Enjoy this colorful, hearty Summer Corn & Quinoa Caprese Salad packed with veggies, protein, and flavor!
With Memorial Day Weekend behind us, this is the unofficial start of summer. That means the start of barbecue, picnic, and summer pool party season!
When I’m not feasting on amazingly decadent food, wine, and beer at events and during my travels for work, I try to balance my meals at home with healthier fare that is still hearty and filling. This Summer Corn Quinoa Caprese salad does the trick.
Summer Corn & Quinoa Caprese Salad
When I first created this salad a few years ago, I basically grabbed what I had in my refrigerator and pantry at the time. Those are often the best creations, aren’t they? I love using what we have, throwing it all together, and seeing what sticks.
This is one that stuck and I continue to make it over and over. I make it all summer long, every summer. I’ve had friends make it and tell me it’s always a hit at summer BBQs and summer picnics. It is truly a DELICIOUS summer salad!!
Fresh Summer Vegetables
All of the ingredients in this salad are fresh summer ingredients. They’re items we tend to have in abundance and need to use up, or items I usually have in my pantry as a staple.
I always have spinach to use up because we buy it in large batches. I will grow my own spinach soon… just need to clean up the veggie garden in the new house! Spinach is great to use up in salads like this, in sauces, in smoothies, and sauté some up for breakfast.
Quinoa is one of the ancient grains I almost always have stocked in my pantry because it’s so great to toss into salads or side dishes for some grain-free protein.
And being summer, that means an abundance of tomatoes and corn. I LOVE summer corn! It’s so sweet and I adore the texture corn adds to any dish.
You might notice that lately I’ve had a thing for creating twists on the classic Caprese salad (like my Melon & Prosciutto Caprese Salad and my Pesto Caprese Tartines). Being mostly dairy-free, I only have cheese on the rare occasion that it’s served at events, but I can’t resist the incredible combo of mozzarella + tomatoes + basil. What IS it about that combo that is so tempting and addictive? So I just take my enzymes and try to limit my personal intake of mozzarella to a couple of bites, while watching everyone else around me fully enjoy the combos :)
Bon Appetit, friends! Hope you enjoy every last bit of summer – whether out there adventuring, or on a plate with this recipe!
More summer recipes
- Backyard BBQ: Party Ideas
- Perfect BBQ Side Dish Recipe: Corn with Basil Lime Butter
- The Perfect Summer Party: Food, Drink, and Entertaining Ideas
- Melon & Prosciutto Caprese Salad
- Pineapple Mango Salsa
Summer Corn & Quinoa Caprese Salad Recipe
Corn & Quinoa Caprese Salad
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 cups spinach leaves either chopped or torn
- 2 cups cooked quinoa
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes halved
- 1 cup cooked corn kernels either 1 cup frozen kernels, cooked; or kernels from about 2-3 cooked corn on the cobs
- 1/2 cup sliced mozzarella cheese
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
- salt and pepper to taste
- Cook quinoa according to package directions.
- Cook corn – fresh or frozen – and set aside.
- Allow quinoa and corn to cool at room temperature before adding to the salad.
- In a small bowl, combine olive oil and balsamic vinegar; set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine remaining ingredients.
- Slowly pour olive oil + balsamic vinegar dressing over salad and mix gently.
- Salt and pepper to taste, as needed.
This blog post was originally published in August 2016. It has been updated with new photos and updated text, but the recipe remains the same delicious summer salad recipe.