Photo of Mexican Quinoa Salad by WW

Mexican Quinoa Salad

Total Time
30 min
10 min
20 min
Protein-rich quinoa and black beans anchor this vegetarian salad. Why rinse the quinoa? It has a natural coating called saponin that can make the grain taste bitter when cooked, but it’s easy to avoid by rinsing the quinoa just before cooking. Boxed quinoa often comes pre-rinsed, but rinsing again won’t hurt. The most common quinoa varieties available are white, black, and red. We’ve opted for white in this recipe because of its neutral flavor. Red and black quinoa have their own unique flavors that are bolder and earthier. Look for fresh pico de gallo in the produce section of your supermarket near the refrigerated salsas.


Uncooked quinoa

1 cup(s), rinsed in a mesh strainer, drained


2 cup(s)

Canned black beans

15 oz, rinsed and drained

Frozen corn kernels

1½ cup(s), thawed (or fresh or canned)

Pico de gallo

1 cup(s)


¼ cup(s), chopped

Table salt

¼ tsp

Cayenne pepper


WW Reduced fat shredded Mexican style blend cheese

4 oz


  1. Place quinoa and water in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. Turn off heat; let sit, covered, for 5 minutes. Pour quinoa into a large bowl; let cool.
  2. Add black beans, corn, pico de gallo, cilantro, salt, cayenne, and cheese to quinoa; gently toss salad together. Cover; chill for 2 hours before serving.
  3. Serving size: about 1 cup