We’re gearing up for summer in my household: I’m brainstorming fruity recipes and barbecue menus, the boyfriend is preparing to plant his garden, and Phoebe is busy shedding her winter coat like whoa. Unfortunately, Michigan weather has other plans, because yesterday…it snowed. It didn’t accumulate on the ground, but still, you don’t expect to wake up in mid-May to the sight and sound of icy snowflakes hitting your window!
Even though I apparently shouldn’t put my thick socks into storage just yet, I can still eat like it’s summer, and today’s recipe is one that I’m going to be enjoying on repeat all summer long: chipotle-peach quinoa salad! The chipotle-peach vinaigrette offers an enticing blend of sweet and spicy, with a fruity, smoky taste that reminds me of a summertime bonfire on the beach. You can easily adjust the heat of the dressing by adding more or fewer chipotles, and in fact, I recommend tasting the dressing as you add the chipotles, since they can vary in size. To complement the aromatic peach flavor of the dish—there’s a whole peach in the vinaigrette and a second one diced up in the salad—I added some salty cotija cheese, as well as the power couple of summer veggies, corn and zucchini.
It’s hard for me to capture in words how intoxicatingly delicious this chipotle-peach quinoa salad is, but when I first took a bite, I actually closed my eyes and thought, “Oh wow, this is SO. GOOD.” In addition to its wow factor in the flavor department, this quinoa salad also wins points for its speediness (it comes together in half an hour or less) and for its dietary restriction friendliness (it’s naturally vegetarian and gluten-free, but if you skip the cotija, it becomes vegan). Conversely, if you add some shredded chicken, you’ve got a full meal in one dish!
I’m sharing the recipe for this chipotle-peach quinoa salad on my friend (and former college classmate) Lauren’s blog, so head over to Free Your Fork for the details! Lauren’s posts prove time and time again that eating healthy doesn’t have to mean sacrificing flavor, so be sure to check out her recipes for some seriously droolworthy noms.
I’m also sharing this post at the following link parties: Recipe of the Week, The Wednesday Showcase, Foodie FriDIY, and Fiesta Friday.
Rahul @samosastreetblog says
What a gorgeous salad, Mara. I’m loving all the flavor combinations you have going here- the spicy, the sweet, the crispy. You’ve covered everything in this dish
Thanks, Rahul! I’m pretty much obsessing over the sweet/spicy combo!
Lauren @ Free Your Fork says
So much nutritious, bright, summery goodness in one heaping bowl! Cannot wait to try out this spiced up sweet peach vinaigrette you’ve concocted here, Mara!
PS – thanks so much again for guest posting!!!
Thanks so much, Lauren, and thank you for having me! I hope you love this as much as I do when you try it 🙂
Wow! The sweet and spicy combination of this salad is amazing!!
Thanks! I’m going to be putting this chipotle-peach vinaigrette on EVERYTHING this summer!
Another fabulous recipe! I love the idea of peaches and chipotle. Can’t wait to try it. #recipeoftheweek.
Chipotles and fruit go together SO well. I hope you get a chance to try this soon!
Trying to decide which part of this salad I love the most and it’s such a toss-up! Amazing flavor combination here and it does scream summer! (Even if the skies are opening up with snow – yikes – so sorry!) Pinning and can’t wait to give this a try!
Thanks, Kathryn! Let me know what you think if you try it! And thankfully the weather has warmed up since the weekend…summer feels like it’s on its way 🙂
yummm, looks good. Thanks for sharing at #FoodieFriDIY
Thanks, Chris! I hope you get a chance to try it.
Julie is Hostess At Heart says
Mara this looks amazing!
Thanks, Julie! I’m glad it caught your eye.
This salad definitely has that WOW factor Mara! Thanks for bringing it to Fiesta Friday! 🙂
Fabulous Fare Sisters
Thanks, Linda, and thank you for hosting this week!
My pleasure! Have a wonderful weekend 🙂
Life Diet Health says
This looks yummy but I’d have to make it a chipotle-nectarine quinoa salad as I really don’t like the furry skin of peaches! 😛 I guess I could crumble over some of my vegan feta too 🙂 Thanks for sharing at Fiesta Friday.
Nectarines would work just as well, I imagine! Let me know what you think if you try it 🙂
Life Diet Health says
Will do 🙂 thank you. Have a great weekend.
Love the flavors in this salad! Another recipe to try with my quinoa. Thanks for sharing!
Thanks, Suchitra! I love how versatile quinoa is. I hope you get a chance to try this!
Awesome salad, especially the chipotle-peach vinaigrette. I love the way you combine exciting flavours to make delicious dishes. Thanks for sharing, Mara 🙂
Thanks so much, Ahila! I’m glad you like the idea of the chipotle-peach vinaigrette, since I’ve got a few more recipes planned with it 🙂
Oh I feel you with the shedding, my cat leave half of herself on the sofa overtime she goes up. But that salad look fantastic, love the sweet-spicy-combination 🙂
Haha yes, we joke that every time we vacuum, we collect half a dog from the carpet! Thanks for stopping by!
Kathy @ Beyond the Chicken Coop says
I have been looking for more ways to use quinoa. This time of year all I want to eat are salads. This looks like a perfect salad to make on the weekend and then take in my lunch to school!
I applaud you for your healthy inclinations! All I want to eat this time of year is potato salad. This will make a great lunch to take to work – I hope you get a chance to try it!
What a profusion of color and flavor. Love this chiptole peach quinoa salad.
Thanks, Loretta! I really love all the colors in this salad.
Ai | Ai made it for you says
Yum! I love fruit in savory dishes. I’ll definitely try this when peaches come out in the summer 😀
Me too – I especially love making fruity vinaigrettes! Let me know what you think if you make this 🙂
Jeff the Chef says
Peach and chipotle – what a great combination!
Thanks, Jeff! It’s almost like peaches and chipotles were made for each other!
Ooh yum, that sounds delicious! Love all the flavors in there and so good for you too!
It’s always a delight when healthy and delicious intersect, as they do here. Thanks, Caroline!
Patty K says
OH MY WORD!!! So much flavor in one salad! Quinoa. Peach. Cotija. Chipotle. I’m dying over here!
I’m so glad this caught your eye! It’s already one of my favorites, so I really hope you get a chance to try it!
What a lovely and summery salad! I never thought of chipotle and and peach but it sounds lovely! 🙂
Thanks, Petra! The sweet and spicy combination is magnificent – definitely give it a try if you get a chance!
Debra C. says
Just love the sweet/hot/quinoa combo you’ve put together here – what a delicious recipe! Thanks for sharing with us at #FoodieFriDIY! Wanted to pop by and let you know I’ll be featuring your recipe this week – stop by to check it out!
Thanks so much, Debra! I’m flattered that this caught your eye. I’ll be sure to stop by!
Cake Lover says
We had this recipe along with a green salad and some chicken apple sausage. You know how they say we should eat “colorfully”? Well, this was amazing. The peaches really gave the salad a fresh and distinct flavor. The quinoa salad was just as tasty as cold leftovers, and the chipotle-peach sauce was also delicious as a salad dressing. Another winner recipe! Thanks!
I’m so glad you enjoyed this! I’ve been meaning to try the dressing on salad, but you beat me to it – that’s great to know that it pairs nicely with greens as well as with quinoa. Thanks for the feedback 🙂