Quinoa Salad With Kale, Butternut Squash & Crimini Mushrooms

Quinoa salad with kale, onions, and crimini mushrooms. #meatlessmonday

So don’t worry, you’re not on the wrong blog. I really am sharing a gluten-free, vegan recipe. I’ll snap out of it soon. Who’s up for cookies as my next recipe?!  Kidding. Mostly.

Alright listen, I’m not a huge quinoa person. I know people rave about it for it’s health benefits, but I’ve always been kind of thrown by the fact it has a freaking tail once you cook it. It’s fine, texturally speaking. And if you cook it in stock instead of water, it tastes better.  Kale I totally dig. Kale is hot right now, are y’all over kale yet? I’m not into kale because it’s trendy, I legit love all dark leafy greens.  Mustard greens are actually my favorite, but kale is what they had at the store. I tried to have a combo of acid and heat in these veggies. Dark leafy greens are delicious when cooked with a little vinegar or lemon juice as well as some hot pepper flakes or hot sauce.  You could put whatever veggies you have on hand in this dish. If you weren’t angling for a meatless meal, some sausage would be a nice addition. Or duh, you could put an egg on it. Come to think of it, an alternate title for this post could be “This Would Be Better With An Egg On It.”

This is one of those simple dishes that for the most part comes together in one skillet. It serves six, so I will be eating leftovers for a while.


1 1/2 cups uncooked quinoa
3 cups low sodium stock (chicken or veggie, your preference)
1/2 large yellow onion
1 bag kale (approximately 5 or 6 cups, ribs removed)
1 medium butternut squash, cubed (about 2 cups)
1 package crimini mushrooms, sliced
3 Tablespoons olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste
Red pepper flake to taste
Zest of one lemon
Juice of 1/2 lemon


First, rinse the dry quinoa thoroughly in cold water. In a medium pot bring the stock to a boil. Add the quinoa, stir, let it return to a full boil, then cover and reduce heat to low. Set a timer for 15 minutes and begin cooking the veggies.

In a very large saute pan over medium-high heat, saute the onions in olive oil for around 2 minutes or  until they begin to become translucent. Add in the mushrooms, butternut squash, and then 2/3s of the kale on top of that. Feel free to walk away for a while. Nothing bad will happen. Kale is pretty sturdy and takes a few minutes to soften up. Once it starts to wilt, add in the remaining kale as well as the red pepper flake, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Saute the veg, stirring occasionally for 5-7 minutes. Add in a few dashes of stock and work the yummy brown bits (technical term is fond, but who says that?) off of the pan.

By now the quinoa should be done cooking. Leave the lid on, move it off the heat and let it sit there for 5 more minutes. Lower the heat for your veggies to medium-low. Finally, fluff the quinoa with a fork and dump it into the saute pan. Fold quinoa into the veggies to combine all the ingredients.

Boom. Done. 20 minute dinner.

You should probably put a fried egg on top of that. I wish I had.

Posted in Main Dishes, Recipes, Vegetarian

2 Responses

  1. Sarah says:

    YUMM! I’m loving quinoa as of two weeks ago when I made this avocado, purple onion version. It’s all about what you put with it. This recipe looks fabulous!

  2. Patty says:

    This was excellent! Loved the addition of the lemon zest & juice, and red pepper. Really kicked it up!

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