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Sweet and Tangy Turmeric Quinoa Salad

My childhood in Texas was filled with memories of fried chicken, corn bread and the best chicken and dumplings (pronounced dump-lins) in the south. Every memory before the age of ten is filled with food. It’s hard to believe I didn’t learn to cook those family favorites. My cooking skills were honed opening cans of ravioli or heating up microwave dinners. I still insist that cereal is a perfectly acceptable dinner.

But as an adult, having to learn how to cook for my family, I found my niche with Mexican food, Tex-Mex style. I poured over cookbooks and blogs, eventually turned into a great cook, with the exception of Asian cuisine. I ruined many dinners trying to impress my family with authentic Asian recipes. Time and time again we ended up getting take out when my recipes failed. When my son was diagnosed with multiple food allergies we could no longer order from our local favorites, the risk of cross contact was too high.

In 2014 I discovered San-J products at a local gluten-free expo. I was blown away at how rich the sauces were. Finally, I could create delicious, Asian inspired meals using the San-J sauces. We could enjoy Asian food at home again.

My husband loves the spicy Szechuan sauce but the Teriyaki and Orange sauces are family favorites. The most versatile, besides the Tamari, is probably the Sweet and Tangy sauce. The Sweet and Tangy sauce will make a bowl of rice and veggies seem like a gourmet meal. Tofu and Noodles are better than takeout with San-J sauce.

I still need a little help when it comes to Asian-inspired meals. Luckily, the San-J website has plenty to choose from, including a set of spring-inspired recipes written by the incredible Amie Valpone of The Healthy Apple. Here’s a spring-inspired recipe that I found most exciting to make!

Sweet and Tangy Turmeric Quinoa Salad


½ cup Quinoa ¼ teaspoon Ground cayenne pepper or crushed red pepper flakes
¼ teaspoon Ground turmeric Sea salt, to taste
2 tablespoons raw cashews Freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 Broccoli head, cut into small florets 1 tablespoon Coconut flakes
1 cup Red cabbage, finely chopped 1 teaspoon Fresh orange zest
2 tablespoons San-J Sweet & Tangy Sauce


1. Cook quinoa according to package directions. Add the turmeric to the cooking water and mix well.

2. Toast the coconut flakes in the oven for 5 minutes or until toasted on the edges. Remove from the oven and set aside.

3. Toast the cashews in the oven for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and set aside.

4. Steam the broccoli in a medium pot with a steamer basket for 8-10 minutes or until the broccoli is tender and bright green.

5. In a large bowl, combine the cooked quinoa with the toasted cashews, broccoli, cabbage, San-J Sweet & Tangy Sauce, cayenne pepper, sea salt and pepper; toss to combine.

6. Garnish with coconut flakes and orange zest (a squeeze of orange juice is good too) and serve immediately.

With San-J, I know that I can keep my family safe, while preparing them a delicious meal. With just one bottle of San-J sauce, I could find plenty of recipes to keep practicing until I perfect this style of cooking gluten free too!


Holly Yzquierdo started blogging in 2012 after switching to a plant-based diet to overcome health issues. My Plant-Based Family is focused on allergy-friendly, whole food that won’t break the budget. Each week brings a new family-friendly meal plan with regular healthy living tips and recipes.