Sunday, 8 December 2019

Quinoa, Chicken And Pineapple Salad

Quinoa - hard to say, and sometimes a bit hard to get right.  But it has nine essential amino acids, which is a good thing apparently:-)  So, eat it, eat it... as a certain dead pop singer may have almost said.  I'll tell you a secret though - Mr P. doesn't like quinoa!  There, you've heard it here first, so it may be quinoa out and couscous in.  We both like couscous, so this could easily be swapped out (is that the expression?), or you could use burghul/bulgur.

great for a hot summer's night

Do you know Lorraine Pascale, my friends?  I've been following her on Instagram for years.  She was a model, then became a TV cook who wrote cookbooks, and has done another twisty-turn in her life and become a life coach.  I got the idea for this recipe from a post of hers some time ago.  I've whacked in a few extras, as hers was a very simple dish.  But I like a bit of foodie bling - don't you? :-)  So treat this dish as a guideline, and put in the things that you enjoy eating.

Serves 4-6:


155g. (1 cup minus a couple of tablespoons) uncooked quinoa

500 mLs (2 cups) chicken stock or just-boiled water

250g. (8 oz) cooked chicken - grab a roast chook from the supermarket, or poach a couple of breasts

50g. (1/3 cup) sultanas or raisins

50g. (3/8 cup) pinenuts, toasted

80g. (a healthy half cup) cashews, toasted

100g. (3.5 oz) bocconcini or fetta, chopped

120g. (a chubby 4 oz) of fresh pineapple (out of a tin if you can't be bothered), chopped into chunks

1-2 red jalapeño chillies, sliced finely

chopped herbs - (I used parsley, chives and basil) - lots! or not, as you choose

juice of one lemon (2-3 tbs)

salt and pepper - half to one tsp sea salt; freshly ground pepper as you prefer - we like lots

1 tbs red wine vinegar

3-4 tbs olive oil or citrus-pressed oil


Place the quinoa and stock/water into a medium saucepan, and give it a good stir

Bring to the boil, turn down to a simmer and let it bubble away, covered, for about 15 minutes

Take off the heat, put a clean tea-towel over it and let it sit for five minutes

In the meantime, shred or chop up the chicken

Toast your nuts; chop the herbs, and chillies, and pineapple and cheese

Throw everything into a large salad bowl

In go the lemon juice, oil, seasoning and vinegar - aaand ... toss

Gives 4 hearty serves or 6 side serves


Nuts can be put into a small, dry frypan and allowed to toast over a low heat for a few minutes - watch carefully as they will burn all of a sudden, taking you by surprise and leaving you with dead, blackened husks :-(

toast your nuts in a dry pan

quinoa simmered for about 20 mins.

all tossed up and ready to eat

tasty and good for you

artwork © Sherry's Pickings


  1. What a great combo of flavours! Those toasted pine nuts are droolworthy!

  2. This looks delicious, pineapple is the surprise ingredient, very refreshing. I love burghul so I think I would go with that or mixed grains. So versatile. A delicious Christmas salad. Thanks Sherry

    1. thanks pauline. yep i love a bit of juicy pineapple in a salad - very refreshing!

  3. This quinoa chicken and pineapple salad is exactly my sort of thing. Lots of fresh healthly flavours here Sherry, I love it!

  4. Hehe wasn't it Weird Al that said Eat It? I like the sound of this even with the pineapple too!

    1. you're right lorraine. he did indeed say that. i had forgotten. yes if i remember rightly you are not a fan of fruit with meat:) but it does add a nice juicy bite here. cheers!

  5. Well your timing on this recipe is perfect as I just so happen to have half a bag of quinoa left in the pantry! The pineapple is a fun addition here - it would bring a wonderful bright flavor to the finished dish. Yum!

    1. hi david
      i know some people aren't fans of fruit and meat together but i always like the juxtaposition of sweet and savoury. cheers!

  6. This sounds delicious, and when you say pineapple - now you’re really talking. I’d sub the quinoa for couscous though.

  7. I treat most recipes as guidelines. :-) A weakness that sometimes gets me into trouble! Anyway, this looks good. I DO like quionoa so I'll be using that. :-)

    1. hi KR
      yes it's always tempting to put one's own spin on recipes isn't it? our most revered cook here in australia was margaret fulton who died recently at 95. she wisely said that a lot of the time you should stick to a recipe, as otherwise all you would do is put in the same herbs, spices etc that you put into every dish you make so everything ends up tasting the same. a very good point i thought...

  8. I am a quinoa fan and so is my husband, which is unusual because most of the time we have different taste when it comes to food. Your salad looks delicious.

    1. you can have all the quinoa gerlinde:-) thanks! nice to see you here.

  9. Well, we love quinoa (sorry Mr. P!) and this sounds easy and wonderful!

    1. I don't mind it, but i think we'll stick to wholemeal couscous in future!


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