Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad

$6.74 recipe / $1.69 serving
by Beth - Budget Bytes
4.98 from 68 votes
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I’m living off refrigerator salads all summer, what about you? Oh, you don’t know what a refrigerator salad is? It’s a salad that holds up well to refrigeration (doesn’t go limp and soggy like lettuce), and a meal prepper’s best friend. During the summer months I love mixing up a big batch of refrigerator salads, like this Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad, to eat all week. Sometimes I eat them alone as a light entrée, sometimes I use them as a side dish, sometimes as a base for bowl meals. They’re versatile, delicious, and never go to waste in my house!

Overhead view of a bowl of Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad with lemon wedges and a black fork.

This Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad is basically a summer version of my Spanish Chickpeas and Rice. It’s a little lighter, brighter (no smokiness), and served cold. It’s perfect for this scorching heat! 

Substitutions and Add-Ins

This salad is super versatile, so here are some other ingredients that would go well in this salad, in case you don’t like any that I’ve included, can’t get them for a decent price, or just happen to have some of these items on hand and need to use them up: 

  • Couscous or orzo in place of the quinoa
  • Cucumber
  • Tomatoes (diced or grape tomatoes cut in half)
  • Feta
  • Roasted Red Peppers
  • Red Onion
  • Top with a dollop of hummus

How to Serve Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad

I intended this dish to be a vegetarian/vegan main dish with a large serving size of 2 cups, but it could also be served as a side dish to any other meal (smaller serving size of about 1 cup). This would make a great base for a bowl meal (add grilled chicken or hard boiled egg), or could be stuffed into a pita as a sort of sandwich.

How Long Does This Salad Keep?

This Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad is very sturdy, so it’s good for about 4-5 days in the refrigerator (time may vary with refrigeration conditions). I haven’t tried freezing this one yet, but based on how well my Roasted Cauliflower and Quinoa Salad freezes, I think this one would also freeze well. I find frozen foods like this are usually best if eaten within three months.

Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad in mason jars, a forkful hovering above.

Need some help getting juice out of your lemons? Here are 5 Tips for Juicing Lemons.

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Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad

4.98 from 68 votes
This Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad is a light and refreshing summer salad that holds up well in the refrigerator and is perfect for meal prep!
Overhead view of Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad in a bowl with lemon wedges and a fork.
Servings 4 2 cups each
Prep 20 minutes
Cook 20 minutes
Total 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa ($1.20)
  • 1 fresh lemon ($0.37)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil ($0.48)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced ($0.16)
  • 1 tsp salt ($0.05)
  • freshly cracked pepper ($0.05)
  • 1 13oz. can quartered artichoke hearts* ($2.59)
  • 1 red bell pepper ($1.00)
  • 1 cup chopped fresh parsley ($0.35)
  • 1 15oz. can chickpeas ($0.49)

Instructions 

  • Rinse the quinoa well in a fine wire mesh sieve. Place the rinsed quinoa in a pot with 1.75 cups water. Place a lid on the pot, turn the heat on to high, and allow the water to come to a boil. Once it reaches a full boil, turn the heat down to low and let it simmer for 15 minutes (lid on).
  • While the quinoa is cooking, prepare the lemon garlic dressing. Zest the lemon, then squeeze the juice (you'll need 1/4 to 1/3 cup juice). Add the lemon juice and 1 tsp of the zest to a bowl or jar along with the olive oil, minced garlic, salt, and some freshly cracked pepper (10-15 cranks of a pepper mill). Whisk the ingredients together or close the jar and shake until they are combined. Set the dressing aside.
  • After the quinoa has cooked, spread it out into a casserole dish or other wide shallow dish and refrigerate uncovered for about 15 minutes to cool it down.
  • While the quinoa is cooling, prepare the rest of the salad ingredients. Drain the artichoke hearts and roughly chop them into smaller pieces. Finely dice the red bell pepper. Roughly chop the parsley. Rinse and drain the chickpeas. Place the artichoke hearts, bell pepper, parsley, and chickpeas in a large bowl.
  • Once the quinoa has cooled, add it to the bowl with the other salad ingredients. Toss gently to combine, then drizzle the lemon garlic dressing over top. Gently toss again until everything is coated in dressing. Serve immediately or refrigerate up to 4-5 days.

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Notes

*You can use artichoke hearts in water or oil, with or without herbs.

