This recipes comes together for a quick, balanced weeknight meal. A favorite 10 minute recipe from The 3-2-1 Method Meal Plans it is packed with protein, fiber, fresh vegetables and herbs.
The freshness of the mint
The crisp bite of the cucumber and yellow pepper
The flavor of that perfectly browned ground turkey
All enveloped with the salty, tangy goodness of a super simple Thai sauce…
I’m drooling just thinking about it. haha! This Thai Turkey Quinoa Salad is a weeknight meal you will crave!
One of my favorite things about this recipe is I swear the leftovers are even better! The quinoa and ground turkey marinate in the sauce and soak up the flavors to create one flavor packed lunch!
This recipe has long been a favorite from The 321 Method Meal Plans. It popped up in the Facebook Group the other day and it got me craving it! So I grabbed the groceries and whipped it up and I just had to share it with you here too!
Note: As this recipe is pulled from the meal plans, which provide simple weekly meal prep instructions – it assumes that the core ingredients have already been prepped. I’ve also included instructions in the recipe notes if you’re starting from scratch as well!
That being said, I can’t recommend enough getting a couple of meal components prepped on the weekends! It makes dinners SO much quicker, drastically reduces clean up and prevents those veggies from sitting in the crisper, never getting used. haha you know what I’m talking about!
Tip: I find that having a few meal ideas on hand frees up time for more precious family time, so I’ve created a list of my well-balanced meal recipes for you here!
Meal Prep Tips:
What are the benefits of meal prep?
You know when you get home from work, and the last thing you want to do is decide “what’s for dinner?!”, let alone have to start cooking from scratch?! I can relate to this more than ever with a busy little toddler running around these days! haha.
But I know that the idea of meal prep can be daunting. I promise you it doesn’t have to be complicated, time consuming or boring. In fact the more simple the better.
The concept of The 321 Method is to prep just a few core meal ingredients (3 vegetables, 2 proteins, 1 carbohydrate) at the beginning of the week so that they’re ready to throw together for almost instant meals. Your prepped ingredients can then be mixed and matched with “Fast Foods” (whole food ingredients that take little to no extra time to prep) for endless combinations!
Time saving tip:
- Start with the ingredient with the most hands off time (usually the grain or carb)
- While it cooks, move on to prepping other ingredients (I recommend protein next)
- Finish by washing and cutting up your veggies while the other ingredients finish cooking.
By using the 3-2-1 Method and following this order of prep, you can be done in an hour and enjoy 10-20 minute meals all week!
Ingredients from this recipe that you can prep ahead:
Prepare extra of each to be used in other recipes throughout the week. See ideas below.
I always recommend prepping a batch of some form of high fiber grain to have on hand for the week. Grains are so versatile! Cook and store in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer to pull out as needed for the week.
And here’s a video for you on The Easiest Way to Meal Prep Quinoa!
Prep ahead and keep in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 4 days. If you’d like to use it later in the week, just pop it in the freezer and take it out the night before and you’re ready to go for a super speedy meal!
I’ve got a little trick that makes bell peppers last all week. Wrap your cut up peppers with paper towel of a reusable cloth (we rip up old tea towels into large napkin sizes) before packing them up. This will help absorb any extra moisture and prevent them from getting soggy and slimy – no one wants that!
Other meal ideas for prepped bell peppers: Rainbow power salad, One Pan Greek Chicken with blistered Tomatoes and Peppers
What I love about recipes is that they’re just a template! Swapping like for like (protein for protein, veg for veg, carb for carb) you can pretty much swap or substitute any ingredient and end up with a successful meal! Whether you’re plant-based, gluten-free or just don’t like certain foods, there is most likely an alternative that will make this recipe work for you!
- Ground chicken or beef
- Crumbled tempeh or tofu
- Edamame Beans
I do particularly like this combo of veggies for this recipe but these others will also work!
