Home > Recipes > Kale Quinoa Salad with Pomegranate
February 6, 2020

by Alyssa Rimmer

Kale Quinoa Salad with Pomegranate

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This kale quinoa salad with pomegranate is easy to make, packed with flavor and healthy ingredients! We've got kale, quinoa, walnuts, chickpeas and more!

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When I was walking through the store the other day and saw a pomegranate, I knew exactly what I was going to make! I wanted to make a light and healthy salad with pomegranate that was high in protein (so it was actually filling), wouldn't take long to make, and would look pretty enough to serve at a party!

So what I actually did was revamp an old recipe on the blog, giving it new flavors and new photos.

We ended up with a kale quinoa salad combo that works super well. It uses fluffy white quinoa, combined with finely chopped kale, sweet pomegranate seeds, walnuts and finished with a creamy tahini dressing. It's tangy, it's sweet, it's easy to make and it tastes damn GOOD!

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My Go-To Tahini Dressing

When I was initially planning this recipe, it was a toss-up on the dressings. I didn't know if I should go with one that was oil-based or one that was creamy-based.

Surprise, surprise, I went creamy!

I've been a longtime fan of tahini dressings and this one is go-to. I feel like I've probably talked about it before on the blog, but why not recap it again since we're here, right? So here it goes…

The ingredients for my go-to tahini dressing are:

  • Tahini (I like toasted)
  • White wine vinegar (although red wine & apple cider also work well)
  • Lemon juice
  • Garlic (fresh or dried)
  • Pepper flakes

And then just a bit of salt and pepper to round things out. Easy peasy! If this doesn't strike your fancy, I actually have a whole post dedicated to tahini dressings. Check out this post for how to make tahini dressing: 4 different ways!

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Ingredients for our Kale Quinoa Salad

For our salad, we're only using a few ingredients in our base. I picked these ingredients for a few reasons: taste, texture, and nutrition. We've got lots of protein and fiber in here to make sure this salad actually sticks with you AND it's got the perfect balance of sweet/savory, with just the right amount of crunch.

In addition to our tahini dressing, here's what we're using to make our salad:

  • Cooked quinoa: I like to use white quinoa for my salads because it's nice and fluffy. If you don't have white quinoa or have another variety, that will totally work as well. Red, rainbow, black or white can all be swapped out interchangeably.
  • Chopped kale: I like how kale holds up in salads like this, but you could also use another green if you so prefer! I think spinach, arugula, and even romaine would work well here.
  • Crispy chickpeas: for this salad, I went with store-bought crispy chickpeas, but they're also a cinch to make at home. Try this recipe for crispy chickpeas if you've got the time!
  • Pomegranate seeds: most of the time you can actually find pre-seeded pomegranates and that's what I did here (#lazybones!), but it's definitely cheaper to just buy a pomegranate. Either way, it's adding color, sweetness, and pop to this kale quinoa salad!
  • Chopped walnuts: last but not least our little dose of heatlhy fats! I love using walnuts because of their earthy flavor and kind of meaty texture, but you can totally swap these out for another nut or seed.

And with that tangy, slightly spicy dressing, it's just perfect!

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How to Make this Kale Quinoa Salad

Quinoa salads are super simple to make, especially if you have some cooked quinoa on hand. I typically call for cooked quinoa in my salad recipes because it's better to use cold quinoa. If the quinoa is warm and it gets mixed with other ingredients, it tends to get a little mushy and clumpy.

So…if you have some cooked quinoa on hand, awesome! And if you don't just make some and then let it cool before using it.

Now, let's see how to make this salad!

STEP 1

I like to start by making the dressing. You just whisk everything together and let it sit while you make the rest of the salad.

STEP 2

Assemble your salad ingredients! Make sure to finely chop up your kale, chop up your walnuts and measure everything else out. Once you've got that, add them into a mixing bowl.

STEP 3

Next, just pour that dressing right over your salad ingredients and toss it all together!

STEP 4

Time to enjoy! Whether you're eating this as its own meal, serving it as a side or topping it with your favorite protein, it's absolutely scrumptious!

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Why You'll Love This Salad with Pomegranate

There's so much to love about this salad! For starters, it's a cinch to make. You just have to make your dressing, chop your kale and walnuts, and toss everything together.

In addition to ease, it's also:

  • Vegan & gluten-free
  • Easily nut-free by using pumpkin/sunflower seeds instead of walnuts
  • Packed with protein (13g/serving!)
  • Packed with fiber (10g/serving)
  • Great for meal prep (keeps for up to 5 days)
  • Perfect as a side dish or protein flexible meal!

I mean really, is there anything more gorgeous than a salad with pomegranate on top!? I know you're going to adore this recipe and I can't wait to see your recreations!

 

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More Quinoa Salad Recipes to try:

Kale Quinoa Salad with Pomegranate

This healthy kale quinoa salad with pomegranate is easy to make, packed with flavor and full of good-for-you ingredients! We've got kale, quinoa, walnuts, chickpeas and more!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 373kcal
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Ingredients

for the salad:

for the dressing:

  • 1 tablespoon tahini
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1 garlic clove , grated (or 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder)
  • Pinch of pepper flakes
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Add all the salad ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Set aside.
  • In a separate bowl, combine all the dressing ingredients. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss thoroughly to combine.
  • Allow the salad to sit for 10 - 15 minutes and then serve. Keep in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Nutrition

Serving: 1.5cups | Calories: 373kcal | Carbohydrates: 50g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 26mg | Potassium: 691mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 3347IU | Vitamin C: 48mg | Calcium: 113mg | Iron: 4mg
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About Alyssa

Hey there, I’m Alyssa Rimmer, a certified Holistic Nutritionist, yoga-lover, dog mom, and founder of Simply Quinoa. It’s nice to meet you! I created SQ as a way to provide solutions for women just like me, who were struggling to find helpful information about how to live a healthy and fulfilled life. My hope is that you will find inspiration here on SQ – in my story, in my recipes, in the hundreds of wellness articles, and in our amazing community. Welcome!

Interested in Healthy Eating? Grab our 7-Day Vegan Meal Plan!

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  1. Hi Lori! Thanks for the kind words. The Cleanse is definitely a great way to start a gluten-free diet. It will not only help you see the amazing effects of eating a gluten-free and dairy-free diet, but hopefully you'll be able to pinpoint if you have any other sensitivities.

    Quinoa flakes are great. I use them in burgers to serve as a binding agent, in crumbles, in cookies, in granola and even as hot cereal. They're great. I also adore their pasta although most of Ancient Harvest's pasta has corn in it, so it's a no-go on Clean.

    Check out my recipe for Quinoa Burgers, they're super tasty!
    http://queenofquinoa.blogspot.com/2011/10/vegan-quinoa-burgers.html

  2. Great recipe. I am just beginning my search for gluten-free veggies dishes since I am going to start the Clean cleanse. This sounds like a winner. Can' wait to try this. Any ideas of what one can do with Quinoa FLakes? I used to add it to my oatmeal giving it a nutty flavor.

    FYI: Ancient Harvest makes some great Quinoa Pasta.

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