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Mexican Sweet Potato Quinoa Salad

I’m taking some time off to be with my family for a little while.
This recipe is written by Allison of Some the Wiser. Welcome, Allison!

I love food and I love to cook, though I haven’t always been very adventurous in the kitchen.  I have been a regular stalker of food blogs, I love to try new recipes and unusual ingredients, and I read cookbooks cover to cover like novels.  But until very recently, I didn’t dare deviate from a recipe.

mexican quinoa salad with sweet potato

I think my cautious cooking ways may have began when I was eight years old and I hatched a plan for an original Mother’s Day breakfast surprise.  My creation involved green grapes, yogurt, and lettuce.  It was a surprise alright, just not an edible one.  After that, I stuck to recipes.

For the most part, things have run smoothly in the kitchen with recipes and I have served meals, not science experiments, that are met with smiles at the table.  But now I have three kids and that has changed everything.

As a single mother working from home, I have to make a deliberate effort to accomplish the things on my daily to-do lists while making sure my children are always at the top of the priority list.

sweet potatoes and quinoa

Sometimes, getting to the grocery store doesn’t make it onto the schedule.  When I haven’t been able to round up all the ingredients for specific recipes, I have, of necessity, learned to improvise.

And that’s how this recipe, Sweet Potato Quinoa Salad, was born.  At the end of a long week, I found myself an hour from dinner time, with only some of the ingredients for all of the recipes I wanted to make.  But I had Quinoa, and I had Sweet Potatoes, and I was craving that Southwest Flavor.

mexican quinoa sweet potato salad

I can’t tell you that I have completely recovered from my childhood kitchen trauma, but I can assure you that this delicious recipe is no science experiment.  You will find it enjoyably edible!

Do you follow recipes closely or do you experiment in the kitchen?

sweet potatoes and quinoa

Sweet Potato Quinoa Salad

Yield: Serves 6
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

At the end of a long week, I found myself an hour from dinner time, with only some of the ingredients for all of the recipes I wanted to make.  But I had Quinoa, and I had Sweet Potatoes, and I was craving that Southwest Flavor.


  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes (about 1 pound)
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored, and diced
  • 3 tablespoons minced green onion
  • 1 cup sliced black olives
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder (or to taste)
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 cup diced cherry tomatoes for garnish
  • salt
  • freshly ground pepper


  1. Combine quinoa with a large pinch of salt and 2 cups of water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a gentle simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally until the grain is tender. If there is some water remaining, carefully strain the quinoa. Let cool slightly.
  2. Meanwhile, peel the sweet potatoes and dice into 1/2 inch or smaller pieces. Cover with water in a medium saucepan, add a pinch of salt, and bring to boil. Cook until tender, approximately 15 minutes. Drain well and cool slightly.
  3. Toss together the potatoes, quinoa, bell pepper, onion, olive, avocado, and cilantro. Whisk the oil, lime juice, and chili powder together then toss the salad with the mixture. Taste and adjust salt and pepper seasonings. Garnish with cilantro and grape tomatoes. Serve warm with tortilla chips.


Note: If you have a baby, six months or older, at home, this makes delicious baby food too! Reserve a small portion of cooked quinoa and cooked sweet potatoes. Puree with one or two tablespoons of milk and serve.

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Nutrition Information
Yield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 309Total Fat 18gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 15gCholesterol 0mgSodium 285mgCarbohydrates 33gFiber 7gSugar 4gProtein 6g offers recipe nutritional information as a courtesy and is an estimate only. This information comes from online calculators. Although makes every effort to provide accurate information, these figures are only estimates.

Did you make this recipe?

I’d love it if you let me know what you think! Snap a photo and tag me on Instagram at @goodlifeeats with the hashtag #goodlifeeatsrecipes so I can see what you’re cooking up in YOUR kitchen!

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Friday 5th of June 2015

Hi Katie, I had to stop by today after sharing your recipe again for the umpteenth time. I've been making variations of this salad for three years now and it's a hit every single time. It's become a staple dish for us now, and I'm even asked to make it for family lunches and events. So thank you! :)

Katie Goodman

Monday 8th of June 2015

Hi Francine - thank you so much for sharing! Glad you love it! :)


Saturday 17th of January 2015

Has anyone ever served this as a hot dish, rather than a salad? Thinking it will be a great potluck item to throw in a crock pot on a cold winter night?!


Thursday 13th of November 2014

I CANT WAIT TO MAKE THIS!!!!!! But I'm wondering about the nutritional information for this recipe and how much is "a serving". THANKS!


Friday 27th of December 2013

I spontaneously tried this recipe. I just stocked the fridge with a bunch of healthy goodies. This dish is amazing!!!!it will definitely be a staple at my dinner table.

Staci @ ClickandCookRecipes

Friday 5th of October 2012

I used to be a by the book recipe gal, but I'm slowly venturing out. This recipe looks wonderful...I just love quinoa. Thanks for sharing!