Nutrition

Serving: 2CupsCalories: 447.13kcalCarbohydrates: 51.13gProtein: 15.85gFat: 24.13gSodium: 1276.3mgFiber: 12.08g
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Video

Keep scrolling to see the step by step photos below…

Close up of finished Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad in the mixing bowl with wooden salad tongs

How to Make Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad – Step by Step Photos

Uncooked quinoa with water in a pot

Rinse 1 cup of quinoa well in a wire mesh sieve. Once rinsed, add it to a pot along with 1.75 cups water. Place a lid on pot and turn the heat on to high. Let the water come up to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, turn the heat down to low, and let it simmer for 15 minutes with the lid in place.

Juiced and zested lemon

While the quinoa is cooking, prepare the lemon garlic dressing. Zest a lemon, then squeeze out the juice. You’ll need anywhere from 1/4 to 1/3 cup juice.

Lemon Garlic Dressing in a mason jar

Add 1 tsp of the lemon zest, 1/4 cup olive oil, 2 minced cloves of garlic, 1 tsp salt, and some freshly cracked pepper (10-15 cranks of a pepper mill) to the lemon juice. Whisk the ingredients together, or, if using a jar, shake until the ingredients are combined. Set the dressing aside.

Cooked Quinoa in the pot

After simmering for 15 minutes the quinoa should be tender and fluffy, an no liquid should remain in the pot.

Spread out quinoa in a dish to cool

Spread the quinoa out into any sort of shallow dish then place it in the refrigerator to cool for about 15 minutes. Spreading it out is key because that increases the surface area in contact with the cold air and allows any excess moisture to evaporate.

Chopped ingredients for salad in a large bowl

While the quinoa is cooling, prepare the rest of the ingredients for the salad. Drain and roughly chop one 13oz. can of quartered artichoke hearts. Finely dice one red bell pepper. Roughly chop about 1 cup of fresh parsley. Rinse and drain one 15oz. can of chickpeas. Place the artichoke hearts, bell pepper, parsley, and chickpeas in a large bowl.

Add cooled quinoa to salad bowl

Once the quinoa is cooled, add it to the bowl with the rest of the ingredients and gently toss to combine.

Lemon garlic dressing being poured over the salad bowl

Pour the lemon garlic dressing over the salad and toss once more until everything is coated in dressing.

Close up of finished Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad in the salad bowl

The Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad is ready to be eaten immediately or…

Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad being portioned into mason jars

Or portion it out into containers for your meal prep and refrigerate up to 4-5 days.

Close up side view of Lemony Artichoke and Quinoa Salad in a bowl

So light and refreshing!

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  1. This recipe has become a healthy staple. I have one child who loves taking the leftovers for lunch and another child who feels just okay about this dish. I consider that a win. I love it. I could eat it everyday.

  2. This recipe is a staple for me and I make this all the time. One of the reasons I’ll never quit this website. I’ll omit the parsley or swap finely diced cucumber, and double the salt and garlic.

    I also cook quinoa like pasta: water and salt in pot, boil, add quinoa, cook ~20 min until translucent w/rings, then drain and rinse and cool.

  3. Delicious, easy and healthy! I will make it again and not change a thing! Thanks for a wonderful recipe!

  4. Great recipe as is and perfect for meal prep! Also lends itself well to other additions (leftover asparagus and Capers to this most recent batch). I keep everything on hand for when I need a cheap and easy lunch prep for the week. Thank you!

  5. Just made this! Loved it and adding it to my list of go-to recipes! I paired it with the Easy-bake buttery cod recipe 💛

  6. This recipe is so tasty for lunches! I’ve honestly never been a huge artichoke fan, but really liked them in this. I doubled the bell peppers and the chick peas. The salad stayed fresh all week and didn’t get that gross soggy texture that some get after a while. I’ll make this one again!

  7. Amazing recipe. Love it. This will become a staple delicious lunch for me. THANK YOU!!!

  8. YUM! I actually exclaimed out loud after my first bite… and it wasn’t even the first time I’ve made this recipe. I’ve used both orzo and farro, and have added red bell pepper, cucumber, tomato, and feta in addition to the listed ingredients. A perfect summer lunch!

  9. Absolutely delicious! I make this on Mondays for my lunch throughout the week. I’ve also made it a couple of times for family and friends and they have asked for recipe because it’s so good. I usually add an additional bell pepper either yellow or orange and it’s always amazing! Thank you so much for this recipe, it has been a weekly staple for the last couple of months.

  10. Fresh and delicious , I’m bringing this to an Easter party. I added more dressing since I tripled the recipe and then included kalamata olives

  11. Made this recipe a few times to many different occasions. It was a HIT!!! Quite a few people experienced quinoa for the first time. They asked me to text them the recipe. Of course I did. 😋

  12. Totally delicious and perfect for warm weather! I added some kalamata olives but other than that made it exactly as written and it turned out wonderful.