Super Bowl Sunday food - Winter Quinoa and Kale Salad in white bowl
Recipe Video, Salads, Vegetarian

Winter Quinoa and Kale Salad

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This Winter Quinoa & Kale Salad is full of winter fruits and bold flavors! The crunch of the pomegranates and creamy goat cheese will instantly have you hooked.

I love salad! I eat one almost every day, no lie, and it is my favorite way to get my veggies in. There are endless possibilities for toppings and creations. A salad should never be boring and this Winter Quinoa and Kale Salad is the most exciting of all!

I usually go with spinach for my typical salads but in the winter I like to bulk it up a little bit and switch the spinach out for hearty kale. I use to NOT be a fan of kale (like at all!), but then I realized I didn’t really know how to probably use it in dishes. Unlike spinach, kale is very dense and tough….BUT…there is one little secret  I learned that was a total game changer in the salad department.

Winter Quinoa and Kale Salad ingredients on counter

My Top Secret for the BEST Kale Salads!

Massaging the dressing into the kale.

Yes, you heard me, massaging it.

Literally.

Since it is so tough and dense, pouring dressing over like a normal salad tends to just “sit on top” instead of getting soaked in every little crevice. You need to get down and dirty with kale. It can handle it.

Buy a large bag of prepackage-prewashed-precut kale (hello time saver!) and dump into a large bowl. Pour your dressing over – NOTE yummy and delicious and incredibly homemade dressing in recipe below-YAY — put some gloves on and get in there! You want to make sure you rub each piece so that the dressing coats every single bite. It takes a couple minutes but as you are working you will begin to see a difference. The leaves get shiny and the kale will begin to relax and wilt slightly making every bite just a little more tender.

Pouring dressing over Winter Quinoa and Kale Salad

Which Yummy Toppings to Use on This Salad

Once that is complete everything else is just layering on the toppings. Pile on

  • Fluffy cooked quinoa
  • Juicy pomegranates (my favorite winter fruit!)
  • Mandarin oranges
  • Crispy chickpeas
  • Almonds
  • Creamy goat cheese!

Leave layered until ready to serve then toss everything together-each bit will be tangy, sweet, crunchy and mind-blowing delicious. Who knew a simple salad could be so good. 😉

plated Winter Quinoa and Kale Salad

Can You Keep Leftover of Kale Salad?

Yes! Yes you can and it it amazing!

Since the kale is tougher than spinach or lettuce it holds up longer. Just cover leftovers tightly and store in the fridge and enjoy again the next day.

This makes a ton so it is perfect for a dinner party! If you want to bulk it up try adding some chicken, salmon or shrimp to add a little more protein–whatever your heart desires!

Enjoy!

Print
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Super Bowl Sunday food - Winter Quinoa and Kale Salad in white bowl

Winter Quinoa & Kale Salad


  • Author: Heather
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 68 1x

Description

This Winter Quinoa & Kale Salad is full of winter fruits and bold flavors! The crunch of the pomegranates and creamy goat cheese will instantly have you hooked.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 6 Cups of Kale
  • 1/2 Cup Quinoa, cooked
  • 3/4 Cup Pomegranate Arils
  • 10 Ounces Mandarin Oranges, rinsed
  • 15 Ounce Canned Chickpeas
  • 4 Ounces Goat Cheese, crumbled
  • 1/4 Cup Almonds, slivered or sliced

Dressing

  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard
  • 2 Tablespoons Honey
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1 Spring Fresh Rosemary, finely chopped
  • Salt & Pepper, pinch

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare chickpeas according to the roasted chickpea recipe.
  2. Prepare 1 cup of dried quinoa accordingly to package directions. Fluff with a fork once cooked and let cool.
  3. Wash, dry and de-stem kale (or buy prepackage chopped and washed kale). Place in large bowl.
  4. In a mason jar or a tightly sealed jar combine all dressing ingredients. Close tightly and shake vigorously until well combined. Taste and adjust spices if needed and accordingly.
  5. Pour dressing over kale. While wearing gloves massage the dressing with the kale. It will take 1-2 minutes until all leaves are coated and kale starts to look shiny and slightly wilted.
  6. Add kale to whichever serving bowl and dish you will be using.
  7. Add 1/2 of cooked quinoa over kale. Continue to layer on pomegranates, oranges, roasted chickpeas, goat cheese, and almonds.
  8. Serve right away. Can be kept in tightly sealed container in the refrigerator and enjoyed the next day. Add grilled chicken, salmon or shrimp for added protein. Enjoy!
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Category: Salad
  • Method: Cooking
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 cup
  • Calories: 239
  • Sugar: 13.9 g
  • Sodium: 147.3 mg
  • Fat: 12.3 g
  • Carbohydrates: 26.6 g
  • Fiber: 5.2 g
  • Protein: 8.9 g
  • Cholesterol: 6.5 mg

Keywords: Winter Quinoa & Kale Salad

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