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Warm Southwest Quinoa Bowl with Creamy Herb Dressing

servings: 4
Warm Southwest Quinoa Bowl with Creamy Herb Dressing

prep time


total time





Warm Southwest Quinoa Bowl with Creamy Herb Dressing

servings: 4
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • Kosher salt
  • 3 cups water, divided
  • 1 large shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup multicolored quinoa
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds), rinsed and pat dry
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup Hood® Country Style Cottage Cheese
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, plus more for serving
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, plus more for serving
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and sliced into thin strips
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, washed and drained
  • 2 cups packed arugula 



In a small bowl, whisk together the apple cider vinegar, sugar, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 cup of warm water. Add the sliced shallots and stir to combine. Let stand at room temperature for at least one hour. If making ahead, the mixture can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Rinse the quinoa under cold running water. Place in a small saucepan with 2 cups of water and 1/2 teaspoon salt, and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover and cook until the quinoa is tender and the water has absorbed, 15 to 20 minutes. Fluff quinoa with a fork then spread it on the prepared baking sheet to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, in a large sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium-high heat. Season both sides of the chicken breasts with 1/2 teaspoon salt and several turns of black pepper.  Add the chicken to the pan and cook until the underside is golden and crisp, about 7 minutes. Turn the chicken over and brown the other side, another 7 to 8 minutes. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan and finish cooking, until the internal juices run clear, about 20 more minutes. Remove the chicken to a clean plate to cool for about 5 minutes, then cut into strips or shred with a fork. Reserve the pan.

While the chicken cooks, make the dressing: In a medium bowl, combine the cottage cheese, 1 clove minced garlic, 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, parsley, dill, 1/4 teaspoon salt, several grinds black pepper, and 3 tablespoons of the shallot pickling liquid. Set aside.

Heat the same pan from the chicken to medium and add the remaining tablespoon of oil. Stir in the remaining clove of minced garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the red peppers strips and 1/8 teaspoon of salt. Continue to cook until the peppers are slightly soft, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the chili powder and onion powder, stirring to coat. Add the chickpeas and the remaining 1/4 cup of water and stir, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan, until the water is completely reduced. Immediately remove the pan from the heat.

To assemble: Divide the quinoa, pepper and chickpea mixture, chicken and arugula among 4 bowls. Top the arugula with pickled shallots. Spoon the dressing over the quinoa and serve with an additional pinch of dill and parsley on top.


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