Clean Eating Green Quinoa (Basil Pesto Quinoa)

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my Privacy Policy.

Clean Eating Green Quinoa

No, I didn’t create a green quinoa hybrid. But I did create a delicious quinoa salad!

When I was a kid, I always asked my mom if she could make me “green noodles”. I LOVED green noodles! They were my favorite. A big, saucy bowl of pasta and basil pesto would make me a happy girl on just about any occasion.

But then I grew up and so did my metabolism. A big bowl of pasta is just no longer an option. BUT, that doesn’t mean I can’t still enjoy it.

In fact, I have found that quinoa, for me personally, is a much better option than pasta. So this salad is a perfect fit for me, and I still get to enjoy all the wonderful flavors of basil pesto!


Clean Eating Green Quinoa

(Makes 7 servings)


  • 4 cups cooked quinoa, cooked to package directions
  • 4 cups grated, raw zucchini
  • 1/2 cup prepared or homemade basil pesto
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese


  1. In a large mixing bowl, stir all ingredients together until well combined and serve.

Similar Posts


  1. PB and Peppers says:

    Fabulous recipe! I love it!! This is one for me to try for sure!! I love pesto in anything! But as you said just a small amount will do!

    1. graciouspantry says:

      PB – Wonderful! I hope you enjoy it!

  2. graciouspantry says:

    My pleasure! Enjoy!

  3. graciouspantry says:

    Jenny – I hope you enjoy it!

  4. Pingback: Lunch or “The Dinner” if you’re Irish « Pint Sized Pixie
  5. graciouspantry says:

    Erena – I hope you enjoy it!

  6. graciouspantry says:

    Mandasue – Sounds wonderful!

  7. About how many Zucchini makes a cup? One?

    1. graciouspantry says:

      Guest – Depending on the size, yes. Approximately.

  8. Skittlez822001 says:

    Ok, I know this is a silly question, but how do YOU make quinoa? I tried what the package said and it came out nothing like your picture.

    1. graciouspantry says:

      Skittlez – Haha! It never does look like the photo unless it’s cold. As long as you see those little white circles on the individual seeds, it’s done.

      I combine the water and quinoa and bring it to a boil. I cook it on low for about 15 minutes, or until the water is almost completely gone. I remove from heat and keep it covered for another 15 minutes.

  9. Tiffany, I found your website while I was deployed to Afghanistan. It was torture not being able to make any of your delicious-looking recipes. I am home now, and the Green Quinoa is the third recipe I have made of yours. It is delicious! Thank you for all the great recipes! Looking forward to making more of them!

    1. graciouspantry says:

      Laurstep – Welcome home!!! I hope you’ll enjoy many more!

  10. Looks simple and tasty! What pesto do you use?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Jori – I had some left over from Trader Joe’s, but any clean variety will work here.

  11. This is soooo good. I made it last night, wasn’t sure if I was supposed to let the quinoa cool off but I figured it would help melt the shredded parm I had. Oh my goodness we LOVE it! I prefer it warm vs. cold. My husband seems like it cold. I can see this being a staple in our house for quite some time. Thank you so much for this wonderful recipe!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Angela – My pleasure! 🙂

  12. The zucchini are mixed raw right? I recently started eatning healthy and trying to be vegetarian and I’m interested in all healthy low calorie recipes so I can lose a few kgs thank you 🙂

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Iveta – Yes, it’s raw. Enjoy!

  13. Stephanie says:

    Does the quinoa need to cool before mixed with other ingredients?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Stephanie – It doesn’t have to be, but you can if you prefer. Enjoy!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.