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Quinoa with turkey, pomegranate & citrus herb sauce

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Ottolenghi's roast turkey repurposed

This recipe starts with Ottolenghi's turkey thighs with lemon herb sauce. I roast a couple extra turkey thighs and double the sauce so I can make this quinoa the next day. This recipe will serve roast turkey for 4 people on the first night and quinoa for another 4 people the second night.

3-part recipe over 3 nights - or make all on same night

I have written this recipe to include the turkey, the sauce and the quinoa, but you will greatly simplify the effort by dividing the tasks into three steps on three nights:

  • On first night, make marinade and allow turkey to marinate overnight. If you don't have the time, try to marinate at least a couple hours.
  • On the second night, roast the turkey and reduce the residual marinade to make a sauce. Reserve leftover turkey and sauce for the quinoa the next night.
  • On the third night, make the quinoa.

Alternatively, you can do all three steps in one night. Excluding the overnight marinate, the time for both meals combined is about 2 hours: 40 minutes of preparation and 80 minutes of cooking time.

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A note on the texture of the sauce

If you compare the pictures from Ottolenghi's turkey thighs with lemon herb sauce you will see that I left the herbs a little chunkier, compared to the pictures in this recipe where I blitz the marinade in the food processor until the herbs were very fine and the marinade is smooth. You can do it either way, the taste is the same, but I prefer the texture of the smoother sauce.


Quinoa is a versatile grain-like seed that can be used like rice, pasta or couscous. It is a great alternative for people who are gluten-free. See my post for all you need to know about quinoa.


Fresh pomegranate seeds give this savory dish bright bursts of flavor. Hate to seed pomegranates? So did I until I discovered this easy method to quickly seed pomegranates without the mess.


Quinoa with turkey, pomegranate & citrus herb sauce

Get two meals using Ottolenghi’s simple roast turkey with citrus and herb sauce repurposed to also make a quinoa, with turkey and pomegranates. The result is two economical, gluten-free healthy meals.

  • Author: Something New For Dinner
  • Prep Time: 40 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hours 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hours 60 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x


  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 handfuls of mint leaves, big stems removed
  • 2 handfuls of flat leaf parsley, big stems removed
  • 2 handfuls of cilantro
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup olive oil plus 1 T olive oil
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1 1/2 t ground cumin, divided
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 turkey thighs
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 onion, cut in thinly sliced rings
  • 3 ribs celery
  • 3 ounces fresh baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup toasted walnuts
  • 1 cup pomegranate seeds
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. On the first night: Put your garlic cloves in a food processor and blitz. Add herbs and blitz again. Add lemon juice, olive oil, wine, cumin, salt and pepper and blitz again.
  2. Put turkey thighs in a plastic bag and pour the marinade over. Remove as much air as possible and seal the bag. Massage the bag so the marinade coats the turkey and is really worked into the meat. Put it in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours, the longer the better.
  3. Heat oven to 425 degrees. Remove the turkey from the marinade and reserve. Roast the turkey for 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to 350 and continue to roast for another 45 minutes.
  4. Remove the turkey from the oven. If you plan to serve the turkey hot, let stand for 10 minutes before you slice it. If you are planning to serve at room temperature, allow the turkey to cool completely before slicing.
  5. Meanwhile, put the residual marinade into a saucepan and bring just to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 15 minutes, until the marinade is reduced by about half. (Note, this will take about twice as long as the Ottolenghi’s roast turkey recipe because you are reducing twice as much sauce.)
  6. If serving the turkey hot, also serve the sauce hot. If serving the turkey at room temperature, also serve the sauce at room temperature. Refrigerate extra turkey and sauce for the quinoa the next night.
  7. Put quinoa and chicken stock in a pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer covered for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let rest 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and set aside.
  8. While quinoa is cooking put remaining 1 T olive oil in a skillet. Saute onion rings and celery on medium high heat until soft and beginning to caramelize. Stir frequently. Add spinach to onions and celery and stir in until just wilted.
  9. Fluff quinoa with a fork and put into a large bowl. Add onion, celery and spinach mixture, walnuts, pomegranates and toss with 1/4 cup residual sauce. Season with salt and pepper. Serve in individual bowls. Top each bowl with a spoonful of sauce.

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