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Quinoa Salad with Kale, Cranberries and Mint

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This healthy Quinoa Salad with Kale, Cranberries and Mint is perfect for bringing to a potluck or serving with anything you’re grilling, like chicken , fish, or steaks.

Quinoa Salad
Quinoa Salad with Kale, Cranberries and Mint

Mint is always the first thing to pop up in my garden each spring, and I have tons of it growing right now. I love adding it to salads. If you’re like me and have a lot of it, too, then this quinoa salad will be an excellent way to use it up! The mint combined with quinoa, dried cranberries, fresh kale, and lemon juice results in a very flavorful salad that is also super easy to make. For more quinoa salad recipes, try my Grilled Mediterranean Chicken and Quinoa Salad and Southwestern Black Bean, Quinoa and Mango Salad.

Quinoa Salad

How to Cook Quinoa for Salad

When making quinoa to use in salads, I don’t like mushy quinoa. I have a couple of tips for cooking fluffy, delicious quinoa.

  • Rinse: Make sure to rinse your quinoa before cooking it. Quinoa has a coating that can make it taste bitter when cooked, but a rinse in a mesh strainer will remove it.
  • Water to Quinoa Ratio: Use 1 3/4 cups of water for every 1 cup of quinoa. See full directions on how to cook quinoa here.
  • Use Tricolor or Red Quinoa: The texture is firmer and best for adding to salads.
  • Instant Pot: You can also make perfect quinoa in the Instant Pot.

Meal Prep Tips

This quinoa salad is great to meal prep and serve for lunches throughout the week. Make it ahead and refrigerate for up to five days.


  • If you can’t find tricolor or red quinoa, regular, brown quinoa will work.
  • Sub quinoa for another grain like couscous, barley, or farro.
  • Add cucumber or avocado for extra veggies.
  • Swap kale for spinach or arugula.
  • Add roasted pecans, walnuts, or almonds for some crunch.
  • If you want some cheese, try using feta or goat cheese.

Quinoa Salad with Kale, Cranberries and MintQuinoa Salad ingredientsQuinoa SaladQuinoa Salad

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Quinoa Salad with Kale, Cranberries and Mint

5 from 4 votes
This healthy Quinoa Salad with Kale, Cranberries and Mint is perfect for bringing to a potluck or serving with anything you’re grilling.
Course: Lunch, Meal Prep, Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Quinoa Salad
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Yield: 6 servings
Serving Size: 1 /2 cup


  • 1 2/3 cups water
  • 1 cup tricolor or red quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped kale, packed
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh spearmint leaves
  • 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large lemon, juiced
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 medium scallion, thinly sliced


  • Bring the water and salt to a boil in a saucepan over high heat.
  • Add quinoa, reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the quinoa is tender and the liquid has been absorbed, about 18 to 20 minutes.
  • Fluff quinoa with a fork and set aside to cool.
  • Once cooled, in a large bowl combine the kale, dried cranberries, mint, olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest and scallion.
  • Refrigerate until ready to eat. Serve chilled.

Last Step:

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Serving: 1 /2 cup, Calories: 191 kcal, Carbohydrates: 30 g, Protein: 5 g, Fat: 6 g, Saturated Fat: 0.6 g, Fiber: 4 g, Sugar: 9 g