Taco Salad with Zesty Lime Vinaigrette
This salad is hearty enough to serve as a main entrée, thanks to the use of whole-grain barley and black beans, which are both loaded with fiber and plant-based protein. Paired with a zesty lime vinaigrette and your favorite taco toppings, this meal is bursting with bright flavors. Every bite is interesting, which keeps you coming back for more. Chop the vegetables for the salad while the barley is cooking to save time.
Servings Prep Time
6servings 5minutes
Cook Time
Servings Prep Time
6servings 5minutes
Cook Time
  • 1cup barley
  • 1cup Water
  • 1tsp ground cumin
  • 1tsp chili powder
  • 1/2cup prepared salsa
  • 1/2tsp fine sea salt
  • 1 1/2cups cooked or canned black beans
  • 2 romaine heartschopped
  • 2cups shredded red cabbage
  • 1cup cherry tomatoeshalved
  • 1/2cup Chopped green onionstender white and green parts only
  • 1/2cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2cup crumbled feta or shredded Cheddar cheese
  • Avocado slicesfor garnish
  • 1/4cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3tbsp raw apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4cup squeezed lime juice
  • 3tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1 clove garlicminced
  • 1tsp ground cumin
  • 1/8tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2tsp fine sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  1. Combine the barley, water, cumin, chili powder, salsa, and salt in the Instant Pot and stir to combine. Secure the lid and move the steam release valve to Sealing. Select Manual/Pressure Cook and cook on high pressure for 20 minutes. Let the pressure naturally release for 10 minutes.
  2. While the barley is cooking, prepare the vinaigrette. In a pint-sized mason jar, combine the olive oil, vinegar, lime juice, maple syrup, garlic, cumin, cayenne, salt, and several grinds of pepper. Screw on the lid and shake vigorously to combine. Set aside.
  3. When the screen reads L0:10, move the steam release valve to Venting to release any remaining pressure. When the floating valve drops, remove the lid and stir in the black beans to create the taco “meat.” (If using canned beans, drain and rinse them first.)
  4. To serve, place the romaine, cabbage, tomatoes, green onions, cilantro, and barley and black bean mixture in a serving bowl. Generously drizzle the lime vinaigrette on top, add a sprinkling of cheese and avocadeo slices, and serve right away. Store leftovers in three separate airtight containers—one each for the “meat,” the dressing, and the chopped vegetables—in the fridge for 5 days.
Recipe Notes


Replace the barley with 1 cup rinsed quinoa. Cook at high pressure for only 1 minute, then let the pressure naturally release for 15 minutes before venting.