Grilled Quail with Pomegranate-Orange BBQ Sauce and Tabouli with Quinoa and Shredded Kale

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 2 hr 35 min (includes chilling time)
  • Active: 1 hr
  • Yield: 6 servings
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1 cup quinoa, rinsed well

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 

1 cup (1/2 pint) grape tomatoes, halved 

1/2 cup fresh mint leaves, finely chopped 

1 small bunch dinosaur kale, finely shredded 

1/2 English cucumber, cut into small dice 

1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced 

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil 

Zest of 1/2 and juice of 2 lemons 

Zest of 1/4 and juice of 1 orange 

Pomegranate-Orange BBQ Sauce:

2 tablespoons canola oil

1 small Spanish onion, diced 

1 cup pomegranate juice 

1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice 

1/4 cup pomegranate molasses 

1/4 cup red wine vinegar 

3 tablespoons light brown sugar 

2 cinnamon sticks 

Finely grated zest of 1 orange 

1/2 cup ketchup 

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard 

Kosher salt 

1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper 


12 quail, backbones and bottom leg joints removed, flattened, wings tucked

Canola oil, for brushing 

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 


  1. For the tabouli: Place the quinoa in a medium saucepan, cover with 1 3/4 cups cold water and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, cover, lower the heat and cook until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is tender, 18 to 20 minutes. Remove the lid, fluff with a fork and let cool slightly.
  2. Put the quinoa in a large bowl; add the tomatoes, mint, kale, cucumbers and onions and mix to combine. Whisk together the olive oil and lemon and orange zests and juices, and season with salt and pepper. Add the dressing to the salad and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving. The longer the salad sits the better the flavors become.
  3. For the pomegranate-orange BBQ sauce: Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat; add the onions and cook until soft. Add the pomegranate juice, orange juice, pomegranate molasses, vinegar, sugar, cinnamon sticks and orange zest and cook until reduced by half. Add the ketchup and cook for 15 minutes.
  4. Remove from the heat, whisk in the mustard, salt and pepper and let cool slightly. Remove the cinnamon sticks before using. Remove about 1 cup of the sauce for serving.
  5. For the quail: Heat the grill to medium high for direct grilling. Brush the quail with canola oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put breast-side down on the grill and cook about 3 minutes. Flip, brush with the barbecue sauce, cover the grill and cook another 3 to 4 minutes.
  6. Transfer to a platter and serve with the reserved barbecue sauce and the tabouli.
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