Damn Delicious

Black Bean Quinoa Salad

A light and healthy quinoa salad tossed in a refreshing orange vinaigrette, chockfull of protein and fiber!

Black Bean Quinoa Salad - A light and healthy quinoa salad tossed in a refreshing orange vinaigrette, chockfull of protein and fiber!

Greetings from Cabo! After a very emotional departure with Butters, a 4AM wake up call, and spending 10 hours at the airport, we finally made it! So please forgive me if this post is a bit erratic and short. The gorgeous beach view and the last 3 glasses of margaritas are a bit distracting.

Black Bean Quinoa Salad - A light and healthy quinoa salad tossed in a refreshing orange vinaigrette, chockfull of protein and fiber!

Now I should tell you that I clearly did not plan for this trip at all. I tried to – I really did. I even planned a strict “diet” for months prior to the trip, but that didn’t pan out as I hoped as Jason and I gorged on chicken and waffles, Korean BBQ crinkle fries, and tater tot breakfast skillets.

Black Bean Quinoa Salad - A light and healthy quinoa salad tossed in a refreshing orange vinaigrette, chockfull of protein and fiber!

So like the caprese avocado salad I posted the other day, this was one of the last and final attempts for clean eating before our trip. And I must say, it was the most glorious protein-rich salad I could ask for. Loaded with tons of fresh veggies and a refreshing orange vinaigrette, I gorged on this for 3 days straight!

Black Bean Quinoa Salad - A light and healthy quinoa salad tossed in a refreshing orange vinaigrette, chockfull of protein and fiber!

And honestly, if all quinoa salads were like this, dieting would never be an issue.

Black Bean Quinoa Salad

A light and healthy quinoa salad tossed in a refreshing orange vinaigrette, chockfull of protein and fiber!

10 minutes10 minutes


  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 large navel oranges, cut into segments
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
  • 1 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup canned corn kernels, drained
  • 1/3 cup chopped red onion
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves

For the orange vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 1 tablespoon sugar


  1. In a large saucepan of 2 cups water, cook quinoa according to package instructions; set aside.
  2. To make the vinaigrette, whisk together olive oil, apple cider vinegar, orange juice, orange zest and sugar in a small bowl; set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, combine quinoa, oranges, bell pepper, jalapeno, black beans, corn, onion and cilantro. Pour the vinaigrette on top of the salad and gently toss to combine.
  4. Serve immediately.

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Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Servings Per Container 4

Amount Per Serving
Calories 438.8 Calories from Fat 151.2
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 16.8g 26%
Saturated Fat 2.3g 12%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 249.7mg 10%
Total Carbohydrate 62.6g 21%
Dietary Fiber 10.1g 40%
Sugars 16.5g
Protein 11.7g 23%

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.


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  1. Rated 5 out of 5

    This recipe was great. Would I be right in assuming you can make additional dressing to refrigerate and use day the next day? Thanks 

  2. Rated 5 out of 5

    I made this recipe without the dressing. I cooked the quinoa in chicken broth and sauteed the onions, peppers, corn and black beans. I then added the cooked quinoa and when it was done, I added the cilantro. It was delicious!! Definitely making it again.

  3. Rated 5 out of 5


  4. This is really yummy! I love quinoa and am always looking for new recipes, I will definately make this again!

  5. Do you let the quinoa cool before you add the dressing and other ingredients or do you serve it warm? 

  6. Made this last night for a potluck dinner and it was delicious! Doubled the recipe, and still have some left for today.  The doubled dressing completely absorbed without being wet as some were saying. I will leave out the sugar next time in the dressing though, I like it a bit more acidic. With the sweetness from the oranges and juice I don’t think it’s needed. Perhaps a pinch of salt instead.

  7. Made it. Used 1 orange only. Very sweet. Too sweet.
    Leave sugar out next time if I make it again

  8. Made this exactly as written, except I didn’t have cilantro so added some coriander.  I agree that the colors of this salad are just beautiful, but I wish I didn’t use colored quinoa.  Next time, using just the white. I also love the orange vinaigrette and will use for other salads.  Yum.

    As for the salad; it is DELICIOUS, but too moist and I didn’t even add two whole oranges.  Hmm, any suggestions.  Believe me, I am exacting, so ti wasn’t that I used two much of the liquid ingredients and there was no leftover cooking liquid in the quinoa.  I guess I will not add all the dressing next time because I am definitely makeing this again.  I love it.

  9. I loved this.  Doubled the recipe for a potluck picnic.  Added a big can of mandarin oranges in addition to a large orange.  I actually think the salad was better the next day after all the flavors mingled with the dressing!

  10. Is the nutritional information based on the entire salad or is it broken down into a serving size?

  11. Have my quinoa ready,  a saucepan of beans simmering away with an orange etc., added  3 big whole Jamaican Allspice peppercorns, should give an extra special flavour.

  12. Do you think I could sub fresh basil for cilantro?

  13. What did u make the quinoa with? Just plan water or did u use vegetable broth? Just wonder what would be the best taste. 
    Thank you for sharing! 

    • You can use water or chicken/vegetable broth – it’s completely up to you, although I personally prefer the latter.

  14. Your recipes all look and sound delicious and I hope to be making a lot of them, even though I HATE to cook.

    I know this is late, but, what happened to Butters?

