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(Family Features) A salad can fill an empty stomach for nearly any purpose, from an alfresco snack to a family appetizer. When combined with protein like chicken, a salad can become a full, nutritious meal all on its own.

If you’re looking for a way to take your salad from snack or side to a savory main course, consider this High-Protein Chicken, Onion, and Quinoa Salad with its own handmade dressing. Ready in less than 30 minutes, it calls for a handful of everyday ingredients including sauteed onions as a key ingredient for added flavor.

In fact, onions can be called nature’s ninja because of their many “skills.” Onions add abundant flavor to a wide variety of foods with just 45 calories per serving as a source of dietary fiber, vitamin C, vitamin B6, potassium and other key nutrients such as folate, calcium, and iron. They are also rich in heart-healthy nutrients and have been shown to help prevent some cancers.

Visit onions-usa.org for more recipe ideas.

High-Protein Chicken, Onion and Quinoa Salad

Recipe courtesy of the National Onion Association

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes

Servings: 6

Dressing:

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon honey

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 1/2 cups red quinoa, rinsed

2 1/2 cups vegetable broth

1 teaspoon canola oil

1 white onion, sliced

3 cups baby kale

1 red skinned apple, chopped

2 cups cooked chicken, chopped

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

To make dressing: In bowl, whisk vinegar, olive oil, lemon juice, honey and Dijon mustard until well combined. Set aside.

In saucepan, bring quinoa and broth to boil. Simmer, covered, 12-15 minutes, or until broth has been absorbed. Cool completely.

In medium skillet, heat canola oil over medium-high heat. Saute onion 3-5 minutes, or until softened and translucent. Remove from heat; cool completely.

In large bowl, toss onion, kale, apple, chicken, salt and pepper with dressing. Stir in cooled quinoa.

Nutritional information per serving: 407 calories, 36.5 g protein, 11.6 g fat, 39 g carbohydrates, 297 mg sodium, 4.2 g fiber.