This Arugula Quinoa Salad is packed with wholesome ingredients. It’s refreshing; it’s filling, and simply delicious.
What’s your favorite salad for special days? I personally love a hearty combination of peppery arugula and protein-packed quinoa.
And today I’ll be sharing my delightful quinoa arugula salad recipe because I want you to enjoy all the good things in life.
What I love about this salad recipe is the use of simple ingredients. You’ll easily find all the ingredients in a grocery store. There’s nothing fancy in there, yet it tastes no less than a party.
It’s earthy and light but also satisfying and so well-balanced.
You can put this salad on the table as a side dish with protein mains like grilled chicken, pork chops, or turkey. Veggie burgers are a good option, too.
Or you can simply dress it with your favorite salad dressing and make it your stand-alone dish. It pairs wonderfully with a zesty lemon vinaigrette. You can also try honey mustard or a simple lemon squeeze.
If you’re ready to whip up this arugula quinoa salad recipe, scroll down to find the details.
Salad Ingredients–What You Need
Arugulas belong to the same family as mustard greens. They have a spicy, nutty flavor and smell similar to black pepper. If you’re not a spinach person, no worries!
Baby arugula will give you your share of vitamins B, K, and C. It is also loaded with Calcium and Potassium.
Don’t expect a loud crunch when you bite into a baby arugula. It’s more toward the tender side. We will use ten ounces of fresh baby arugula for this recipe. It’ll easily yield eight servings.
This plant-based protein beefs up your salad recipe. Really. It’ll make it so filling. You can use any uncooked quinoa you have – red quinoa or regular white quinoa.
Also, let your cooked, fluffy quinoa cool completely before mixing it with baby arugula. Hot quinoa will make your salad soft. We need 3 cups of cooked quinoa, that’s about 1 cup of dry quinoa.
You can cook your quinoa according to the package directions, or use my How to Cook Quinoa guide!
Extra flavor tip: when you cook it, use vegetable broth instead of water.
What’s tiny and sweet with a perfect acidic balance? Grape tomatoes. They are the smaller version of cherry tomatoes. And yes, you can use them interchangeably. When you add ten ounces of grape tomatoes to this recipe, you’re adding a ton of vitamins A and C along with it.
Also, antioxidants and lycopene. Your heart and overall health will love you for it. Plus, the vibrant red hues will really make your salad stand out. Oh, and tomatoes are perfect for a low-calorie diet.
For the love of crunchy bites and health benefits, we will be using half a cup of almonds. You can use any seed or nut that’s available. Sunflower seeds, hemp seeds, crunchy walnuts, and pecans are all good options. You can even try sweet golden raisins – no harm in playing with flavors.
Crumbled goat cheese adds a subtle sweetness with a little tang and a creamy texture to the salad. Feta cheese or any soft cheese can be substituted. If you’d prefer, leave off the cheese and this will be a delicious vegan salad.
Of course, we need a delicious homemade dressing for the salad. Let’s dress it with a yummy Lemon Dijon Dressing. You’ll need the following ingredients for it:
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil (or any oil of your choice)
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (balsamic vinegar or red wine vinegar will do too)
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon raw honey (or maple syrup)
- 1 clove of fresh garlic, minced
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
How to Make Arugula Quinoa Salad
- Toss all of your dry ingredients in a large bowl.
- In a small bowl, prepare your dressing. Whisk till everything combines super well.
- Drizzle the dressing on the salad and toss to combine. Enjoy!
Tips and Tricks
- A quicker and simpler way of preparing the dressing is to add everything to a mason jar and shake well till combined.
- Never dress your entire salad all at once. Do it in parts.
- For extra protein, you can add some crispy chickpeas to the mix. Grilled tofu, shrimp, or grilled chicken are some of my favorite ways to add more protein.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Leave Out Baby Arugulas?
If you’re not a fan, use another leafy green of your choice. Baby spinach and kale work for me.
Can I Add Any Other Vegetables?
Yes, you can! Red onion, sugar snap peas, sweet potatoes, and red bell peppers will all complement the rest of the flavors of this healthy lunch. Kalamata olives
Can I Make the Salad in Advance?
Yes! I prefer making it a night in advance. It chills perfectly. But leave the dressing out till you’re ready to serve.
Can I Make a Larger Batch?
Why not? You can easily prepare a big batch of quinoa salad. It’s easy to store and is a crowd-pleaser.
Is this a main course salad?
Based on the nutritional profile and serving size, this is a hearty side dish. If you’d like to make it a main course salad, I recommend adding some more protein. I suggest cooked chicken, beans, or tofu. I love to cook a whole chicken in the Instant Pot as meal prep to add to salads like this!
How to Store Arugula Quinoa Salad?
You can store your leftover, undressed salad in an airtight container in the fridge for four days easily. When you’re ready to eat again, bring it to room temperature or enjoy a cold quinoa salad.
If you liked the recipe, and decide to give it a try, do let me know your feedback! Please leave a comment and star rating below. Share your photo on Instagram and I’ll feature you! Make sure to tag me so I don’t miss it.
If you want more recipes with quinoa, scroll below the recipe card to see the other delicious options I’ve created!Print
Recipes with Quinoa
All of these recipes utilize quinoa, which is high in plant-based protein!
If you’d like a quinoa salad without any greens, this is the one to try!
This one is perfect to make in the summer when fresh berries are in season!
This delicious salad is made with tomatoes, fresh basil, and fresh mozzarella cheese!
This is a main-course quinoa salad with fabulous flavors!
I hope you find even more quinoa recipes you love here!