You’ll find yourself making this cold quinoa arugula salad over and over again! Not only is this quinoa and arugula salad incredibly flavorful with it’s bright lemon vinaigrette, but it’s also ready in just 15 minutes prep. Each serving of this vegan quinoa salad has a whopping 19 grams of plant based protein making it a great make-ahead lunch or dinner side. One bite and I think you’ll agree, it’s the best quinoa salad!
If you’re anything like me, the idea of quinoa is good…but plain quinoa is not. But when we add some flavor, color, and crunch? It’s a whole different story. And this quinoa and arugula salad will show exactly what I mean.
This quinoa arugula salad recipe was originally posted in April 2014 and updated in June 2021 to include step-by-step instructions, FAQs, and more.
Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
Table of Contents
- What You’ll Love About Quinoa Arugula Salad
- Ingredients to Make Quinoa Arugula Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette
- How to Make Quinoa and Arugula Salad
- Cold Quinoa Salad FAQs
- How to Store Leftover Vegan Quinoa Salad
- More Quinoa Recipes
- Helpful Tools to Make the Best Quinoa Salad
What You’ll Love About Quinoa Arugula Salad
- Fresh and bright
- An interesting mix of textures
- Satisfying, it has 20 grams of plant-based protein
- Can be meal prepped ahead
Ingredients to Make Quinoa Arugula Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette
This amazing quinoa salad is made with just 7 ingredients, plus salt and pepper:
- Quinoa: Ahhhh, the star of this quinoa arugula salad! Make a big batch and freeze it for later. You can easily prep this ahead 2-3 days.
- Arugula: This peppery green is perfect in salads. It adds great flavor bite and a gorgeous deep green shade. If arugula is a little too much for you, you could also use torn butter/bibb lettuce or red leaf lettuce. These greens don’t hold up quite as well once dressed, so dress them right before you eat the salad.
- Lemon Vinaigrette: I added lemon juice and zest to the vinaigrette to give it that light lemon flavor that I love in salads this time of year.
- Chopped Almonds: I added chopped almonds for some extra staying power and a necessary crunch.
How to Make Quinoa and Arugula Salad
This amazing quinoa salad is ready with just 15 minutes prep! Here’s how to make it:
- Cook quinoa. Cook quinoa according to package instructions.
- Make lemon vinaigrette. In a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice, lemon zest, olive oil, honey, minced shallots, sea salt, and black pepper.
- Assemble quinoa and arugula salad. Toss together quinoa, arugula, and dressing until combined. Top with chopped almonds.
Cold Quinoa Salad FAQs
What is quinoa salad made of?
It depends on the salad, but many quinoa salads are made with a base of quinoa, some vegetables, some protein (beans, cheese, protein), and a dressing to bring it all together.
This cold quinoa salad is made with quinoa, arugula, a lemon vinaigrette, and almonds.
Is quinoa salad served hot or cold?
It depends on the salad! Many can be served either way but the beauty of a salad like this is that it tastes great cold or at room temperature.
Is quinoa arugula salad vegan?
It will vary based on the recipe and ingredients. This vegan quinoa salad is both vegetarian and vegan.
What to add to quinoa salad?
A general rule of thumb is to include the grain, some veggies for texture, some cheese or protein to make it filling, a dressing to bring it together, and some cheese or nuts for extra crunch and flavor.
Can I add a protein to this salad?
If you want a really filling salad, I recommend topping it with some garbanzo beans, chopped hard boiled eggs or grilled chicken or salmon.
How to Store Leftover Vegan Quinoa Salad
Store this leftover healthy quinoa salad in the refrigerator for 1-2 days. For best results, store all of the components separately so that the arugula doesn’t get soggy.
When you’re ready to serve, take the dressing out of the fridge to come to room temperature (if you forget, run the jar under warm water) and assemble salad, dress, and toss together. Sprinkle with roasted almonds.
More Quinoa Recipes
If you like this arugula quinoa salad recipe, you might also like some of these other quinoa-based recipes:
- Chicken Quinoa Hummus Bowls – A great summer meal that’s the second meal using grilled lemon chicken.
- Mexican Black Bean Quinoa Salad – Full of flavor, vegetarian protein, and is best made ahead and served cold.
- Summer Quinoa Salad – This salad has the best summer produce (zucchini, tomato, and basil!) and is perfect for parties and get-togethers.
- Healthy Quinoa Cakes – Designed for young kids, but adults LOVE them too!
- Pizza Quinoa Casserole – Traditional pizza flavors in a quinoa casserole form.
Helpful Tools to Make the Best Quinoa Salad
- Microplane Zester – Use this to get ALL of the zest off your citrus. I also love to grate garlic with this tool as well.
- Citrus Juicer – This juicer will help you get all the juice out of citrus, no matter if you’re making the best quinoa salad or margaritas. 😉
The BEST quinoa and arugula salad recipe is bright, fresh, + flavorful. The perfect side to a grilled dinner or easy lunch. Ready in just 20 minutes.
- Prepare quinoa as directed and let cool.
- In a small bowl, whisk together all vinaigrette ingredients. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Toss quinoa, arugula, and dressing together. Sprinkle with chopped almonds.
- This salad is best made ahead of time to let the flavors deepen, and it’s great the next day.
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