Asparagus & Quinoa Salad with Charred Lemon Dressing

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Skill Level
Preparation Time 15 minutes Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 Cost Per Serving $1.75
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12Asparagus Spears, tough ends (bottom 2 inches) trimmed off
1/2 cupUncooked Quinoa
1 cupVegetable Stock (homemade with no salt added or using non-iodized coarse salt ) or Water
1/2 cupNo-Salt Added Sundried Tomatoes, thinly sliced (if they are not packed in oil, soak in warm water for 5 minutes)
1Yellow Bell Pepper, small dice
2 tbspFresh Tarragon, finely chopped
1Lemon, halved
1 tsp + 2 tspOlive Oil
To tasteNon-Iodized Coarse Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper


  1. ​In a medium pot, bring stock or water to a boil. Stir in quinoa, reduce heat to low and cover with lid. Cook until all the liquid has been absorbed, about 10 minutes.
  2. Over a hot bbq grill which has been scraped and cleaned before use, or in a large sauté pan over medium high heat, grill the asparagus. Turn them every few minutes until cooked but tender, about 10-12 minutes. Place the halved lemons, cut side down, on the grill or pan as well. Cook until golden brown.
  3. Slice asparagus up into small pieces, dress with 1 tsp olive oil and place in a bowl. Add the quinoa, sundried tomatoes, and pepper.
  4. Combine the remaining 2 tsp olive oil,  tarragon, salt and the juice from the grilled lemons in a small bowl. Season to taste. Whisk well and combine with your salad ingredients.


  • Grain products naturally contain iodine, so if you are following a low-iodine diet, you will need to limit your servings of grain products to 4 or less per day. One serving of grains is equal to a slice of bread (the size of a CD case) or ½ cup of couscous, rice or pasta. Because quinoa is a seed and not technically a grain, you can enjoy a larger amount at your meal without worrying you are eating too many grain servings.
  • The low-iodine diet also limits the amount of meat and poultry you can eat to 2 servings or less per day. One serving of meat or poultry is the size of a deck of cards. Soy proteins such as tofu should be avoided on the low-iodine diet.
  • Quinoa is a great option on a low-iodine diet as it is a complete protein and does not need to be limited. It is also a healthy source of protein and fibre for people looking for vegetarian meal ideas.
  • Six spears of asparagus provide 55% of the amount of vitamin K and 60% of the amount of folate that most people need each day. Vitamin K plays an important role in blood clotting, while folate is a B vitamin that is needed for red blood cell formation.