This salad with beans, quinoa, rice, and pecans is a hearty, filling meal. Cucumber and pepper are also added to a fresh garden salad for a cool, crunchy lunch or dinner. I know I like a salad for lunch, but I don’t want to feel hungry again a few hours later. Thanks to the filling beans with protein and fiber and unsaturated fat from the nuts and olive oil this combo can keep you satisfied until dinner. One serving provides approximately 8 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber (according to the nutrition estimate from Spoonacular).
The homemade lemon-herb dressing takes just a few minutes to make and goes well with the fresh ingredients in the salad. I suggest packing the dressing in a separate container if you are taking this to work for lunch, so the lettuce doesn’t wilt.
Lettuce mix – this makes the salad light and fresh, unlike a salad of just beans and more solid vegetables. You can use any lettuce or spring mix you like. I chose one out of a bag for convenience.
Red beans – I selected cooked red beans for this salad, but you can use any beans you like. I rinsed a cup of dried red beans and soaked them in a container with a lot of water overnight. Then I cooked them in an Instant Pot with 3 cups of water on high pressure for 12 minutes, and let the pressure release naturally (check the directions for beans that came with your pressure cooker – I like to go a little over the recommended time for soaked beans to make sure they are soft.). Then I rinsed them again.
This makes more than needed for this recipe. Extra freeze well and can be used for tostadas, tacos, chili, and more. Or for convenience, look for low sodium canned beans.
Quinoa and rice: I tend to make a combo of quinoa and rice instead of just quinoa to use in salads, tacos, and as a base for stir-fry meals. I prefer this mix instead of plain quinoa because it doesn’t roll around and spill out of things as much! I make a bath in a rice cooker and then can use it in a few dishes, or store it in the freezer after a couple of days for convenience. Feel free to use just quinoa, just rice, or other grains you enjoy.
Pecans – a topping of pecans adds a delicious crunch to this recipe. In addition to containing many vitamins and minerals, they may offer some health benefits related to weight management and diabetes control (watching the portion size, of course). Learn more from this article about the health benefits of pecans from WebMD.
How to Make Salad with Beans, Quinoa, Rice, and Pecans
This is a really easy meal as long as you have the beans and quinoa/rice made and ready. Just chop up your vegetables. Divide the lettuce mix into 2 bowls. Top each with half of the red beans, cooked quinoa with rice, cucumbers, yellow bell peppers, and pecans.
How to Make Lemon-Herb Dressing
In a small bowl, mix the whisk, lemon juice, olive oil, basil, lemon zest, Dijon mustard, maple syrup. salt, and black pepper with a fork or a small whisk. Drizzle the dressing on top of the salads. Of course, you could also use a premade lemon-herb dressing (note that the sodium will likely be higher), or a different vinaigrette style dressing, like balsamic vinaigrette.
Other Salad Topping Ideas
Feel free to vary the ingredients based on your preference and what you have in the house. Try avocado, red onion, corn, black beans, walnuts, green onions, artichoke hearts, or more!
What to Eat with This Salad
Enjoy this salad with beans with a piece of fruit, whole grain bread, or a bowl of soup.
Related Recipes You May Enjoy
- Vegan BLT Salad with Avocado Dressing
- Fresh Tomato Lime Salad Dressing with Cilantro
- Pumpkin Vinaigrette Salad Dressing
- Easy Tahini Salad Dressing Recipe
Salad with Beans, Quinoa, Rice, and Pecans and Lemon Herb Dressing
Salad with Beans, Quinoa, Rice, and Pecans
- 3 cups lettuce mix with carrots and red cabbage
- ½ cup cooked red beans
- ½ cup cooked quinoa and rice blend
- ½ cup chopped, peeled cucumber
- ½ cup chopped yellow bell pepper
- 2 tablespoon pecan halves
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh basil and oregano
- ½ teaspoon lemon zest
- ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon maple syrup
- dash salt
- dash black pepper
- Divide the lettuce mix into 2 bowls. Top each with half of the red beans, cooked quinoa with rice, cucumbers, yellow bell peppers, and pecans.
- In a small bowl, mix the whisk, lemon juice, olive oil, basil, lemon zest, Dijon mustard, maple syrup. salt, and black pepper with a fork or a small whisk. Drizzle the dressing on top of the salads.
Have you tried making this salad with beans, quinoa, rice, and pecans with lemon-herb dressing? If so, please leave a note in the comments with your feedback.
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