  15. this is so good!!! and it’s such a pretty salad…all the colors really make it appealing to the eye. I added lime to mine and didn’t really need all of the dressing. I follow your blog and have made several recipes! thanks so much!!!

  16. My first time to cook/make quinoa salad, it was a huge success!!! With some modifications since I don’t have two of the ingredients in my pantry. Anyway, after rinsing the quinoa I cooked it with a can of low sodium chicken stock. Here’s my substitutions:
    black beans – used garbanzo beans.
    Orange – clementines
    fresh cilantro -flat leaf parsley

    I omitted the jalapeño pepper for the kiddos. But I added a pinch of freshly chopped mint leaves to boost the flavor a notch. Lastly, I also added 3/4 tsp of fine sea salt and freshly grounded black pepper to the vinaigrette.

    Even with all my changes, I really love the recipe! Thank you so much for sharing it.

  17. Made this today and it is amazing! Love it! My only question is if you should refrigerate the dressing separately instead of tossing it together beforehand? Are the leftovers still as good if already tossed together?

    • You can keep them separate or leave them as is. I actually prefer the latter because the flavors really meld as they sit in the fridge overnight.

  18. What a GREAT salad! I made it for company last night and I have to tell you … it’s tops!!! The only alteration I made was I used the whole can of black beans instead of just one cup. Loved the dressing. Loved the orange segments. Loved the whole recipe. Thanks so much for posting it.

    I’ve heard people say they don’t always have good luck with their Quinoa prep. I have good luck always so if I share what I do .. maybe it will help. I buy a 4 lb (1815 gram) bag of “truRoots” Quinoa from Costco. I use 1 2/3 Cup of water, 1 Cup of Quinoa, 1/2 tsp salt. I bring it to a boil, give it a bit of a stir, cover the pot, turn the heat down to simmer and and cook for 15 minutes. Take it off the heat. Take off the lid (the water will be gone) and give it a bit of a fluff up and leave it to cool. It should be perfect! Hope this helps.

  19. I loved this salad!! I had it warm last night for dinner and cold for lunch! It makes great leftovers!!

  20. Would this be fine in the fridge for a couple of hours before serving? I have a huge group coming this weekend and need to make a lot of recipes.

  21. Can you freeze this after it is all cooked

    • Unfortunately, I cannot answer this with certainty as I have never tried freezing this myself – there were no leftovers left to freeze! I recommend using your best judgment for freezing and reheating.

  22. This salad looks delicious, not sure what cilantro is or if I can get it here in the UK but will have a look for it as I’d love to make this! If I can’t find it would it spoil the salad if I left it out? Or is there something else I could use instead?

  23. Just made it and it’s amazing! I made 2 cups cooked quinoa because it sort of disappeared with all the rest of the ingredients. The extra cop of quinoa made it look just like the picture! Great combo of flavors – loved it!

  24. Just discovered your blog via Pinterest. I’m in love! I’ll be back, lots! 🙂

  25. Made it earlier today and it is terrific. Can not stop eating it!

  26. This was delicious! So quick and filling. Will definitely make again Thank you for posting!

  27. I made this today and it was delicious! I added some Lawry’s garlic salt, black pepper, and feta…sooo good!!! Flavor combo is great but will reduce the amount of dressing next time…I don’t think it needed as much. Tasty dressing for sure!

  28. The flavors here are fantastic. I love the combination of flavors. Enjoy your vacation!

  29. Wow, beautiful and colorful salad! Yummm.

  30. Yum, refreshing and colorful! I especially love the idea of the orange pieces. Thank you for sharing!

  31. Cannot wait to try this! Enjoy your vaca!

  32. What a lovely colors & the flavors, wonderful. Thanks,,,

  33. I am making it this weekend!!

  34. Gorgeous, I could eat this every day of the week. Love the orange vinaigrette!

  35. Have so much fun on your trip, and try not to work too much! I know it’s easier said than done, but you’ll be so glad you did! This salad looks awesome, so refreshing and perfect for summer!

  36. This looks delicious! I love the idea of adding oranges to the mix to freshen things up!

  37. Question? Why do you say serve immediately after every recipe, I have tried most of your recipes and love them all, when I see that “serve immediately ” I am intimidated as I do not always serve immediately . Marie

    • Marie, I tend to end my recipes with “serve immediately” because it is best served immediately when it is fresh and/or hot. That never means that it is not good reheated or served cold in some instances. Please use your best judgement on reheating or re-serving leftovers.

  38. The colors of this salad are so gorgeous…I love the addition of the orange.

  39. Such a yummy salad! I love quick quinoa recipes 🙂

  40. So excited for you that you get to spend a little vacay time!
    I am in love with Quinoa salads (especially with the whole bikini wearing thing coming up soon) and your is absolutely gorg! Pinned….have fun! 🙂

  41. This quinoa salad sounds divine! Have a blast on vacation!

  42. Mmm, I never get fed up with quinoa, and this looks delightful! I hope you have an amazing time away 🙂 Maybe you’ll even share som of the trip here? I bet the food is amazing 😀 Happy Thursday! x

  43. What a great pre-vaca get lean and mean and clean out your fridge all in one kind of salad 🙂 And the orange vinaigrette is my kinda thing! And love the new font/graphic/text on the last couple posts!

  44. I love this! It’s so colorful and that orange vinaigrette sounds amazing! And, bonus, it’s healthy! What more could you ask for?