Here is a tasty and healthy lunch option some of you might have seen on popular websites. When it’s time to enjoy a lunch salad, give the jar a little shake, then pour onto your plate.

The result is a tasty, healthy salad, crisp and flavorful, not soggy. Be creative and add chick peas, tuna or chicken breast in the mid layer. Salud!

Quinoa Garden 

Salad in a Jar 

(Inspired by Natural Grocers)

Serves: 4 large or 8 small servings

Ingredients

2 cups water

1 cup Organic Quinoa, rinsed

1 package tempeh

4 tablespoons Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided

2 stalks organic celery

1 pound organic broccolini

1 organic shallot

 Juice from medium organic lemon (about 3 tablespoons)

 Zest, juice from ½ an orange

2 teaspoons Maple Syrup

Sea Salt and Organic Ground Black Pepper, to taste

4 cups Baby Spinach

1⁄2 cup Dried Cranberries

1 cup crumbled dairy or vegan feta

1⁄3 cup nuts of choice

Directions

In a small saucepan, bring water to a boil. Add the quinoa, cover, reduce heat to low, and cook for 20 minutes, or until quinoa is soft. Remove from heat and uncover; fluff with a fork and let cool for about 10 minutes. Quinoa can be warm, but not hot before going in jars. 

Proceed with recipe while quinoa cooks: Slice tempeh into 1/8-inch thick slices crosswise. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil, swirl to coat, and add tempeh slices. Sizzle for about 2 minutes each side, or until crispy. Place cooked tempeh on a plate and set aside. If tempeh will not fit in one batch, crisp in two batches.

While waiting for quinoa to cook/cool, dice celery and dump into a large bowl. Remove the head from the broccoli stalks and set aside. Peel the stalks, remove tough end, dice, and add to celery. Give it a stir or two to mix up the celery and broccoli stalk. Break/chop broccoli heads into bite-sized florets.

Peel and mince the shallot until you have about 4 teaspoons’ worth. Dump into a small bowl. Add remaining olive oil, lemon juice, orange zest, orange juice, and maple syrup, whisking together until combined. Add salt and pepper as needed for taste.

For assembly

Divide ingredients evenly among four quart-sized wide-mouth mason jars, starting with the dressing (about 2 tablespoons). Layer in celery/broccoli stalk (about ½ cup), quinoa (about a heaping ½ cup), tempeh (about 4-5 slices), broccoli florets (about ½ cup), spinach (1 cup), cranberries (about 2 tablespoons), feta (about a ¼ cup), and top with nuts. Seal tightly with the lid and store in the refrigerator up to four days. When ready to eat, double check that lid is on tight. Shake vigorously until the dressing is incorporated throughout and ingredients are mixed up.