Caraway & Horseradish Broccoli Quinoa Salad

Created by Laura Wright
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Broccoli quinoa salad is hearty with whole grains and super flavourful with a horseradish dressing, crisp apples, and caraway seeds.

caraway and horseradish broccoli quinoa salad
caraway and horseradish broccoli quinoa salad
caraway + horseradish broccoli quinoa salad // via @thefirstmess


I am dead-set on a holiday decor extravaganza at my house this year. I’ve got some sweet garlands, birch trunks, old hydrangea blooms sprayed with gold spray paint, the lights, lanterns, a boxwood wreath, lime green osage oranges, grapevines, spruce cuttings, pine cones, and some jute rope and pretty ribbon to finish it off all nice. That’s just the outside stuff. It’s kind of soothing clipping branches and jamming them into frozen boxes of dirt in the name of merry-making. It’s definitely frivolous, but in the moment it feels extremely important. Also, having a hot drink in your comfy gear after–that feels important too.

I need the light-hearted distractions of twinkle lights, gold spray paint and bow-tying this time of year. It’s easy to make yourself feel trapped by all the things you absolutely have to accomplish within the span of one hectic month. Everyone is busy and everyone will tell you how busy they are at least 5 times in any given conversation. I am guilty of this.

I said this last week, but it bears repeating: I’m really going for calm and overall wellness in this mad season of life. I’m fixing up really nourishing eats, making the house smell good, trying to focus my eyes away from screens, and making small improvements to my daily motions–all in good time. If I go into 2015 with a focused, intentional whisper instead of a bang, I’ll be happy.

On that nourishing eats point, there’s this bowl of vegetables with caraway and fresh horseradish dressing. I do love a good and crunchy broccoli salad stashed away to mix with greens and a bit of avocado or something. The best ones always seem to have sweet and sour components. Some more broccoli inspiration with this pasta salad, this broccoli rabe and kale salad with cranberry dressing, and this ginger and sesame broccoli side dish.

This one is filled out with just a bit of cooked quinoa–enough to cling to the lightly cooked florets. I quick-pickle some shallots and add some crisp sweet apples to the mix as well. The dressing is a bit spicy and sharp with the horseradish and lemon, but grounded with the earthy anise-flavour of caraway. I’ve been adding just a bit of flaxseed oil to all of my dressings lately. I like the nutty taste.

Happy Thanksgiving to my American pals this week. Salad and hugs to you all :) xo

caraway and horseradish broccoli quinoa salad
caraway and horseradish broccoli quinoa salad

Caraway & Horseradish Broccoli Quinoa Salad

Broccoli quinoa salad is hearty with whole grains and super flavourful with a horseradish dressing, crisp apples, and caraway seeds.
No ratings yet
Broccoli & Cauliflower Salad with Horseradish Caraway Dressing & Apples - The First Mess
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings 6

Ingredients

CARAWAY HORSERADISH DRESSING

  • 2 tablespoons grated fresh horseradish
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • ½ teaspoon caraway seeds (plus extra to finish the salad)
  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon flaxseed oil (or more olive oil)

SALAD

  • 1 shallot, halved and shaved thin
  • cup apple cider vinegar
  • sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • ¼ cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 bunch of broccoli, cut into small florets
  • 1 small head of cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 1 apple, cored and diced small
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
  • ¼ cup Marcona almonds, chopped

Equipment

Notes

  • I steam the broccoli and cauliflower florets, but you could totally do this as a raw salad and bypass that extra step if you want.
  • I use a bit of flax oil in the dressing, but straight olive oil is also great!

Instructions

  • In a blender, combine all of the dressing ingredients until you have a smooth, creamy mixture. Check it for seasoning, adjust if necessary, and set aside.
  • Place the sliced shallots in a small bowl. Cover them with the ⅓ cup of apple cider vinegar. Season with salt and pepper and stir in the maple syrup. Let the mixture sit while you make the rest of the salad. You want the slices of shallot to be lightly softened.
  • In a small saucepan, combine the quinoa with ½ cup of filtered water and a pinch of salt. Bring the quinoa to a boil over medium heat. Then lower to a simmer until all of the water is absorbed, about 12 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  • Steam or boil the broccoli and cauliflower florets for 3-4 minutes or until slightly soft. Drain the florets and run cold water over them. Dry lightly with a paper towel and transfer to a larger serving bowl. To the bowl, add the cooked quinoa, diced apple, chopped dill, Marcona almonds, and extra caraway seeds.
  • Drain the shallots and add them to the bowl as well. Add as much dressing as you like and a good amount of salt and pepper. Toss to combine.
27/11/2014 (Last Updated 09/02/2023)
Posted in: autumn, broccoli, earthy, gluten free, grain-free, quick, refined sugar-free, salad, side dish, sour, spicy, vegan, winter

28 comments

Recipe Rating




  • Sarah

    2 stalks = 2 crowns?

    • Laura Wright

      Sarah, yes, 2 crowns would be appropriate too! :)
      -L

  • DebbieG

    I made this salad tonight. My only change was to lightly roast the cauliflower and broccoli. It was gorgeous. Thanks for the recipe.

