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quinoa salad in a bowl with honey orange dressing

Cranberry Pecan Quinoa Salad with Honey-Orange Dressing

A healthy cranberry pecan quinoa salad with a lovely light honey orange dressing! A wonderful gluten free and easily vegan fall salad! 
Course Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Healthy, Lunch, Quinoa, Salad, Side Dish, Summer
Keyword pecan quinoa salad
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 5 servings
Calories 260 kcal
Author Monique Volz of Ambitious Kitchen


  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans
  • For the dressing:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 medium orange, juiced
  • zest of 1/2 an orange
  • 1 tablespoon honey (or sub agave nectar to keep vegan)
  • 1/2 teaspoon tumeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place pecans on ungreased baking sheet and toast for 6-8 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool. While they're toasting you can start cooking your quinoa.
  2. To cook quinoa: Rinse quinoa with cold water in mesh strainer. In a medium saucepan, bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add in quinoa and bring mixture to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and let simmer for 15 minutes or until quinoa has absorbed all of the water. Remove from heat and fluff quinoa with fork; place in large bowl and set aside to cool for about 10 minutes.
  3. To make dressing: Whisk together olive oil, apple cider vinegar, orange juice, orange zest, honey, tumeric, thyme.
  4. Pour the dressing all over quinoa and add cranberries. Stir to combine. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow flavors to absorb into quinoa. 
  5. Add salt and pepper to taste. Before serving fold in toasted pecans. Makes 5 servings; a little over 1/2 cup each.
Nutrition Facts
Cranberry Pecan Quinoa Salad with Honey-Orange Dressing
Amount Per Serving (1 g)
Calories 260 Calories from Fat 90
% Daily Value*
Fat 10g15%
Carbohydrates 39.1g13%
Fiber 3.8g16%
Sugar 13.3g15%
Protein 5.6g11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.