Mega Protein Power Salad
A Hearty Salad of Grains, Lentils, and Vegetables

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Mega Protein Power Salad

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Adjust Servings:
16 ounce bag, washed and trimmed Organic Spinach
20 tomatoes sliced in quarters Grape Tomatoes
1 diced Red Onion
1 cups, cooked Farro
1 cups cooked Quinoa
1 cup cooked Brown Lentils
1/4 cup chopped Italian Parsley
1 medium diced Green Zucchini
1 medium, diced Red Bell Pepper
1/4 cup Lemon juice
2 cloves, minced Garlic
1 Tablespoon Fresh Ground Pepper
2 teaspoons Pink Himalayan Salt

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Farro, Quinoa, Lentils and Vegetables make this grainy, healthy salad a meal for the whole family. Serve as a side dish or a main course.

  • 40 minutes
  • Serves 6
  • Easy




Mega Protein Power Salad

When asked “where do you get your protein from?”

I always respond the same way, “spinach, lentils, beans, quinoa…..”

Or, I sarcastically respond with, “do I look protein deficient?”

Recently, I met my daughter and son-in-law to be at a restaurant  for dinner. As usual, I ordered my meal without a plethora of ingredients. As a healthy plant-based eater, I know all too well the challenges of eating out. On the upside, I usually end up getting an idea for a recipe of my own from the meal I altered at the restaurant. This was just such a night.

Although the salad on the menu looked wonderful, I had to remove the chicken, feta cheese, and the dressing. The waitress asked if I wanted extra vegetables. Of course I wanted extra vegetables. “What kind are there? Anything you have in the kitchen would be awesome.”

As a result of this dining experience, the Mega Protein Power Salad was born. Although I don’t think anyone needs even a portion of protein the food industry claims we need, I decided to give my salad the protein hype in deserves. Yes, my protein comes from lentils, quinoa, farro, and spinach. My dressing is simple and brings out the flavor of the grains, and this salad clearly hits all the necessary nutritional components of any plant-based diet. In fact, although I enjoyed the salad I disassembled to create my own, at the restaurant, my simple version is way better.

For those of you not familiar with farro, it is an ancient grain with a thick, chewy texture. Extremely nutritious grain, it’s an excellent source of protein, fiber and nutrients like magnesium, zinc and some B vitamins. Farro packs 8.14 grams of protein per 1 cup serving.

Quinoa, on the other hand, contains 14-16 grams of protein. And lentils have 18 grams of protein.

So, when someone asks you where you get your protein, point at this one bowl wonder.


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Cooking Farro

On a Stove Top:

Measure 1 cup farro into a fine mesh sieve and rinse with cold water.
Transfer to a medium sized pot that has a lid.
Add 4 cups water or stock or a combination of both and 1/4 tsp. salt.
Bring to a boil over high heat.
Reduce heat to low, cover and cook for 25-30 minutes, until it is softened but still chewy.
If there is liquid remaining in the pot, drain it off or save it to add to a soup, stew or sauce.
Let cool by transferring to a container and storing in the refrigerator.


Cooking Quinoa

Rinse the quinoa: Measure 1 cup of quinoa and place into a fine-mesh strainer. Rinse thoroughly with cool water for about 2 minutes.
Rub and swish the quinoa with your hand while rinsing. Drain.
Stir in 2 cups of water or broth and the salt. Bring to a rolling boil.
Let cool by transferring to a container and storing in the refrigerator
Lower heat and cook, covered, for 15 minutes.
Turn heat down to the lowest setting.
Cover and cook for 15 minutes.
Let stand, covered, for 5 minutes.
Fluff the quinoa gently with a fork, and serve.


Cooking lentils

Rinse the 1 cup lentils:
Pick over and remove any shriveled lentils, debris, or rocks.
Thoroughly rinse under running water.
Combine the lentils and 2 cups water: Transfer the rinsed lentils to a saucepan and pour in the water. Add any seasonings being used, reserving the salt.
Bring to a rapid simmer, then reduce heat: Bring the water to a rapid simmer over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to maintain a very gentle simmer.
You should only see a few small bubbles and some slight movement in the lentils.
Cook the lentils: Cook, uncovered, for 20 to 30 minutes. Add water as needed to make sure the lentils are just barely covered.
Let cool by transferring to a container and storing in the refrigerator


Prepare Vegetables

Dice Red Onions, red bell pepper, zucchini, and chop parsley and grape tomatoes.
Set aside.


Combine quinoa, farro, lentils, vegetables and tore ingredients

In a large bowl, combine cooled farro, lentils, quinoa, diced vegetables, herbs, seasonings, and lemon juice.



For each bowl or plate, begin with a bed of spinach. If using a bowl, create a "bowl" of spinach, with a hole in the center.
Spoons lentil salad mixture into the hole created in the bowl or in the center of the plate.

Kathy Carmichael

Hi! My name is Kathy, I am a high school English teacher by day & vegan enthusiast and blogger by night. My entire blog is fully plant-based vegan. I truly believe what we eat & how we live determines the health of us & our planet! :)

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2 Comments Hide Comments

This sounds divine!! I have had a bag of farrow in my cabinet for quite some time and just have not known what to do with it. I am pretty sure I have almost all of the ingredients for this… except the spinach… but I do have some swiss chard and I think that would be a good substitute. Can’t wait to try this… it sounds so refreshing and so HEALTHY!!! Thank you for the awesome recipe

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