  • Sherrie

    Beautiful words, from one world concerner to another, I couldn’t agree more. So moving is happening!! And we’ll be packing straight through the holidays and I said I wouldn’t bring out the decorations this year, that might make things a little crazy. BUT you’ve inspired me to get my twinkling lights on, they always have a warm and comforting way to soothe my soul.

    so much love girl,
    xo sherrie

  • Bethany Schimmel

    Wow. Your photography is amazing. I love reading food blogs and this has got to be the best photography I’ve seen in one.

  • Suzanne

    Just made this. Ate the entire blow. This is probably one of the best things I have ever eaten! fresh horseradish on this is genius!

  • la domestique

    Oh boy I feel you. Been struggling with the same stuff and it’s nice to hear I’m not the only one. Love the sound of a healthy holiday and YES to horseradish dressing!

  • Brian @ A Thought For Food

    I’ve tried to balance out all the heavy, unhealthy dishes with flavorful and satisfying salads. This one is blowing my mind. Love all the textures and the use of horseradish (why don’t more people include it in recipes?)

  • Grace @ The Big Reveal

    This looks so delicious! And, as usual, your photography blows me away! Love, love, love. Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Bec

    such stunning photos.. I am not drooling and salad dreaming! I hope you had a great TG x

  • kristie {birch and wild}

    I have a hard time slowing down during the holidays. I am always trying to make all of the food and make all of the gifts, furiously knitting away and baking for at least month. This year I decided to just do some basic homemade gifts, and then buy the rest from local artisans. That way, I can take a break and breathe, and I am also supporting the local economy.
    This salad looks lovely. I looks like the kind of clean eating I crave before the excess of the Christmas holidays.

  • Millie l Add A Little

    This looks amazing Laura and love what you’ve written!!

  • Sarah

    Thank you for this lovely post. This time of year it’s all too easy to get bogged down– both on a personal and big picture level– and lightness is definitely needed. This salad looks delicious. My stuffy head and weary body has been craving fresh, tangy, spicy grub like this… can’t wait to try!

  • Maggie @ Veg Fiend

    I am totally with you on being uneasy about the over-consumerism of this time. I do not have a TV at my house, and now that I am with my family for the holiday, and surrounded by the non-stop holiday commercials, I truly notice the pressure that large retail corporations put on consumers to buy, buy, buy at this time over year over spending time with their loved ones. When I am at my own house, I do come across the occasional holiday ad online or in the newspapers, but it is nothing like the ubiquity of tv ads. Glad to see you are feeling calm and well during this season :)

  • Kathryn

    In my book, there is nothing so good at relieving stress than twinkly Christmas lights, preferably with a glass/mug of something hot and/or boozy. Love the punch of flavours in this salad too. I feel better just looking at your vibrant pictures.

  • Nicola

    Love the thoughts! Horseradish & Caraway, two things I’ve been wanting to try lately, there not so common in Aus. Am definitely going to have to go hunting now. :)

  • hannah

    This looks lovely and I’m totally feeling the same about trying to ease into 2015 in a really calm and positive place emotionally.. start as you mean to go on.
    Serves 6? Did you have it as a side dish?
    xxx

    • Laura Wright

      Hey Hannah, I suppose it could be more of a serves 4-6 kind of thing, depending on what else is on the table etc.
      -L

  • Lane | Green Spirit Adventures

    I love everything about this post. :) I totally agree with the whole slowing down for the holidays bit – and the decorating!!
    I’ve been craving broccoli for a couple of days now, so I think this recipe will absolutely hit the spot!

  • Christine

    Laura, I am so with you on the intentional slowing down during this season and keeping an eye towards wellness and wellbeing instead of allowing oneself to be swept up in the crazyness. I love your holiday decor photos – I cannot wait to do my house (inside and out!). Horseradish always feels like a holiday condiment (to me, I guess? haha) so it feels particularly fitting in this salad as we approach December! this may be a funny question, but I really like your linens here – where are they from?

  • Christina T

    This looks great! Do you think it would pack up well? I’m thinking about making it for a potluck.

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Christina, I think it would pack up just fine–you could even dress it ahead of time. I would just add the chopped dill and marcona almonds to the salad when you arrive at your destination.
      -L

  • Tieghan

    I am so with you on holiday decor and cheer. This is probably the busiest I have ever been, but I too have pines, lights and all the good stuff up this season! It’s my favorite!!

    Loving this nourishing plate, it’s the perfect thing to keep me going! :)

  • Aimee @ Simple Bites

    A beautiful sentiment for the holiday rush. I’m glad I’m not the only one who loves to play with pine boughs and branches with berries for outdoor holiday decor. Natural is best!

  • Karuna

    Wooooh do you have a book coming out soon that you not allowed to announce just yet??? Can’t wait for it already!!

    Will have to wait till you get more specific about that:)

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Karuna, Those vague comments were actually about a recipe I had to make for a certain popular food site ;)
      -L

  • valentina - sweet kabocha

    Flaxseed oil for President!! :D