinoa has protein, but for extra protein, I added a can of chickpeas. It tasted even better, but this way my daughter (who is a pescatarian, could have this for dinner and not worry about making anything else for her). After the quinoa cooled, I added chopped cucumbers, chopped grape tomatoes, reduced fat feta, chopped roasted red peppers, green onions, and chopped fresh parsley.
Instant Pot Rainbow Quinoa Salad
Rainbow (Tri-color Quinoa)
Reduced fat feta (or use full fat)
Jarred roasted red peppers
Green onions (Scallions),
Chopped fresh Italian parsley
Can of chickpeas (optional)
Balsamic Dressing or oil and vinegar dressing
Make your quinoa either in your instant pot or on the stove. To make it in your instant pot, add one cup quinoa to one cup water. I used two cups of quinoa to two cups of water and I ended up making A LOT of quinoa. For a family of 4 or 5, use one cup of quinoa and you’ll have this for two nights. Set on one minute and then do a natural pressure release (NPR) for 10 minutes – meaning don’t turn it right off and after 10 minutes, turn your instant pot off and make sure your sealing valve is all released and your pin has dropped. If it has not, turn your sealing valve to release any steam left and open your instant pot. If you don’t have an instant pot, follow the instructions on your quinoa package to make it. I always burn rice and quinoa, so my instant pot gets a lot of use!
Place your cooked quinoa in a big bowl and add all the other ingredients except your dressing. Mix it all together and top with the Italian Parsley last. If your family will not eat the Italian Parsley, leave it off.
To finish this, add in some light balsamic dressing or use olive oil and vinegar dressing. It will give the quinoa salad a little zing and really take it to the next level.
You can eat this as a complete protein – chick peas and the quinoa have protein or serve it as a hearty side dish – I served it to my husband and sons and I with chicken. It was sooo soo good.
Did you make this? Tag me on social media with #themamamaven and let me know!
Instant Pot Accessories I use:
Mini Mitts – worried about burning yourself with the steam valve? These mitts are perfect for protection.
Steamer Basket – just take the handle off and this is a terrific steamer basket for the Instant pot
Fat Daddio Pan – want to make a cheesecake or egg mold for my Easy Egg Salad, you’ll want this pan.
Silicone Egg Bites Mold – Want to make the Starbucks copycat egg bites? You need this mold. Comes in a group of two.
Instant Pot – this is the one I have.
Other great recipes: