Warm Quinoa Salad with Spinach, Poached Eggs, and Caramelized Onions Recipe

By Marcus Samuelsson |

Today I woke up to a chilly San Francisco morning, a gray day after a week of sun. The weather lately gives me a funny in-between feeling-some days feel like pure spring and some feel like we never left winter. Crossing the Golden Gate Bridge on Thursday, the sun was out and shining but a crisp cold wind was tossing up hair and hats, making bikers swerve on their paths and chopping up the waves underneath. Ahh, the bay.


So…after a long week of work, I relished sleeping in and lazily preparing my first real meal of the day. As I do most weekend mornings, I craved eggs, but I wanted something heartier and healthier than the usual brunch fare since I’d been eating a lot of junk on-the-go during the week. I found this dish extremely satisfying because of the combination of proteins (quinoa is an easy-to-digest, complete protein), the greens, and the sweetness from the onions.

(A note on poaching the eggs: I used a couple of silicone egg poacher dishes, since I wouldn’t know the first thing about proper poaching without them, but they are not necessary if you know how.)


Prep Details

Servings: 1


1 cup quinoa

2 cups vegetable stock

4 tbsp olive oil

1/2 white onion, slivered

1/2 tsp honey

2 eggs

Roughly 3 cups spinach

Salt and pepper


Photo: Madeleine Ignon

1. In a medium saucepan, combine the quinoa and vegetable stock over medium-high heat. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until all the moisture has absorbed into the grain. Remove from the heat and season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

2. Heat a medium-sized skillet over medium heat and add 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add the onions and sautee until browned, about 15-20 minutes. After 10 minutes, add the honey. Remove from the heat, set aside.

3. Heat up a deep pan of water to poach the eggs. Bring the water to a boil, then add the eggs (with a dab of olive oil at the bottom of the poacher dishes if you're using them) and cover. The eggs take about 5 minutes to cook all the way through.

4. When the quinoa is almost ready and the onions are almost browned, sautee the spinach. Heat a medium-sized skillet over medium heat. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add the spinach and cook until limp, about 3-5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

5. Combine the onions, spinach, quiona and eggs. Season with sea salt and pepper.