Recipes

Amazing Jennifer Aniston Salad (Quinoa Style)

If you missed the viral Jennifer Aniston Salad moment that took over social media this summer, allow me to introduce it to you.

Jennifer Aniston shared this salad recipe originally back in 2015 when doing an Instagram takeover for the Living Proof brand. It again made a reappearance in a TikTok video this summer.

She called it her “perfect salad”. Made with bulgur wheat (or quinoa), cucumbers, red onion, parsley, mint, chickpeas, feta and pistachios (or almonds), this salad is certainly a perfectly nutritious one. A nice mix of crunchy textures tossed in a light, slightly tangy vinaigrette.

I say it doesn’t have to be summer to enjoy this delightful meal.

This recipe makes enough servings that it’s perfect for meal prep and something you can eat on for lunch all week.

A great way to ensure healthy eating no matter what time of the year. Plus, I love when you can make meals once and have them multiple times throughout the week.

What’s In The Jennifer Aniston Salad?

A Mediterranean inspired mix of flavors and textures. I love the ease of this salad and all the wonderful nutritional benefits. Here’s a look at what you’ll need:

  • Quinoa or Bulgur Wheat: In the original Jennifer Aniston salad, she uses bulgur wheat. However, I’ve found this can be hard to find in stores. A great substitute is quinoa. Plus, it’s more nutritious and similar to bulgur wheat in that it’s also a complete protein. Be sure to rinse quinoa before cooking to cut down on the bitter taste.
  • Chickpeas: Also known as garbanzo beans. They are a great plant-based protein and full of fiber. You’ll want to rinse them before adding them to the salad to get rid of any excess sodium from the canning liquid.
  • Herbs: You’ll want to use fresh mint and parsley (1/2 cup of each). You can always add more to your liking.
  • Vegetables: Add 1 1/2 cups of an English cucumber that you have quartered and diced. You don’t have to peel English cucumbers as their skin is not bitter. You’ll also add 1/3 cup of a red onion diced small. Optional: To cut down on the bite, you can soak the red onion in a glass of cold water for 10 minutes. drain and then add to the salad.
salad ingredients
  • Feta Cheese: A tangy, crumbly delight that is a perfect addition to many salads, especially Mediterranean-inspired.
  • Pistachios or Almonds: You can use either chopped pistachios or sliced almonds. Both provide extra nutrition and a nice crunch. If you need a nut-free option, sunflower seeds will also work.
  • Vinaigrette: A combination of 1/4 cup of olive oil and 3-4 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice.
  • Sea Salt and Pepper: Add salt and pepper to taste about 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt and 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper. More to your liking.

How to Make the Jennifer Aniston Salad

A light and brightly flavored salad that will satisfy your hunger cravings and one that is packed with nutrition. The beauty of this salad is that you can customize it to your liking and what you have on hand.

STEP 1: RINSE AND COOK QUINOA

Make sure to rinse the quinoa before cooking to cut down on the bitter taste. Add to a small saucepan with water, bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat. Cook for about 15 minutes until light and fluffy. Once cooked allow 10 minutes to cool.

STEP 2: PREPARE AND COMBINE VEGGIES/HERBS

Chop the cucumbers, red onion, and pistachios, and mince the parsley and mint. Add to a large bowl along with feta cheese.

STEP 3: ADD QUINOA AND VINAIGRETTE

Once the quinoa has had a chance to cool, add it to the bowl with the veggies and herbs. The final step is to add the vinaigrette of lemon juice and olive oil along with salt and pepper. Toss to coat.

Serve immediately or chill in the fridge for at least an hour. Chilling overnight will draw out the most flavor as the ingredients will have a chance to meld together.

Additional Toppings

You can make this delicious salad your own by adding additional ingredients. Some ideas include:

  • Pomegranate seeds (arils)
  • Raisins
  • Additional mint and parsley
  • Avocado slices
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Greek olives
  • Serve on a bed of romaine or arugula

The options are endless. Enjoy!

Looking For Other Salad Recipes?

Check out these other easy, filling salad recipes:

Jennifer Aniston salad

Amazing Jennifer Aniston Salad (Quinoa Style)

A nutritious salad made with fresh herbs, quinoa, chickpeas, cucumbers, red onion, nuts, and feta. Topped with a light vinaigrette of olive oil and lemon juice. Makes about 8 side dish servings or 4 main-dish servings.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Servings 8 side salads servings

Ingredients
  

  • 2 cups filtered water
  • 1 cup quinoa or bulgur wheat
  • 1 1/2 cups English cucumber, chopped into quarters
  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained
  • 1/3 cup red onion, finely diced
  • 1/2 cup fresh mint, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3-4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (About 1 large or 1 1/2 medium lemons)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt (I use Redmond's Real Salt)
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds or chopped pistachios (Pine nuts and sunflower seeds are other great options)

Instructions
 

  • Rinse quinoa and then add it to a small saucepan with 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat. Cook for 15 minutes until light and fluffy. Set the quinoa to the side and allow it to cool for 10 minutes or more.
  • In a large bowl, combine chopped cucumber, red onion, parsley, mint, almonds or pistachios, chickpeas, and quinoa or bulgur wheat. Add olive oil, lemon juice, and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat.
  • Serve and enjoy or place in the fridge and allow to cool for an hour or overnight. Leftovers can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 5 days in an airtight container.

Notes

  • Consider adding these additional ingredients:
    • Avocado slices
    • Pomegranate seeds (arils)
    • Raisins
    • Serve on a bed of romaine or arugula lettuce
    • Cherry tomatoes
    • Greek olives
Keyword bulgur wheat salad, healthy mediterranean salad, jennifer aniston salad, quinoa salad, viral salad recipe

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