Kale Quinoa Salad with Blueberries
This Kale Quinoa Salad packs a nutritional punch! Quinoa, blueberries, and avocado bring lots of flavor to this healthy make ahead lunch salad.
I am vowing once again to make lunchtime more interesting. When it comes to healthy dinners, I have tons of favorite easy recipes to rely on. I’m also always sure to make a healthy breakfast, usually either overnight oats, eggs and toast, or these Healthy Greek Yogurt Pancakes.
But when it comes to lunch, I never quite have a plan and we usually end up eating a sandwich or quesadilla. I thought about my Healthy Broccoli Salad or Tabouli. Some days (like today) I plan ahead and chop some veggies to eat with our favorite white bean dip, but more often than I care to admit I eat a boring peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch.
The key, I’ve discovered, is to prep make ahead lunches that we can then enjoy throughout the week. The middle of the day is a super busy time when I’m at home with the kids, so lunch has to come together FAST. On work and school days, the best options are those that are ready to grab and go, like leftovers or make ahead salads.
You can make the quinoa ahead of time by following my How to Cook Quinoa guide.
Last week was my first week of summer break from teaching, so I promised myself I was going to get creative in the kitchen and make us a salad that Brad and I could enjoy for a few days’ worth of lunches. I knew I wanted it to have quinoa and blueberries in it. Then I decided it had to have avocado. And almonds.
We had lots of kale washed and ready to go in our refrigerator since I had just recorded the video for how to wash kale. The salad was already packed with superfoods, and healthy kale was the perfect thing to power it up even more!
You don’t see them in the pictures, but I also added chickpeas to this kale quinoa salad because I wanted to bulk it up with even more protein. The quinoa provides a good amount of protein as well. I’m listing the chickpeas as optional in the ingredient list, as this salad is delicious both with and without them.
You can make this Kale Quinoa Salad with Blueberries ahead of time for grab and go work lunches. I recommend waiting to add the avocado and almonds right before serving, to keep the avocado fresh and the almonds crunchy.
Why we love this kale quinoa salad:
- This kale quinoa salad is loaded with healthy ingredients! Kale is low in calories, high in fiber, and has nearly 3 grams of protein per cup. Blueberries have one of the highest levels of antioxidants among all foods. Quinoa is naturally gluten free and a good source of protein and fiber.
- With all of the flavors and textures going on here, this salad is anything but boring! We especially love the creamy goat cheese with the quinoa and kale!
- It lasts in the refrigerator for 3 days, so you can make a big batch for a few days’ worth of lunches.
Also try my classic kale salad!
More Quinoa Recipes:
- Instant Pot Quinoa
- Quinoa Stuffed Peppers
- Quinoa and Mushrooms
- Quinoa Lunch Bowls
- Spinach and Quinoa Salad
Kale Quinoa Salad with Blueberries
For the Salad:
- 1 cup quinoa
- 6 cups kale, 1 large bunch with tough stems removed and chopped (see my easy method for prepping kale!)
- 15 ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained (optional)
- 1 cup blueberries
- 4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
- ½ cup sliced almonds
- 1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and chopped
For the Dressing:
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 ½ teaspoons Dijon mustard
- ¼ teaspoon Kosher salt
- a bit of black pepper
- Rinse and drain the quinoa. Place quinoa and 2 cups water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to a low simmer, and cook for about 15 minutes until water is absorbed. Transfer to a large bowl to cool.
- Meanwhile, make the dressing. Whisk together all dressing ingredients in a large salad bowl. Add the kale and, using your hands, toss it with the dressing.
- Once the quinoa is cool, add it to the bowl with the kale, along with the chickpeas (if using), blueberries, goat cheese, almonds, and avocado. Toss gently to combine. Serve.
What a gorgeous salad, Kristine! I’m like you and never really put much thought into lunch, so this looks perfect to have, especially during the week. I love the quinoa and blueberry combination. Sounds so fresh for this time of year!
Kale salads are my favorite! I love the quinoa for added protein and those blueberries are gorgeous 🙂 Also goat cheese + sliced almonds in salads is my ultimate weakness.
Aren’t goat cheese and almonds the best on salads?! Thanks for the kind words!
I just watched your video for how to store kale the other day and it’s inspired me to buy some and try it out more! I love this salad and everything in it, so I may have to give it a try soon!
Thanks, Danielle! Kale takes some getting used to, but I love it now!
This is exactly the type of make ahead lunch that I love! What a delicious combination of ingredients! I need to remember this next week…
Thanks, Blair! That’s the hard part for me, too… remembering all of the recipes I want to try! 😉
YUM! This looks like my kind of salad – so fresh and healthy for summer! Your site looks fantastic, too!
Thank you, Kelly!
Oh wow – so many awesome things going on in this salad! I just love the colors and textures. I never do a good job with creative lunches, I really need to get better at that. Enjoy your summer vacation!
Thanks, Sherri! I hope you are enjoying the summer, too!
I love kale and salads like this are the way I like to lunch! These ingredients are some of my very favorite, and I’d happily eat this every day of the week!
Thanks, Marcie! Lunches like this are my favorite too!
This is a fantastic salad! We just gobbled down our test batch and will be making it again for Thanksgiving lunch. It’s beautiful, wholesome and delicious. We had with chickpeas. My 3 year old will only eat a “lettuceless” salad so I took her kale and she was still left with a healthy and tasty meal.
I’m so happy to hear that you liked this salad, Erin! Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment to let me know how it turned out. 🙂
I substituted feta cheese for the host cheese and the salad was delicious. I highly recommend this recipe.
I’m so glad you enjoyed this salad, Nikki!
Sounds great! Any idea about the macros though? ?. That would really help me in keeping my nutritional limits intact…
This salad is now my go-to lunch for work!!! It’s my absolute favorite and so easy to make. Thank you for sharing!
I’m happy to hear that, Jenna! We love this one as well!
This looks absolutely delicious! I’d love to include it in my 7 day meal plan for my readers if I have your permission. I would link the recipe to your blog post here.
Thank you for sharing this post!
Sure, I appreciate you linking to me in your meal plan, with a link to my post for the recipe. Thank you!
This is my favourite kale salad at the moment. I halved the dressing and have been topping the kale with just the goat cheese, slivered almonds and blueberries!!! Such a delicious combo. Also fun for the kids as we did a make your own salad with all of the toppings in separate dishes. Thanks for the great recipe.