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Crunchy Kale and Quinoa Salad | Lemons and Basil
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5 from 1 vote

Crunchy Kale and Quinoa Salad

This Crunchy Kale and Quinoa Salad is the ideal Memorial Day salad - full of flavor and crunch, it's bursting with color and boasting in nutrition!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Course: Lunch/Salad
Cuisine: Salad
Keyword: cashews, kale, parmesan cheese, pumpkin seeds, quinoa, salad
Servings: 8 people, as a side
Author: Kaylee Pauley



  • ¾ cup uncooked quinoa rinsed
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • 4-5 cups kale stems removed, chopped, and massaged*
  • 2 cups purple cabbage finely chopped
  • 2 large carrots peeled and finely chopped
  • ½ cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup roasted pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese or parmesan/asiago blend
  • 1 medium avocado cubed


  • 5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper


  • Rinse 3/4 cup quinoa in cold water, then add to medium pot with 1 1/2 cups water. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes or until fluffy. Set aside to cool. (See notes*)
  • While quinoa is cooling, add 4-5 cups chopped kale, 2 cups purple cabbage, and 2 chopped carrots to a large salad bowl. Toss to coat until well combined.
  • Once quinoa has cooled and is room temperature, add to the salad bowl, along with 1/2 cup raisins, 1/4 roasted pumpkin seeds, 1/4 raw cashews, 1/2 parmesan cheese, and medium avocado. Toss until all ingredients are well combined.
  • Add all ingredients for the dressing to a small mason jar, top with lid and shake until well mixed.
  • Divide into individual bowls and top with desired amount of dressing OR add about 1/2 of dressing recipe to the large bowl and toss to coat, taste and add more if desired (see notes*).
  • Garnish with additional parmesan cheese, cashews, and pumpkin seeds.


  • Feeds 3-4 as entree salad and 6-8 as side salad.
  • To speed up the assembling of your salad, cook the quinoa ahead of time so it can cool, or cook it the night before and store in refrigerator.
  • To massage your kale once it's chopped, add it to your large bowl first, drizzle it with a little olive oil or a bit of the dressing, then gently scrunch and massage it in your hands to soften it. 
  • I like to add my dressing to each bowl individually as some prefer more dressing than others. It also keeps any leftovers fresher in the refrigerator if dressing has not been added.