Crunchy Salad with Quinoa Pilaf & Citrus Vinaigrette: Product Review

bentgo collage

So as you all know, I’m a mommy, I’m busy with family and friends, I work full-time, and now with a little one on the way, what little time I have left to myself HAS to be spent in an organized manner.  Drew travels, so a morning routine is essential to get out the door with as little anxiety, panic (and let’s be honest, yelling) as possible.  I try to get up an hour or two before Hunter so that I can have some time to myself to either do a little work, work on my blog posts, do laundry and pick up or do some yoga or toning.  After that I hit the kitchen to get lunches prepared.  Hunter has is own bento that fits perfectly in his lunchbox and is proportioned perfectly for little guys, but for me taking lunch means several containers that take up lots of space in the work fridge because big momma needs a little more food than he does.

Eating healthy is super important to me and bringing my lunch and breakfast to work helps keep those last minute hunger indulgences to a minimum.  You know what I’m talking about, you sit at your desk working until you are just so hungry for lunch and aren’t sure what you want, so you get in your car trying to figure what sounds good, deal with lunchtime traffic and end up giving in with fast food, because well, it’s fast and it’s food.  If I did remember to bring my lunch, I have multiple containers that take awhile to open and put together until finally I get to eat, but then have a big clean up afterwards.  I was super excited to receive and try out the Bentgo lunchbox, because it solved all my lunch at work problems.  It offers a lot more room for my meal than Hunter’s little bento, but is still great to use since it has compartments AND since it stacks it takes up way less space in the work fridge.

Bentgo is putting out a new eCookbook that will have LOTS of healthy recipes and meal ideas that you can use with your Bentgo box.  They asked me to try out their product and come up with a recipe to be featured in their eCookbook.  Almost every lunch during the week for me involves a salad.  I try to make that my main meal with fruit or some other side, so I need my salad to be filling.  I usually have grilled chicken and brown rice to add a protein and something that is going to fill my growing tummy.  For my recipe for Bentgo and one that I will for sure be using for my weekly lunches, I came up with a salad that has crunch from fresh carrots, tasty sweet tomatoes because I LOVE tomatoes, and a quinoa pilaf for protein and the fill factor and then top it off with feta cheese and pecan chips.  The citrus vinaigrette for this salad is sweet and tangy and if I pour it on when I put it all together in the morning, the spring mix stays firm and doesn’t get soggy.  No matter where I eat this salad, the Bentgo has got me covered because it comes with utensils that stack within the boxes.  There is also a nylon strap that keeps it all in place.  I’m certain that I will be using this box for many weekday lunches, and since I’m doing lots of baby planning, I think this will be great to toss in the diaper bag with all sorts of baby snacks………whoo, can’t believe I just said that…….holy baby startover!

If you are interested in purchasing a Bentgo box, you can check out their products and colors here.

Crunchy Salad with Quinoa Pilaf & Citrus Vinaigrette

Crunchy Salad with Quinoa Pilaf &  Citrus Vinaigrette


    For the salad
  • Spring mix
  • Quinoa Pilaf (see below)
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 pint Nature Sweet Sunbursts Yellow Tomatoes
  • 2 ounces reduced fat Feta cheese
  • chopped pecans
  • Citrus Vinaigrette (see below)
  • For the Quinoa Pilaf
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup quinoa
  • 1/2 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Sunmaid Zante Currants
  • For the Citrus Vinaigrette
  • 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons agave nectar
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt & pepper to taste


  1. Place spring mix on two large plates. Top with quinoa, tomatoes, carrots, Feta cheese, pecan chips and drizzle with Citrus Vinaigrette.
  2. For the Quinoa Pilaf
  3. In a medium saucepan over high heat, combine chicken broth and quinoa. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for about 15 minute or until all liquid has been absorbed. Add red wine vinegar and currants.
  4. For the Citrus Vinaigrette
  5. In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients. Whisk together to combine. Season with salt & pepper.

Bentgo provided me with the products I reviewed in this post.  All thoughts and opinions are my own and may not reflect those of the company.

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