this is one of the many reasons why having cooked quinoa on hand throughout the week is super convenient and great. this flavorful & hearty salad can come together so very quickly!
some types of kale are super tough and need a little bit of softening instead of eating it all thick and raw. like dinosaur kale - there ain't enough time in the day to spend chewing through that stuff. i roasted this kale in the oven with olive oil, salt, and pepper for about 15 minutes. that'll do the trick.
hot tip: if you leave em in for 15 minutes extra after that, you'll have delicious crispy kale chips! sprinkle some fresh parmesan cheese on top and you've got a yummy snack. also do this while you're at it - whisk together a little olive oil and sriracha and drizzle it on the chips, too. mmm.
adding the white beans to this salad is really what gives it oomph. i would also use red beans. probably not black beans for this particular salad.
i wanted the dressing to be light, but flavorful. i just went with lemon juice and red wine vinegar. top it all off with some cold creamy goat cheese, juicy halved cherry tomatoes, and a handful of pickled red onions, and you've got a super tasty, fresh, and healthy salad ready for the eatin'!
Roasted Kale & Quinoa Salad with White Beans & Goat Cheese
- 2-4 large leaves of kale, washed and roughly chopped
- 3/4 cup quinoa, cooked (I used Trader Joe's tricolor quinoa)
- 1/2 cup cannellini beans, rinsed
- handful of cherry tomatoes (red or yellow), sliced in half
- pickled red onions
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 3 oz cold goat cheese, crumbled
- juice of half a lemon
- salt & pepper, to taste
- 2 TB olive oil
Cook 1 cup of quinoa on the stove top as directed (you may not use all the cooked quinoa; i usually cook 1 cup just to have some leftover for random things - 1 cup is quite a bit).
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. In a baking pan, toss the chopped kale in olive oil, salt, and pepper. Gently massage the leaves with your hands until the olive oil is evenly distributed. Spread the kale in the pan and place on the center rack in the oven. Roast for about 15 minutes until kale is tenderized, but not quite crispy. Remove from oven and let cool a few minutes.
In a large bowl, toss the roasted kale, quinoa, white beans, lemon juice, and red wine vinegar together. Top with fresh goat cheese crumbles, cherry tomatoes, and pickled red onion. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately. Store leftovers covered in refrigerator for 1-2 days.