Warm Rice & Quinoa Salad

I’ve been asked in the past about healthy lunches on the go, and while I’m working from home at the moment, I definitely understand the frustration with not having enough time or options to create something as equally yummy as it is healthy.

During my university packed lunch days, I found solace in large salads with couscous, either the pre-flavoured varieties (watch out for the salt!) or my own, from scratch. I’d usually prep them the night before, adding my leaves and any dressing in the morning. However, a cold couscous salad can become quite boring, and there are definitely healthier carbohydrate options out there.

This is where Uncle Ben’s latest rice and quinoa* combinations come in. I was kindly sent their full range to give a whirl, and while I was at first sceptical, I found their pouches do have perks. While white rice can be a little too starchy and hard to digest, the Uncle Ben’s medleys stick to wholegrain rice, quinoa, and pearl wheat in some packs. In the future, I think it would be nice to see wholly quinoa, pearl wheat, and wild rice options too.

Intriguingly, you can cook the rice in a pan (if you’re anti-microwaves, like me). I would definitely say Uncle Ben’s should adjust their instructions for this, as I needed a few big splashes of water in the pan when cooking, and it did take me more than two minutes. However, if you are working or studying and are looking for a healthy option to whip up under time/kitchen constraints, microwaving may be a good idea.

In my recipe, I used Uncle Ben’s Pearl Wheat & Quinoa Medley*, although if you are a coeliac you could try another from the range (beware of those with soy in, of course). I always think a warm salad makes a nice change, and while this one is a little heavy in the grains department, they’re slow-burning and will give you enough energy to get through a hectic afternoon at work or university.


Warm Rice & Quinoa Salad

1 packet of Uncle Ben’s Pearl Wheat & Quinoa Medley
1/2 red onion
5 cherry tomatoes
1/3 tin of chickpeas
Handful of coriander
+
Splash of olive oil
1 tbsp tahini
Squirt of lemon juice

  1. In a pan, boil 20ml water and add the Pearl Wheat & Quinoa Medley, stirring once and keeping the lid on for four minutes (or alternatively, microwave the pouch for two minutes)
  2. Slice the red onion into rings, halve the cherry tomatoes, wash the chickpeas and grab a handful of coriander
  3. In a bowl, mix everything together
  4. Splash the olive oil, lemon juice, and tahini over the salad and enjoy!

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