Cumin, Cilantro, Black Beans and Quinoa make for a light tasting summer salad xo

Yesterday someone asked me why I gave up animal products and it was a genuine question, I loved answering their question.  Most people automatically assume it’s an animal rights decision and then typically they get defensive, or feel guilty, poke fun at me,  question my protein needs, or even tell me I’m downright stupid. I loved being asked why I made such a major lifestyle change, if the question is real, however if I’m asked because someone wants to poke holes in my lifestyle it leaves me feeling a bit disappointed.

I am not an activist, I have chosen a path that for now keeps me evolving and growing spiritually. I don’t push my views on others, I just share my experiences. I am not a natural vegetarian, although I do love veggies, I grew up eating meat and loved it. I liked pork, beef, and chicken. I  loved lamb and ate all kinds of seafood.  So the decision to become plant based was a tough one, but one that I will never regret, 5 years later, I am thinner, fitter and have better energy than I had 30 years ago.  I enjoy long days working with my clients and still have energy to run, work out and spend time with friends, at 54 I am feeling better than I did in my 30’s and 40’s.

It’s true what they say that age is a state of mind. Getting older doesn‘t have to mean slowing down (unless of course you want too). There are so many benefits to aging, the peace of mind, the ability to speak your truth and the sense of contentment that comes with age, is amazing. I have never in my life been more content with who I am. The added benefit is that I am healthy and fit, so I enjoy an active lifestyle .

Being open minded is amazing, it allows you to accept new concepts, embrace change and evolve .


I love this easy recipe, its light tasting and the lime and cilantro are a divine combination. I made this and ate it all weekend. It’s another Oh She Glows recipe, that I found online by Googling ; quinoa, black beans, vegan. Not sure if it’s in her cook book (which I love).

Cumin Lime Black Bean Quinoa Salad

cumin salad

Makes 6.5 cups (or serves 4)

For the salad:

1 cup uncooked quinoa (or 3 cups cooked)

1 (15-ounce) can black beans (or 1.5 cups cooked), drained and rinsed

1.5 cups cilantro, finely chopped

3 small/medium carrots, julienned (about 1.5 cups) OR 1 large chopped and roasted sweet potato

4 green onions, chopped

fine grain sea salt & black pepper, to taste

For the dressing:

3 tablespoons fresh lime juice (about 1 lime)

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 large clove garlic, minced (or 1/2 tsp garlic powder)

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon pure maple syrup (or other liquid sweetener)

1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt

  1. To prepare the quinoa: Rinse quinoa in a fine mesh sieve. Add into pot along with 1.5 cups water or veggie broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low-medium, and then cover with a tight-fitting lid. Simmer for 15-17 minutes until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is fluffy. Remove from heat and steam with the lid on for 5 additional minutes. Fluff with fork and chill in the fridge for at least 15 minutes.
  2. In a large bowl, toss the quinoa, drained and rinsed black beans, cilantro, carrots (or roasted sweet potato), and green onions.
  3. Whisk together the dressing in a small bowl or jar. Pour onto salad and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste. I prefer to enjoy this salad chilled, so I usually throw it into the fridge for at least an hour. This is a great make-ahead salad too – prep it the night before and let it sit in the fridge for up to 24 hours.

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