- Snap Peas
- Red or orange bell peppers
Nutrition Benefits of Thai Turkey Quinoa Salad
The Plate Method
As a dietitian who is obsessed with delicious food I’m always finding ways I can add more veggies in and get that optimal balance to keep blood sugars stable and leave you feeling not just full but actually satisfied after a meal!
There are a few key components to this, but it actually has a name – The Plate Method.
- ½ Plate veggies: cucumber, bell peppers, mint
- ¼ plate high fiber carb: Quinoa
- ¼ plate protein: ground turkey
- Finish with Fat: Peanuts
I created this video to explain it in more detail!
Nutrition Benefits of Ingredients:
Ground Turkey: turkey is a great source of protein as well as minerals like iron an zinc, important for red blood cell formation and carrying oxygen through out body.
Bell Peppers: Bell peppers are powered with antioxidant Vitamin C, important for skin health and immune support.
Cucumber: Cucumbers are approximately 95% water which makes them a super hydrating veggie! They are also rich in micronutrients potassium and Vitamin K with, respectively, help regulate blood pressure and keep bones strong and healthy
Quinoa: The combination of the fiber and protein in this whole grain make for a slow digesting carbohydrate option. This means longer lasting fullness, energy and more stable blood sugars!
Looking for done-for-you meal plans? Check out The 3-2-1 Method! And don’t forget to join the Members Facebook Community for extra support and private access to me! Grab your meal plan here to get started today!Print
This recipes comes together for a quick, balanced weeknight meal. It is packed with protein, fiber, fresh vegetables and herbs for a filling satisfying meal!
Note: This recipe is from The 3-2-1 Method Meal Plans where some ingredients have been prepped ahead of time. If you don’t have anything prepped, it will take closer to 30 minutes but is still a simple meal to throw togehter! I’ve included instructions for both in the recipe below.
- 2 cups quinoa, cooked (approx 1/2 cup uncooked)
- 1 lb ground turkey, cooked
- 1–2 Tbsp olive oil (if prepping ground turkey from scratch)
- 3 Tbsp fish sauce
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 yellow pepper, cut into bite sized pieces
- 1 English cucumber, cut into cubes
- 1 cup fresh mint, roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup salted peanuts, coarsely chopped
- Juice of 2 lime
Note: If you don’t have your quinoa and ground turkey prepped ahead of time, see notes below for how to!
- To a medium-sized frying pan, add cooked ground turkey, fish sauce, sugar, and water. Heat, stirring until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 3-4 minutes
- Add cooked quinoa and stir to combine, cooking until heated through, 1-2 minutes
- Remove from heat and add peppers, cucumber and lime juice.
- Plate and top with chopped peanuts and a squeeze of lime if desired.
If prepping from scratch –
- Start with Quinoa:
- Cook quinoa according to package directions. Quinoa about quadruples in volume once cooked. Approx. 1/2 cup dry quinoa will yield 2 cups cooked.
- Next, Brown Turkey:
- Heat 1-2 Tbsp olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add ground turkey, breaking it up and spreading it out over the pan. Season with salt & pepper
- Let the turkey brown on the first side, 4-5 minutes. Don’t stir too frequently, this prevents the actually browning which is where all the flavor builds!
- Flip the turkey over to brown on the other side, breaking it up into pieces with a spoon
- Finish by washing & cutting up veggies & mint while quinoa & turkey cook.
- Ground turkey: ground chicken, ground beef, veggie ground round, lentils, crumbled tempeh or tofu, or edamame beans
- Quinoa: millet, couscous, rice
- Cucumber & Yellow Pepper: zucchini, radish, snap peas
- Substitute for Fish Sauce
- 1 1/2 Tbsp soy sauce + Juice of 1/2 -1 lime
- 1 1/2 Tbsp soy sauce + 1 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Category: Main
- Method: Stove Top
- Cuisine: Thai
Keywords: weeknight meal, turkey, quinoa, balanced meal