Looking for the ultimate meal prep solution? Look no further than our Mediterranean Quinoa Salad in a Jar! Whether you’re packing healthy lunches for work or craving quick, nutritious meals for the week ahead, these jars are a game-changer.

Picture this: layers upon layers of vibrant veggies, hearty quinoa, tender chicken, and protein-packed chickpeas, all perfectly portioned and beautifully presented in a convenient jar. And let’s not forget about that zesty olive oil dressing that ties everything together with a burst of Mediterranean flavor.

Not only is this salad visually stunning, but it’s also packed with all the nutrients you need to power through your day. It’s a wholesome, satisfying meal that’s as delicious as it is nutritious.

A salad in a jar with olive oil dressing, chickpeas, tomatoes, red onion, cucumbers, chicken, quinoa, and greens.
Make multiple batches of this salad in a jar to grab and go throughout the week.

Learning how to effectively meal prep has been a total game changer for us! Not only does it make it easy to stick to our nutrition goals throughout the week, but it also prevents waste and saves tons of time. You can’t go wrong! 

We love a tasty overnight oats recipe or even our DIY chipotle chicken meal prep boxes for grab-n-go options on busy days. However, with the weather getting warmer, we find ourselves craving something a little on the lighter side. That’s when the classic salad-in-a-jar option comes in to save the day. 

There are endless ways to make this meal prep staple, but our favorite is this quinoa salad with Mediterranean flair. Loaded with hearty grains, protein, and tons of fresh veggies, it’s vibrant, filling, and so good for you, too.

Plus, it’s quick and easy to make! We guarantee this salad will become a new staple in your recipe lineup. 

Why You’ll Love This Salad in a Jar

  • They’re budget-friendly and quick to make.
  • You can mix and match ingredients to fit your flavor preference and dietary needs. 
  • They’re perfect for making ahead of time and taking on the go. 
  • One jar is a single-serving so you can easily portion ingredients. 
Three Mediterranean quinoa salad in a jar portions.
Always add the wet ingredients to the jar first!

What You’ll Need 

For this recipe, we drew inspiration from classic Middle Eastern flavors and added loads of fresh produce. Here’s everything you’ll need: 

Salad in a Jar

  • Chickpeas – Also known as garbanzo beans, these are a staple in many Mediterranean recipes and add lots of texture as well as plant-based protein and fiber. 
  • Fresh Produce – A combination of red onions, grape tomatoes, and cucumbers adds vitamins, nutrients, fiber, color, and a satisfying crunch. 
  • Quinoa – A good source of complex carbs and a complete protein source, quinoa makes this salad in a jar ultra filling. 
  • Olives – We love olives and include Kalamata olives in this salad for a boost of healthy fats and a briny flavor. However, we know they can be a divisive ingredients. So, if they aren’t your thing, feel free to omit them completely. 
  • Cheese – Technically optional but highly recommended a sprinkling of feta adds a creamy texture that balances out the crispness of the veggies. 
  • Chicken – Again, this is optional but makes the salad filling. It’s also a great way to use up leftovers from when you make a whole chicken or roasted chicken and vegetables

Dressing

  • Olive Oil – This forms the base of the dressing creating a savory, slightly peppery flavor and adding healthy fats. 
  • Lemon Juice – Helps cut through some of the heaviness of the oil, creating a refreshing well-rounded dressing. 
  • Seasonings – Dried oregano, salt, and pepper create a slightly savory flavor that’s herbaceous and delicious. 

Making the Best Salad in a Jar 

Layering Your Salad

When it comes to making the best salad in a jar, the order of ingredients is crucial! 

  1. Start with the Dressing. We always want to add the dressing to the bottom of the jar so it doesn’t seep down and cause the rest of the ingredients to become soggy.  
  2. Add the Heaviest Ingredients. Next, add heavy items like chopped veggies, protein, and grains. 
  3. Include Lighter, More Delicate Options. To finish, include any add-ins and lighter ingredients like olives, greens, and salad toppings. 

Making this Mediterranean Quinoa Salad

Now that you know the basic order of importance, we can put it to use with this recipe specifically. 

