In case your weekend eats were less than virtuous, here’s an awesome dish to get you back on track. By Friday, we will probably have devolved back into the carbs + cheese realm, but hey – it’s all about balance, right? I’ve been on something of a tabbouleh kick lately. It’s hard to resist such an incredibly simple dish that is quick to prepare, healthy, and still completely crave-worthy. I made this more traditional take from Alex and Sonja not long ago and it has definitely become my go-to classic version. I recently came across this slightly different version that uses quinoa in place of bulgur and includes shrimp for a boost in lean protein. I knew instantly that this would be a huge hit in our house and boy, was I right!

This is one of those super powered recipes that has a quick and simple preparation but makes a fabulous healthy meal. The salad is excellent chilled or at room temperature, making it an ideal make-ahead option for a healthy lunch or a light dinner. I can already tell this will become one of our most frequently repeated recipes. It’s hard to beat simple, healthy and quick!

  • Yield about 4-6 servings


  • 1 lb. shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tsp. olive oil, divided
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 1 cup chopped flat leaf parsley

For the dressing:

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper


  • 01

    In a medium bowl, combine the shrimp with the lemon zest, lemon juice, and 1 teaspoon of the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.

  • 02

    Add the water to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir in the quinoa and reduce the heat to medium low. Cover and cook 15 minutes, until the water is mostly absorbed. Remove from the heat, fluff with a fork, replace the cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool.

  • 03

    Heat the remaining teaspoon of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp to the pan in a single layer and cook, turning once, just until opaque, about 2 minutes total. Remove from the pan and let cool. Add to the bowl with the quinoa.

  • 04

    To the large mixing bowl, add the chopped cucumber, tomatoes, green onion and parsley. In a small bowl, combine the garlic, lemon juice, and olive oil for the dressing. Season generously with salt and pepper. Whisk until well blended, then pour over the salad in the large bowl. Stir everything together until well combined. Serve chilled or at room temperature.