Quinoa Crusted California Avocado Salad

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Total Time:

1h 15min

Cook Time:


Prep Time:


Nutritional Highlights (per serving)

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66 g
Total Fat
43 g
Total Carbs
10 g
45 mg
 Quinoa Crusted California Avocado Salad

Fried food can be a polarizing preference, but this method for making quinoa-crusted California Avocados and pairing them with a tangy tomato relish offers new textures, techniques and unexpected flavors. This avocado salad provides daily values of 43% dietary fiber, 20% potassium, 20% protein, 50% vitamin C, 45% folate, 10% vitamin A and 15% iron.


Serves: 8
    Avocado Brine (see make ahead recipe below)
  firm-ripe, Fresh California Avocados, seeded, peeled and halved
cups  water
cup  red quinoa
cup  flour
1/2  tsp.  paprika
1/2  tsp.  black pepper
Tbsp.  lemon zest
cups  canola oil, or vegetable oil (for frying)
  heirloom tomatoes, medium, or beefsteak tomatoes
1/2  cup  extra virgin olive oil
    Tomato Relish (see make ahead recipe below)
  basil leaves, finely chopped
  dill sprigs, finely chopped
  parsley leaves, finely chopped
    Avocado Brine Ingredients:
2 1/2  Tbsp.  sea salt
cups  water
cup  lime juice
    Tomato Relish Ingredients:
1/2    yellow onion, diced
  clove garlic, peeled and minced
1/2    red bell pepper, diced
1/2  cup  extra virgin olive oil
1/2  Tbsp.  Calabrian chiles, or red serrano peppers, chopped
1/2  tsp.  ground coriander
1/2  tsp.  dried oregano
1 1/2  cups  vine ripe tomatoes, chopped
Tbsp.  sherry vinegar, or red wine vinegar

As with all fruits and vegetables, wash avocados before cutting. Check out our tips for how to choose and use California Avocados


  1. Soak halved avocados in Avocado Brine for 20 minutes.
  2. While avocados are soaking, bring water to boil, add quinoa and cook for 10 minutes. Drain and allow to cool.
  3. Remove avocados from brine and thoroughly dry.
  4. In large mixing bowl, mix flour, paprika, black pepper and lemon zest.
  5. In another mixing bowl, gently beat the eggs.
  6. Coat each avocado half in the seasoned flour then coat in egg mixture, followed by the quinoa last. Set aside.
  7. Heat canola or vegetable oil to 350 degrees F in a large pan and place the crusted avocado halves in to fry for about 3 minutes.
  8. Remove avocados and place on a wire rack or on a paper towel to dry and set aside. Cut each piece in half lengthwise.
  9. Cut tomatoes into large pieces and season with olive oil.
  10. Evenly spread a layer of the Tomato Relish on each plate.
  11. Evenly place tomatoes on plates and add 2 quarters of Quinoa Crusted Avocados.
  12. Sprinkle the salad with the fresh basil, dill and parsley and serve.

Avocado Brine Instructions:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a small pot and bring to boil for five minutes.
  2. Remove the brine from heat and let sit until room temperature.
  3. Set aside until ready for use.

Tomato Relish Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
  2. In a large oven-safe pot, cook the onions, garlic, peppers and 1/4 cup of olive oil on medium heat until deeply caramelized, about 20-30 minutes.
  3. Add chiles, coriander and oregano and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
  4. Add tomatoes to the mixture and place in the oven for 45 minutes or until the mixture cooks down.
  5. Add remaining olive oil and vinegar and let cool to room temperature.
  6. Set aside until ready to serve.

Serving Suggestion: Instead of serving as a salad, try slicing the avocados thinner to create bite-sized appetizers with tomato relish as a dipping sauce.

Beverage Pairing: The tang of the tomato relish combined with the avocado brine creates unique acidic flavors. Pair this with a similar minded white wine like Sauvignon Blanc or Riesling.

*Large avocados are recommended for this recipe. A large avocado averages about 8 ounces. If using smaller or larger size avocados adjust the quantity accordingly.

Calories 780
Total Fat 66 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Saturated Fat 9 g
Monounsaturated Fat 47 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 8 g
Total Carbs 43 g
Dietary Fiber 12 g
Total Sugar 5 g
Protein 10 g
Cholesterol 45 mg
Sodium 800 mg
Potassium 1014 mg

Vitamin A 100 mcg; Vitamin C 49 mg; Calcium 58 mg; Iron 3 mg; Vitamin D 0 mcg; Folate 171 mcg; Omega 3 Fatty Acid 0.85 g.

% Daily Value*: Vitamin A 10%; Vitamin C 50%; Calcium 4%; Iron 15%; Vitamin D 0%.

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 Calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Chef Brad Cecchi of Canon East

Brad Cecchi is the Executive Chef and Partner of Canon, a fine-dining destination in East Sacramento offering unexpected dishes in an unpretentious setting. Since opening its doors eighteen months ago, Canon has earned several accolades, including a 4-star review from the Sacramento Bee and coverage in national outlets, such as Travel & Leisure and Sunset Magazine.

Previously, Cecchi was the Chef de Cuisine then Executive Chef at SolBar, the eight-time Michelin Star-winning restaurant set within Calistoga’s luxurious Solage Resort and Spa. During his tenure, Solbar earned a Michelin Star both in 2016 and 2017.

He credits the confidence it took to start his first restaurant, Canon, from his on-the-job training in Calistoga along with what he learned from the ambitious job of opening a 200-seat farm-to-table steakhouse and running room service for a 484 room hotel: the Urban Farmer within the Westin in downtown Cleveland. There, he served as Executive Chef and was responsible for $15 million in annual food and beverage sales.

Brad started his culinary career in his native Sacramento. He helped open Mulvaney\’s B&L, served as the chef de cuisine under Michael Tuohy, and then, Oliver Ridgeway at The Citizen Hotels’ Grange, and got his cooking chops through the Culinary Arts program at American River College and later at the Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park. He’s excited to be back home, and to be part of Sacramento’s evolving culinary scene. He lives in East Sacramento with his wife Mackenzie, their 1-year-old daughter Wallis, and their two dogs Reggie & Freddie.

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