  • To start, whisk your dressing in a bowl or in the jar itself. 
  • Next, add the chickpeas, tomatoes, red onion, cucumber, chicken, and quinoa
  • To finish, include the olives and your greens
  • Finally, seal your salad in a jar, and store it in the fridge until you’re ready to eat. Then, just invert it onto a plate, and enjoy! 
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03/20/2024 05:26 pm GMT
Overhead image of a salad in a jar containing greens, veggies, quinoa, chicken, and chickpeas that has been dumped into a bowl.

Add-Ins and Variations 

As mentioned, the beauty of our Mediterranean Quinoa Salad in a Jar lies in its versatility! You can easily customize it to suit your tastes and preferences. Here are some of our favorite variations to inspire you:

  • Swapping Out the Quinoa. We like to use quinoa to boost the protein content of this recipe. However, any grain you like best will work. For instance, you could replace it with cooked rice, bulgur pilaf, or even pasta. 
  • Using a Different Protein. If you want to keep this recipe vegetarian-friendly, you can omit the chicken completely. However, if you’re a fan of animal-based protein, try including other options like hardboiled eggs, ground beef or turkey, and cooked shrimp. 
  • Replacing the Fats. Feel free to omit the feta to make this recipe dairy-free. Or, swap it out with any other cheese you prefer like goat cheese or Parmesan. In addition, you can also include avocado chunks, nuts, or seeds for even more healthy fats. 

Common Questions About Salad in a Jar 

How long does this recipe last? 

On average, when stored in a sealed container, salads in a jar will stay fresh in the fridge for up to 5 days. 

Are you supposed to eat the salad in a jar? 

Technically, you can. However, the best way to enjoy this recipe or any meal-prepped salad is to flip it over and dump it onto a plate or in a bowl. This ensures everything gets coated with the dressing. 

Is this recipe gluten-free? 

Yes! Quinoa is naturally gluten-free. Just be sure to double-check the label, ensuring it comes from a certified gluten-free factory. Otherwise, you may run the risk of cross-contamination. 

More Meal Prep Salad Recipes

If you can’t get enough of the convenience and flavor of our Mediterranean Quinoa Salad in a Jar, then you’re in for a treat with these additional salad recipes from our collection! Here are some more of our favorites to tantalize your taste buds: 

A Mediterranean Quinoa Salad in a Jar.

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad in a Jar Recipe

5 from 3 votes
Author: Food Dolls
Servings: 1 serving
Prep: 5 minutes
Total: 5 minutes
Make this quick and easy Mediterranean Quinoa salad in a jar for a nutritious meal prep option you’ll look forward to eating throughout the week!

Ingredients  

Dressing:

  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice freshly squeezed
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste

Mediterranean Quinoa Salad in a Jar:

  • 1/2 cup chickpeas rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup grape tomatoes sliced
  • 1/4 cup red onion chopped
  • 1/2 cup cucumber chopped
  • Optional: cooked chicken
  • ½ cup quinoa cooked
  • ¼ cup Kalamata olives sliced
  • 1 cup spinach
  • Optional: feta cheese

Instructions 

  • Whisk the dressing ingredients together in a large mason jar.
  • Add the chickpeas, tomatoes, red onion, cucumber, chicken, quinoa, olives, greens, and cheese.
  • Seal, and store in the fridge up to 5 days.
  • To eat, invert the ingredients onto a plate, and enjoy!

Equipment

1 Large Mason Jar

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 855kcal | Carbohydrates: 121g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 15g | Sodium: 595mg | Potassium: 1737mg | Fiber: 14g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 3939IU | Vitamin C: 32mg | Calcium: 324mg | Iron: 10mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Like this recipe?Please leave a comment!

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Meet Alia & Radwa

Welcome to Food Dolls! We’re so glad you found us. We are Alia and Radwa, sisters who want to share simple and easy recipes with you. We hope you find recipes here that you enjoy making as much as we do! Learn more about us!

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Recipe Rating




6 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This was easy to put together and it has all the yum things I love. I made 4 so I can take it to work. ❤️