For the ultimate power lunch, (or dinner!) make this delicious protein, fiber, and nutrition packed recipe for kale quinoa salad.

A colorful array of super foods dressed with a bright and tangy dressing provides a feast of sweet and nutty flavors and textures.

You might come to this recipe for the health, but you’ll stay for the taste! Kale and quinoa salad just might become your family’s favorite side dish of all time!

Kale Quinoa Salad with nuts

Hearty Kale Quinoa Salad

  • Who says healthy eating means less comfort or satisfaction? This fresh, Mediterranean-style dish will fill you up and keep you going strong without weighing you down.
  • Robust kale salad holds up in the refrigerator. Make it ahead and let the flavors blend.
  • This super food salad can stand on its own as a hearty, healthy lunch, thanks to its superb balance of ingredients.
  • Gluten-free, vegan, and keto-friendly kale salad can be customized to suit your taste or what you have on hand. Add black beans, corn, broccoli, walnuts, or pecans.
  • Versatile kale quinoa salad goes great with air fryer chicken, roast beef, or baked salmon.
kale to make Kale Quinoa Salad

Ingredients & Variations

Kale – Fresh, whole leaf kale is best for this recipe, so you can slice out the tough stems. The bagged, pre-chopped variety can work in a pinch, although these often include the stems, which are difficult to remove.

Quinoa – Quinoa has a mild nutty flavor similar to corn, but less sweet. Either white or tricolor quinoa will work. In a pinch, couscous, orzo, or even corn can be substituted.

EdamameThis fresh, green soybean has a mild flavor and buttery smooth texture. You can substitute any bean, such as chickpeas, black, or red beans if you wish.

Tomatoes Use grape or cherry tomatoes. Sun gold cherry tomatoes are especially sweet and will taste great with the pleasantly pungent kale.

Mangoes – Look for fresh, ripe mangoes free of spots. Alphonso mangoes, which are small and uniformly gold are considered among the juiciest and tastiest mangoes with a smooth, firm texture.

Avocado – Avocados should be ripe and free of black spots. Haas variety with the dark bumpy skin is often believed to have a superior texture to the larger Indian variety, which are brighter green and smooth skinned.

Pepitas – Give your salad a nutty crunch with this tasty garnish. You can add or substitute sunflower seeds, walnuts, or pecans if you desire.

Variations – This is a salad recipe, which means anything goes! Add or substitute other greens, such as spinach, Romaine lettuce, or broccoli. Can’t find good mangoes in winter? Switch them out for fresh apple chunks of cooked sweet potatoes, or dried cranberries. For more tangy flavor, add feta crumbles, or parmesan cheese shavings. Try other zesty dressings like Italian or Caesar.

plated Kale Quinoa Salad with a fork

How to make a Kale Quinoa Salad

  1. In a large salad bowl, combine the chopped kale and onions with the cooked and cooled quinoa and edamame as described in the recipe below.
  2. Blend all the dressing ingredients, and toss with the salad.
  3. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until cold.
  4. Toss with the tomatoes, mango and avocado.
  5. Sprinkle with toasted pepitas.

Serve cold with a loaf of warm no-knead bread.

How to Make a Lemon Dressing

  1. Mince the garlic, chop basil leaves and squeeze the lemons. One medium lemon is usually enough to yield ¼ cup of juice.
  2. Whiz all the ingredients in a blender or food processor (as per the recipe below).
  3. Use immediately or store in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.


If you plan to have leftovers, then do not dress the greens, and leave out the mango, tomatoes, and avocados. Store the kale, quinoa, and edamame mixture in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 3-4 days.

easy Kale Quinoa Salad in a bowl aKale Quinoa Salad with tomatoes

Tips & Tricks

  • Cut the stems out of the kale leaves before assembling the salad.
  • Make the dressing up to a day in advance to allow the flavors to deepen and develop.
  • Kale leaves are chewy even with the stems removed. If you find them too tough for your taste, try lightly steaming or blanching them before adding to the salad.

More Healthy Salads

Did you try this recipe for Kale Quinoa Salad? Leave a comment and rating below!

closeup of Kale Quinoa Salad in a white bowl with tomatoes, quinoa, mangos and pumpkin seeds in a white bowl
5 from 8 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Kale Quinoa Salad

Kale quinoa salad is a super easy kale salad recipe, and it's deliciously healthy.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Chilling Time 20 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Candace


  • 2 cups cooked quinoa cooled (cook according to package directions), approximately ¾ cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 ½ cup edamame beans cooked and cooled
  • 3 cups kale finely chopped (ribs removed)
  • ¼ red onion diced (optional)
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes sliced
  • 1 mango pitted and chopped
  • 1 avocado pitted and chopped (or sliced)
  • 3 Tablespoon pepitas also known as pumpkin seeds, toasted, (optional). Or use other optional seeds or nuts.

For Dressing:

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • ¼ cup lemon juice freshly squeezed
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 6 leaves basil chopped (substitute 1 teaspoon dry basil)
  • teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper or to taste


  • Place all dressing ingredients in a bullet blender, blender, or food processor. Blend for 15-30 seconds until well mixed.
  • In a large bowl, mix cooked and cooled quinoa, edamame, and kale together. Add dressing and toss together. Refrigerate 30 minutes (or until serving) to allow flavors to blend.
  • A few minutes before serving time, add onions, tomatoes, mango, and avocado. Serve and sprinkle with toasted pepitas.


  • Cut the stems out of the kale leaves before assembling the salad.
  • Kale leaves can be too chewy, even after the stems have been removed. To soften kale, steam or blanch it, then cool completely before adding to the salad.
  • Refrigerate leftovers for 3-4 days. 
5 from 8 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 433 | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 108mg | Potassium: 1146mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 5930IU | Vitamin C: 95.9mg | Calcium: 148mg | Iron: 4.6mg

Nutrition information does not include optional ingredients or garnish and is an estimate. It may change based on actual ingredients and cooking methods used.

Course Salad
Cuisine American

Like our recipes?
Follow us on Pinterest!

Follow us on Pinterest

REPIN this Kale Quinoa Salad Recipe

close up of Kale Quinoa Salad in a bowl with a title
close up of Kale Quinoa Salad with nuts and a title
bowl of Kale Quinoa Salad with nuts and a title
plated Kale Quinoa Salad with writing
close up of Kale Quinoa Salad with writing
Kale Quinoa Salad in a bowl and close up with a title

This recipe is adapted from Ambitious Kitchen.


, ,

Recipes you'll love

About the author

I am a wife, mother of two, and professional accountant. I love fantastic food, and it is so often the center of our lives, from everyday dinner, to family gatherings, and special evenings at fabulous restaurants. I have always loved cooking and baking, with my mom and grandma, and now, with my daughter and son. I love trying new recipes while enjoying my favorites too. I’m so happy to share them with you.
See more posts by Candace

latest & greatest

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I love everything about this delicious salad!! Great time saving tip to chop the kale small instead of massage!