Black Bean and Mango Quinoa Salad

Disclaimer: This post was written as a part of the GoodLife Fitness Ambassador program. All opinions expressed are my own.

So how about a job update, eh?

Well, I am loving it. It’s exactly what I’ve always said I want to do ever since entering the dietetic profession: combine nutrition with cooking. I just love that this job takes such a food focus because like I always say: we eat food, not nutrients. People need practical, realistic tips for buying and cooking healthy food in order to eat healthily. So I’m thrilled to be in a job where I can help people do that!

Life is busy though. My days at work right now are filled with planning, meetings, and more planning (and they’ll soon be filled with cooking classes, grocery store tours, and nutrition sessions!). I also have a 45 minute commute to work on most days of the week (I work out of two grocery stores in two different cities), making my work day more like 9.5 hours rather than 8. And when you add  regular 6 am workouts at GoodLife Fitness with my boyfriend, you can see why I have little free time left!

This black bean and mango quinoa salad is a healthy vegetarian side dish or main course that's bursting with fresh flavour! It is also gluten free and easily adapted to be vegan.

Needless to say, food prep has been a life saver. I tend to spend several hours in the kitchen on one of my days off cooking up enough food to cover lunches and dinners for the week. When I was browsing for lunch ideas the other day I remembered this black bean and mango quinoa salad that I posted here years ago. That was in the dinosaur years of this blog though, so I decided to dust off the recipe and polish it up for reposting.

After making it again, this black bean and mango quinoa salad has renewed itself as one of my favourite recipes. It has that sweet and salty combination going on with the mango and feta, which I just love (please ignore the fact that there is no feta in these pictures – I forgot to add it and was far too lazy to do a reshoot)! Also I’m really digging its summer vibes. It would be perfect for summer picnics and barbecues. Ahhh just saying that is making me anxious. Summer, hurry up and get here sooner please?

This black bean and mango quinoa salad is a healthy vegetarian side dish or main course that's bursting with fresh flavour! It is also gluten free and easily adapted to be vegan.

Black Bean and Mango Quinoa Salad
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This black bean and mango quinoa salad is a healthy vegetarian side dish or main course that's bursting with fresh flavour! It is also gluten free and easily adapted to be vegan.
Yield: 3-4 servings
  • ¾ cup dry quinoa
  • 15 oz can black beans
  • ½ barely ripe mango, diced
  • ⅔ cup diced cucumber
  • ½ red pepper, diced
  • 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
  • 2 scallions, sliced
  • 1 cup chopped cilantro
  • ½ cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 5-6 tsp fresh lime juice
  • 1.5 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ tsp cumin
  • ⅛ tsp salt or more to taste
  1. Rinse the quinoa in a sieve, then combine with 1.5 cups cold water in a small pot with a lid. Bring to a boil then simmer covered for about 12-15 minutes. Once it's done, fluff with a fork and let cool completely (at least 1 hour).
  2. Combine the quinoa with the black beans, mango, cucumber, red pepper, cherry tomatoes, scallions, cilantro, and feta cheese.
  3. In a small dish whisk together the olive oil, lime juice, cumin, and salt. Add to the quinoa salad and stir well before serving.

This black bean and mango quinoa salad is a healthy vegetarian side dish or main course that's bursting with fresh flavour! It is also gluten free and easily adapted to be vegan.

What is something you used to make all the time that you haven’t made in a while?


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29 Responses to Black Bean and Mango Quinoa Salad

  1. Ah I’m so glad to hear you are loving the new job, Chelsea- it sounds like the perfect fit for you!! And this salad has summer written all over it- I can’t wait to recreate it, especially as mangoes are finally back in season! I need to go through my early blog posts and make those recipes- it seems like once I post about them, they get shoved under the rug and I forget all about ’em!

    • Chelsea

      Haha I do the same thing with my old blog posts too! And it’s a shame because there really are some good recipes in there.

  2. This sounds wonderful Chelsea! And yes, I love making meals like this ahead of time. This is the kinda thing we have 3/7 nights a week, and I love it! Have not combined black bean and mango yet though, especially with how good mangoes are right now, I bet this is amazing! YUM!

  3. Glad to hear that you’re loving your job, lady! It’s an awesome thing when you can do something you love, especially since we spend so much of our time working — we need to love it or we’ll be kind of miserable! And quinoa is actually something that I haven’t made in a long, long time. Rice has sort of taken over as my grain of choice, and poor keen-wah got shoved to the back of the pantry…

  4. Love adding mango to grain salads! It really brightens everything up and adds such great sweetness!

  5. New job sounds like a great fit- cooking and nutrition go together like PB and J :) Mango cutting is tough but this recipe sounds worth it, yum!

    • Chelsea

      Haha I hate cutting mango too! It helps that I use only a semi-ripe mango in this recipe though – I find they’re a lot easier to cut than the soft ripe ones.

  6. Mmmm, I have a recipe like this too that I love to make – and have to make again. So glad you’re loving your job, but also wish your work/commute day was shorter. That can get exhausting!!

  7. You and Lindsay Cotter are making me crave summer like no other with all these delicious salads. I love this and cannot wait to take it out for a spin. Black beans and mango! Sounds phenomenal.

    Also, I’m thrilled to hear you’re loving the job even with the long hours.

    • Chelsea

      I’m just so excited my salad cravings are returning. I honestly don’t love them in the winter, but come summer I’m ready for them!

  8. I’m so happy to hear you’re loving your new job! It sounds like a lot of work but when you truly enjoy it, it makes it all worthwhile.

    I agree that food prep is essential for healthy eating when you work so much and I love salads like this. Mango and black beans are so good together!

  9. The fact that you’re loving the job already before the actual ‘actioning’ has happened is awesome buddy- So stoked for you!

    This salad looks amazing and with the feta, it will be the sweet and savoury! I just finished shooting a feta-spiked salad and regretting adding it in- It looks like white puffs of crap lol

  10. This salad looks delicious!! I really like mango and feta is one of my favorite cheeses so I will definitely give it a try.

    Something I used to make all the time that I haven’t made in a while is salmon! I used to have broiled salmon with sweet potato fries and roasted veggies at least twice a week over the winter and I am just realizing that I completely stopped making it about 2 months ago! I guess I got tired of it after eating it too often but now I’m ready to bring it back ;)

    • Chelsea

      Haha salmon with sweet potatoes and roasted veggies used to be one of my staple meals too! I haven’t had it in a while though because the boyfriend hates fish. :P

  11. Looks delicious, Chelsea!! I love a good quinoa salad – the perfect lunch in my books!!

  12. Glad your new work is going swell. I also change my meals after photographing them and rarely change my photos, so I understand… especially if it turns dark outside. :)

  13. Sounds like you’ve found your happy place :) So good to hear things are going well in job world. Looking forward to hearing lots more about it all!

    The salad looks great! I’m imagining the feta with the fruit… mmmm. Would be ideal to pack up for lunch.

  14. This salad looks fantastic. Great job on the photoshoot. I used to make tofu at least once a week and now I can’t be bothered cooking it myself. Also doesn’t help that the bf hates the stuff haha.

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