This refreshing grain-based salad not only tastes yummy and energizing, but it looks beautiful too - it’s like edible confetti!

Take some stress out of your week by making a big batch of quinoa to use in multiple meals throughout your week. Quinoa is so versatile you can enjoy it as a breakfast porridge, turn it into crispy fritters or enjoy it as the base of a salad. Quinoa is considered a whole grain though it’s technically a seed and unlike other grains, quinoa contains all essential amino acids making it a complete protein. Danielle’s colorful recipe is not only full of phytonutrients, natural compounds of plants shown to prevent disease but is also fun to prepare and eat with your family! 

Refreshing Mango Quinoa Salad


9 cups

Cook Time

12 min

Total Time

30-40 min

  • 2 cups dry white quinoa (6 cups cooked)
  • 1c mango, diced (~2 medium)
  • 1c cucumber, diced (2 snacking or 1 medium)
  • 1c red bell pepper, diced (1 large)
  • ½ c green bell pepper, diced (~½ large)
  • 2 Tbs. fresh mint, minced
  • 1 Tbs. scallion, minced (2 green parts only)
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • ¼ to ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ to 1 tsp Celtic sea salt

Juice from ½ lime (optional)

  1. In mesh strainer, rinse quinoa until water runs clear.
  2. In medium-sized pot, add rinsed quinoa and 4 cups of filtered water. Bring to boil, drop to simmer and cover. Cook for 12 minutes. Lift lid and rest double layer paper towel atop put, replace lid. Remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes. Paper towel can absorb excess liquid. Add to large bowl and let cool in fridge. 
  3. While cooking quinoa, dice and mince vegetables, fruit and herbs. Please note, if feeding baby using BLW, put aside one large strip each of cucumber and mango (approximately 1” x 4”). You may also choose to cut up some sticks of cucumber, mango and pepper for your toddler. Add to quinoa bowl the olive oil, minced mint and scallions. Mix well. Remove portion for any baby feeding with BLW method. 
  4. Add all remaining ingredients to quinoa  mixture, except salt and lime, including diced mango, red and green pepper, cucumber and minced shallot. Mix well. Remove any portion for baby feeding with conventional pureed method. 
  5. Add ¼ tsp of salt and mix well. Taste and add more salt in ⅛ tsp. increments. 

*If serving a baby using BLW, see directions and serving tips before dicing all vegetables and fruit.

For the ages

For Babies: BLW

With a few minor adjustments, this delicious quinoa salad can be enjoyed by your little one!

Portion Size:

1 - 2 tablespoons of quinoa and one strip each of cucumber and mango (approximately 1” x 4”)


quinoa mixture, large strips of cucumber and mango 

Serving Tip(s):

In a mini mat, serve dime-sized dollops of quinoa mixture for little ones to eat with a tiny spoon or a ¼ cup mound of quinoa if baby is eating with hands. Add the large strips of cucumber and mango to mat too. Let your baby eat as much as he wants, adding more dollops to the bowl as needed. 

For Babies: Traditional

 A fun way to expose your baby to the flavor of many vegetables.

Portion Size:

1 - 2 tablespoons


quinoa mixture with diced veggies and fruit, desired liquid

Serving Tip(s):

In a food processor, puree ¼ to ½ cup of quinoa mixture with diced veggies and fruit and desired liquid (such as breast milk or water) until desired consistency is reached for your baby. Serve in a tiny bowl and let baby eat as much as she desires. 

For Toddlers

The many colors found in this recipe will both surprise and entice your toddler at the table!

Portion Size:

3 - 4 tablespoons


quinoa mixture with diced veggies and fruit, salt and lime juice if using

Serving Tip(s):

Try serving this quinoa dish multiple ways to allow your toddler to find something he likes on the table. In a happy mat, serve plain quinoa mixture (without diced veggies and fruit) in one section, quinoa mixed with diced veggies and fruit in another section, and finger-sized sticks of cucumbers, green pepper and mango in another section. Let your toddler eat as much or as little of anything served for the best eating experience. 

For Grown-Ups

This quinoa salad is light and energizing. You can enjoy it as a main dish, atop leafy greens or alongside other favorite mains. 

Portion Size:

½ to 1 cup


 quinoa mixture with diced veggies and fruit, salt and lime juice if using

Serving Tip(s):

Prepare quinoa by mixing quinoa, diced veggies, lime juice and salt to taste as directed in the recipe. Serve quinoa chilled. Add salt to taste preference and extra squeezes of lime as desired.

Happy Eating!

Danielle Shea-Tan, MS, CHHC

Functional Family Nutritionist

Danielle is passionate about helping families ditch processed foods and start making real, wholesome food that is both simple and delicious. She blows our minds with fascinating "nutritional nuggets" about foods and herbs. Danielle also recently wrote a book called "52 Small Changes for the Family," an inspiring guide that helps families make one small change each week to improve their overall happiness and health. You can learn more about Danielle at 

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