Quinoa and Persian Cucumber Salad with Spicy Mint Sauce

This salad celebrates both the cool and the spicy, the juiciness of the cucumbers and the cool mint taste help to defuse the sharp bite of the jalepeno, creating a broad taste profile that is intriguing to the taste buds.

Because quinoa is a fluffy high-protein grain and cucumbers are light and crunchy, this dish is both filling and light. It makes the perfect snack or accompaniment to any meal.


Quinoa and Cucumber Salad
1/2 dried quinoa
1 c water
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp salt
1 1b persian cucumbers

Spicy Mint Sauce
1 bunch mint
1 jalepeno
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar

Cook the quinoa ahead of time.  Bring the quinoa, water, salt, and bay leaf to a boil in a small pot over high heat.  Then cover and reduce to medium heat.  Cook for about 15-20 minutes or until all the water has cooked off and the quinoa is light and fluffy.  Set aside and let it cool down.

Once the quinoa is cooled, chop up the cucumbers however you’d like.  I choose to slice them from end to end, then thinly slice them.  You don’t have to use persian cucumbers, I just prefer them because they are light and crunchy with a thin skin.

For the dressing, wash the mint leaves thoroughly and remove all green, crisp leaves.  Chop the jalapeno down the middle and remove the seeds and white veins inside, they are the spiciest parts.  If you don’t like things too hot you can use less pepper, but the cool flavors really defuse a lot of the heat.

Add the fresh mint leaves, jalapeno flesh, salt, oil, and vinegar to a food processor or a blender and blend well until there are no big chunks remaining.  The sauce is a little watery, but it’s perfect for this salad since the quinoa soaks it right up.

Toss everything all together and serve.  It’s best enjoyed immediately, you can refrigerate it for up to a day, but it may get a bit soggy.

Yields 4 servings


Would go great with:


5 Responses to “Quinoa and Persian Cucumber Salad with Spicy Mint Sauce”
  1. Melisser says:

    That sounds lovely!

  2. tova says:

    just made this. it’s very refreshing and delicious. thanks jacqueline!

  3. Heather says:

    I made this tonight and it just bursts with delicious flavor. The combination is perfect — so refreshing, crunchy and tasty!!

  4. Dew says:

    What is Quinoa in Persian. I tried to find more Persian recipe with Quinoa but was not successful.

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