Quinoa & Roasted Vegetable Salad with Brazil Nut Pesto

(Gluten Free, Meat Free, Dairy Free | Paleo-Friendly) I’m just going to say it. This recipe is awesome. I mean, of course I think this about all the recipes I put up, but this one is extra yummy! What I love about it is that you can literally throw all your week’s leftover veggies into this dish and come out with something really tasty. Also, it gets extra bonus points for being delicious hot or cold –AKA packed lunch anyone?!

Ingredients for Roasted Vegetable Salad

  • Roughly chop any vegetables you like- the more colours, the better! I used the suggestions from Hemsley Hemsley:
  • 4 large carrots, roughly chopped
  • 1 large red pepper, roughly chopped
  • 2 handfuls of cherry tomatoes or 4 large tomatoes, halved
  • 1 large onion (red is best for colour), roughly chopped
  • 3 large beetroots, well scrubbed and chopped into small chunks or little wedges –as they take the longest to cook
  • 1 tbsp ghee or coconut oil
  • A handful of fresh herbs such as thyme, rosemary or 2 tbsp mixed dried herbs
  • Fresh leaves, such as rocket (arugula), lambs lettuce and watercress, to serve (I used rocket (arugula) and spinach)

Ingredients for Quinoa

  • 250 ml water or vegetable stock
  • 250g (2 cups) quinoa

Ingredients for Brazil Nut Pesto

  • 12 Brazil nuts
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 3 large handfuls of fresh basil (stalks and all if you’re using a strong blender)
  • 300 ml extra virgin olive oil (I tend to use closer to 200ml olive to make it a bit thicker, since 300ml is a lot!)
  • 4 tbsp lemon juice or 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar


  1. Preheat the oven to 200C (390F).
  2. Lay the roughly chopped vegetables in a single layer on a large roasting tray, sprinkle with salt and pepper and add your dollops of ghee or coconut oil. Scatter the herbs over this mixture.
  3. Roast for 30-40 minutes or until the veg is tender (pierce with a knife to check). Halfway through the roasting time, use a wooden spatula to turn the veggies.
  4. Meanwhile, make the pesto. Blitz everything together in a food processor or with a blender (the more nuts you add, the thicker and creamier your pesto will be, but if you want it thinner, add more oil and lemon juice). Alternatively, grab a sharp knife and finely chop the garlic, basil and nuts, then whisk with the olive oil and lemon juice. Season to taste.
  5. For the quinoa, follow these steps:
    • Using a fine mesh strainer, drain and rinse the quinoa until the water is clear and without foam.
    • Bring the 250ml water or vegetable stock to a medium-high heat.
    • Add the quinoa and stir once. Continue to cook on a medium simmer until tender –about 12 minutes.
    • Take off the heat and leave to stand for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork before serving.
  6. Combine the quinoa and roasted veg in a big serving bowl, toss in your pesto (or just sprinkle on top at end) and the fresh salad leaves.

Tip: Store any leftover pesto in your fridge and top random goodies throughout the week with it to jazz them up! This pesto is basically delicious on everything, but I really like it on my eggs.

Let’s just re-live the tastiness one more time with this picture…mmmmm.

Quinoa Roasted Vegetable Salad with Brazil Nut Pesto

Source | Hemsley Hemsley, ‘The Art of Eating Well’

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